What is Live Betting?

Sports betting is live in New York, and live betting is, too! (will be, soon!) Don’t be fooled — that sentence is not redundant. Sports betting is, indeed, underway in the Empire State, and live betting is a type of sports betting that you may encounter.

Live betting is particularly common through online sportsbooks. Because of the technology of the day, you have far more betting options through your device or computer than you ever would in a retail sportsbook. Even if a retail sportsbook has a few live betting options, the selection pales in comparison to what you can find in the palm of your hand.

Since online sports betting is live (will be live soon) in New York, you must know what live betting is. It can be a fun way to bet, but it can also spell disaster for the uninitiated and/or those who get carried away. So, read on for all the ins and outs of this fascinating and exciting way to bet on sports in New York.

Best live betting apps in New York

Note: These sportsbooks are not live in New York yet. However, based upon their existing partnerships, they have the inside track to be the first to launch in the Empire State when lawmakers finally allow online sports betting.

Not all sportsbook apps are created equal. Some push the envelope and seek to reimagine what sports betting can be, while others are content, more or less, to let their apps be a simple translation of their physical sportsbooks. Needless to say, we are far more interested in the former. So, these sportsbooks are our picks for the best (soon-to-be) sportsbook apps in New York.

FanDuel Sportsbook app

FanDuel Sportsbook is one of the top sportsbook apps in the US for a reason. The combination of slick, simple navigation and generous bonuses make its appeal hard to deny. For live bettors, you can look forward to (find) some of the following features:

  • Lightning-fast app eliminates the risk of lag or technical issues sabotaging bets
  • Live betting option is easy and intuitive to use
  • Lines and odds are competitive and offer great value

DraftKings Sportsbook app

DraftKings Sportsbook has risen to become one of the biggest names in American sports betting over the last few years. The black-and-green company has built a reputation for excellence, innovation, and a memorably-terrible series of commercials (DraftKings). Live bettors on the site will have plenty to like, including:

  • A custom betting wheel that adjusts to your preferences and betting history
  • Wide range of live betting options, including less-popular sports
  • A fast and appealing app that allows players a ton of control over their wagers

BetRivers Sportsbook app

BetRivers Sportsbook should be a familiar name to many New Yorkers. It is the online sportsbook app associated with Rush Street Interactive’s portfolio of casinos, which includes Rivers Schenectady. If you want to live bet at BetRivers, there is plenty to like:

  • Wide range of live betting options, including esoteric sports options around the globe
  • The slick, easy-to-use app interface
  • Ability to live stream events and bet on the fly

How does live betting work?

Live betting is wagering on games that are already underway. It is sometimes called in-game betting or in-play wagering. Live betting options evolve out of the game’s actual progress. So, although you might be able to anticipate some of the opportunities that will arise, you won’t know what the exact odds or details of the wager are until you’re in the moment.

Live bets move at an incredible rate of speed. Opportunities to wager can come and go within a minute or two. As a result, live betting is far more common online. The logistics of retail live betting are usually not going to work.

Live betting is also a form of proposition betting. While classifying a bet’s type is not usually important, it is critical to bear in mind for live betting. There are three main varieties of live wagers you’ll encounter, and they can easily masquerade as other types of bets if you’re unaware.

The first and most common, type of live bet is the partial game result. A sportsbook might ask you which team will “win” or what will be the result of a period of play. There may also be options regarding the outcome of micro-events during the game — all the way down to individual possessions or segments of play. Needless to say, there can be quite a few of these options during the game.

Another common type of live bet revolves around milestone achievement. Generally speaking, these milestones are game-based, rather than a season or career milestones. Typically, they appear when a player or team seems to be on a certain statistical path. So, for instance, if a team has scored X points by halftime, a sportsbook might ask whether the team will have more or less than 2 times X points by the end of the game, and offer odds for either outcome.

Finally, there are usually live betting options that involve the continuation of common pregame wagers. So, you will be able to continue betting the spread, the moneyline, and the total (over/under) after the game has begun. However, you must realize these are prop bets, not their named type of wager. Pregame wagers are subject to movement due to analysis, betting action, and “smart” money perceptions. Once the game begins, however, the sportsbook odds begin to move dynamically because of the progress of the game. So, they become far less predictable than their namesakes. That’s not to say that you cannot or should not be them, but you need to recognize them for what they are, not what they claim to be.

Reasons to start live betting

At this point, if you are a casual or cautious bettor, you could be thinking that live betting is not the thing for you. After all, high-speed, high-pressure situations are not why you visit a sportsbook, whether in-person or online. Truthfully, that’s a reasonable reaction to the concept, but you might not want to write off live betting just yet. Like many types of sports bets, it can be an extremely valuable tool in your NY sports betting arsenal.

It’s true that live betting options come and go with a great deal of speed. However, there are also a lot of them during a game. Since live betting can involve the outcome of such small events, like single-play results, it is not uncommon to see opportunities for more than a hundred wagers during a single match’s runtime. So, you have an entirely new universe of opportunities to bet now. You no longer have to twiddle your thumbs and sweat while you’re waiting to see if your pregame wagers are going to pay off.

With those new opportunities, you also have the chance to change the trajectory of your betting for that match. If your pregame assessment is turning out to be accurate, you can find extra ways to capitalize on that data. On the other hand, if your opening bets are going south, you might be able to find hedging possibilities to recoup the losses or turn the entire arc of the game around.

Finally, because live bets are so rapid-fire, live betting odds are not subject to nearly the level of analysis that the pregame propositions are. Because they are not honed in the same way, there is a very real possibility of finding golden opportunities and extremely favorable odds. If you know what to study during the game, live betting can be a potent way to add dollars to your bankroll.

How to place a live bet

The good news is that the mechanics of placing a live bet are no different than placing a pregame wager. If you see the option on your screen or mobile device, then it is available, and you need only press the buttons and submit your bet slip as usual.

Examples of live betting options

Live betting is a centerpiece for most online sportsbooks these days. The potential for bets to come in throughout a game is enticing for bettors and bookmakers alike. So, you can find live betting options for almost any sport available through the app. As a general rule, more live betting options will present themselves for bigger events.

Here are some of the offerings found at top sportsbooks for various sports, including live betting on hockey, soccer, and basketball games.

Basketball (from DraftKings)

In game betting on basketball at DraftKings

Live betting on basketball at DraftKings

Live basketball betting at DraftKings

Soccer (from FanDuel)

Live betting on soccer at FanDuel

Hockey (from BetMGM)

Live betting on hockey at BetMGM

The options are determined by what games are live. For the most part, you’re going to find continued pregame wagers on some of the more esoteric or outside-the-US sporting events. However, if you remain vigilant, you should be able to find some excellent options on any top sportsbook.

Live/In-Game betting strategies

Although live betting is chaotic and unpredictable, there are various things that you can do to have a positive experience with it. Your preconceptions of the game at hand might not be accurate any longer, but the underlying assumptions about the players and the teams very well could be.

However, if you are used to a methodical consideration process before you make a sports bet, you may need to adjust your thinking. There simply isn’t enough time for a complicated procedure for each live bet.

The good news, though, is that if you keep these live betting tips below in mind, you’ll give yourself a much better chance at live betting success. So, here are a few pointers for how to jump into live betting:

  • Move fast, but go slow. You are going to have to make quick decisions in live betting, but you don’t have to overwhelm yourself with them. Even though there can be more than one hundred opportunities for you to bet during a game, you absolutely should not bet on every single one. Pace yourself.
  • Watch for developing trends. Although live bets appear without warning, you can still do some preparation for potential opportunities. If you notice that a particular player or team seems to be creating a pattern of behavior, start thinking about whether you believe the pattern will continue. If possible, get a rough idea about the decision you would make on that type of bet, then keep your eyes open to see if it will appear on the board.
  • Look for ways to balance your risk. As mentioned, live betting can offer a terrific opportunity to augment on or hedge against your pregame wagers. However, more broadly, live betting can be a source of opportunities to mitigate some of the downsides that you are facing. For instance, you may be able to find opportunities to middle with live spreads versus the pregame marks. At the very least, you might be able to balance out unforeseen blowouts.

Live sports betting mistakes to avoid

Of course, live betting is no magic type of wager that promises winnings for you. Losses in live betting are inevitable, but winning is difficult enough without making things worse for yourself. So, here are some of the most common dangers to watch when making live betting a part of your sports betting portfolio.

  • Ignoring your bankroll. The speed and quantity of betting options available if you’re live betting can be quite exhilarating and overwhelming. It’s possible to see tons of interesting options on the board, and more could pop up at any time. However, it is critically important that you do not lose your head and bet everything you see. More bets mean more money going out, and you can find yourself with a depleted account balance faster than you can blink.
  • Betting live to get even. While you can use live betting to balance against your downsides, you should never look at in-game options as the answer to a bad day. They can be a downright nightmare if you’re already in a poor frame of mind. If it’s not your day and things are looking grim, don’t make it worse by chasing your losses into the course of the game. Save your cash, save your sanity, and come back fresh some other time.
  • Betting outside your comfort zone. Live betting can be intimidating for seasoned sports bettors, let alone more casual players. So, don’t make things worse by betting on sports or types of wagers unfamiliar to you. One of the axioms of sports betting is that you must do your homework and know your sports and bets if you want to have a decent chance of success. It’s hard enough to win in a familiar sport and bet when you have time. Live betting is not the time to “try something.”

Live betting wrap-up

Live betting is certainly here to stay (coming soon) in New York. As you log onto the wonderful sportsbook apps active in the Empire State, you are guaranteed to come across a large number of live betting opportunities. The days of making three or four pregame bets and waiting for the game to play out are in the past.

Whether you are excited or intimidated by the concept of live betting, you should give it a look. Live betting can be a great way to get different looks at a game and bet on smaller portions of gameplay that you’ve noticed. A calm and savvy sports bettor can use live betting to pad his solid results and reduce the impacts of the downturns.

However, live betting speed and lack of analysis (for both sportsbook and bettor) are not to be ignored. Things can quickly turn south if you don’t take the precious little time you have to consider your options. There’s no reason to rush since another bet will pop up shortly, anyway. Be selective, don’t bet the house, and try to have fun with it. After all, rooting for someone to shoot a 3-pointer or rush for seven yards – not six – can be pretty intoxicating.

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