Nevada sportsbooks won $52 million this September with a total handle of $546 million, beating New Jersey for the first time in three months (NJ made $38 million in profit in September with a $445 million handle.
The biggest takeaway from the Nevada Gaming Control numbers were, you guessed it, parlays. Sportsbooks reported a hold percentage of 43.16% on parlays in September. The hold is the amount the book holds on to after all bets have been settled and paid out. In comparison, the hold for football was 10.35% and the hold for baseball was 6.22%. The overall hold for all sports was 9.53%.
In other words, the books made an absolute killing on parlays, like they always do. Parlays are the penny slot of sports betting. Very fun but also very dangerous. There's nothing wrong with betting the occasional parlay. But if you make it a common daily occurrence you are playing right into the books' hands. For this reason, bettors should avoid parlays and stick to individual flat betting.
Remember, if you have a five-team parlay and four legs hit but the final leg doesn't, you lose the entire parlay. But if you bet them all individually you would have gone 4-1 and turned roughly three units of profit.