Spending $1000 over an entire year on your favorite hobby seems like a reasonable investment. When that favorite hobby happens to be placing bets on sporting events / playing fantasy sports, it's an even better idea. After all, not many hobbies offer the potential for return on investment.
So, I allocated $1000 on January 1st to risk in 2011. Lucky for you, I'll track the progress here every week or two.
I have made four bets since the calendar flipped.
The first was a three team parlay on this weekend's Wildcard games: Jets ML w/ Ravens ML w/ Packers ML. Risk 25 to win 172.
The second was the Packers +3. Risk 100 to win 100.
After the Jets and Ravens hit, I had about an hour before the Packers game started. At this point, there were four potential outcomes:
Packers win outright: +272
Pack lose but cover: +75
Pack lose by 3: -25
Pack lose by 4 or more: -125
Losing the third game of a three-team parlay is infuriating. Couple that with the fact I had another 100 on the Pack covering, and it made sense for me to hedge. Since I put the Pack bet in, the line moved in my favor and sat at Philly -2.
My third bet, placed 15 minutes before kickoff, was Philly -2. Risk 72 to win 65. Now the scenarios were:
Packers win outright: +200
Pack lose by 1: +3
Pack lose by 2: +75
Pack lose by 3: +40
Pack lose by 4 or more: -60
I minimized my upside in exchange for minimizing the downsize, and now I would make money if the game was decided by a field goal either way.
As it turns out, the Pack won outright so I shouldn't have hedged but the game was much more enjoyable knowing I was protected.
My fourth bet was a $200 wager on fantasy basketball. If my team beats another particular team in the league, I win. If not, I lose. Simple but it ties up my money until April.
As of 1/13/11-
At risk: $200 (fantasy basketball)
Intriguing lines: Seattle ML +395, NY Jets ML +325, Green Bay +2.5, Atlanta Hawks 35/1 to win Eastern Conference, Memphis Grizzlies 70/1 to win Western Conference, South Carolina 50/1 to win 2012 BCS Title