Publication Date: August 22, 2023
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In this candid and highly anticipated memoir by the GOAT of sports betting, Billy Walters tells the full, larger-than-life story of how he became “the greatest and most controversial sports gambler ever” (ESPN)—and shares the secrets to his fiercely protected betting system with recreational gamblers everywhere.
Anybody can get lucky. Nobody controls the odds like Billy Walters. Widely regarded as “the Michael Jordan of sports betting,” Walters is a living legend in Las Vegas and among sports bettors worldwide. With an unmatched winning streak of thirty-six consecutive years, Walters has become fabulously wealthy by placing hundreds of millions of dollars a year in gross wagers, including one Super Bowl bet of $3.5 million alone. Competitors desperate to crack his betting techniques have tried hacking his phones, cloning his beepers, rifling through his trash, and bribing his employees. Now, after decades of avoiding the spotlight and fiercely protecting the keys to his success, Walters has reached the age where he wants to pass along his wisdom to future generations of sports wagerers.
Gambler is more than a traditional autobiography. In addition to sharing his against-all-odds American dream story, Walters reveals in granular detail the secrets of his proprietary betting system, which will serve as a master class for anyone who wants to improve their odds at betting on sports. Walters also breaks his silence about his long and complicated relationship with Hall of Fame professional golfer Phil Mickelson.
On a typical weekend gameday packed with college and pro sports, Walters will bet $10 million—a small sum for someone as wealthy as he is today, but an unbelievable fortune for the child who was raised by his grandmother in extreme poverty in rural Kentucky. By the age of nine, Walters became a shark at hustling pool and pitching pennies. As a young adult, he set records as a used-car salesman, hustled golf, and dabbled in bookmaking. He eventually moved to Las Vegas, where he revolutionized sports betting strategy and became a member of the famed Computer Group, the first syndicate to apply sophisticated algorithms and data analysis to sports gambling. He became extraordinarily wealthy while overcoming addictions and outmaneuvering organized crime figures made infamous by Martin Scorsese’s film Casino.
In Gambler, Walters passes along everything he’s learned about sports betting. First, he shows bettors how to mine the information we have at our fingertips to develop a sophisticated betting strategy and handicapping system of our own. He explains how even avid bettors often do not grasp all of the variables that go into making an informed wager—factors such as home field advantage, individual player values, injuries or illness, weather forecasts, each team’s previous schedule (bye weeks, multiple away games in a row, etc.), travel distance/difficulty, stadium quirks, turf types, and more. Not every bettor has access to Walters’s team of expert analysts, but every bettor can follow his guidelines on how to measure the detailed information available online and look for unique situations that could affect a game’s outcome more than usual. Variable by variable, Walters breaks down the formulas, point systems, and principles that he’s developed over decades of improving his craft.
A self-made man who’s repeatedly won it all, lost it all, and earned it all back again, Walters has lived a singular and wildly appealing American life, of the outlaw variety. Gambler is at once a gripping autobiography, a blistering tell-all, and an indispensable playbook for coming out on top.
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