My blog



  • Update
    • Post in category: Announcement by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    Seeing there were a couple of new subscribers who joined this week who may not be yet familiar with the way this service operates I wanted to post just a quick update.


    As you know we have had no picks for more than a week now but as older members can testify this is absolutely normal. As I have said many times before there are always periods during the year in which the value simply isn't there in the games I'm analyzing and I am never going to take speculative bets just for the sake of it. We may win or we may lose but the bets we are taking are always thoroughly researched. That I can guarantee.


    Having said that, I suspect it's only a matter of time before things get more busy again so stay tuned!  




    • Post in category: Last Month Review by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    I suppose there are two ways you can look at October. You could either look at it as glass half-full or glass half-empty. Half-empty because we were up 18 units early in the month but we ended up with "just" 12 units of profit so that is slightly disappointing. Half-full because well, 12 units of profit is still an excellent reward for a single month and obviously you can't win every bet you take. That's just the way it is. You are going to win some, you are going to lose some.

    They say timing is everything and last month proved exactly that point again and again.
    We backed Reggiana twice just at the right time when they were about to bounce back from a 0-2 start and in fact they went on to win 4 straight games since then. Trieste's win at Sassari @6.50 and Obradoiro's at Murcia @4.69 were also very rewarding as I warned that neither Sassari were as good as advertised, nor Obradoiro as bad as their record suggested. Especially for Obradoiro I'm quite satisfied to have read the game so accurately. As I was saying in my preview for the match:
    ''Obradoiro have struggled on the defensive end but that was to be expected as their main weapon will once again be their prowess from the 3 point line which can make them unpredictable when the shots are going in especially to teams with a less than optimal defensive efficiency. Murcia have certainly not distinguished themselves in that regard as they are a team that plays at above average pace, possess some lethal shooters but have also some pronounced defensive vulnerabilities. The rebounding battle will probably be the key here. If Obradoiro show some improvement in this area and control the tempo of the game, they will stand a serious chance of escaping with the victory."
    And that's precisely what happened. Obradoiro were mediocre defensively yet again but they shot extremely well from the 3 point line (just take a look at Magee's performance here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-LUN7JXJ88) and the rebounding battle was pretty balanced (40-37), so that was enoung for Obradoiro to escape with the victory.


    Of course talking about timing there is the other face of it. It seems we challenged Cantu (against Trento), Cremona (against Milano) and Unics Kazan (against Badalona) at the worse possible time. After a series of poor results and performances, each one of these teams ''decided'' to play their best game of the season exactly when we defied them! So, very frustrating indeed...


    Anyway, last month was at least a step forward as we won back all the losses of September but I plan to keep on pushing to further improve our position so let's see what November brings.




    • Post in category: Last Month Review by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    Last month has been a big disappointment, plain and simple. Looking back and reviewing our picks, I think we were caught on the wrong side of some abnormal, inconsistent and even crazy early season results. I've said it before, this period can be a double-edged sword sometimes in the sense that it's tough for everyone (bookies and punters) judging teams based only on reputation, talent, summer moves and preseason games without any statistical data and few if any official matches played. That means there will be some great betting opportunities but the margin of error in judgement will be bigger as well. In any case, the second part of the year, September to December, traditionally has always been profitable and hopefully the trend will continue this year as well.

    Needless to say, the next 3 months will be delicate and crucial but I'm really motivated for the challenge ahead. But now it's not the time for many words, it's time to get back to work!




  • August
    • Post in category: Last Month Review by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

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  • I'm back
    • Post in category: Announcement by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    Hello guys, I'm back as the World Cup is about to begin this Sunday and I'm already at work studying the teams despite some of the rosters have yet to be announced.

    Pinnacle have already priced up the first day's matches and there is a game that has immediately caught my eye and should be our first pick for the new season. Just checking some last details at the moment as I want to leave no stone unturned. I should be ready within half hour so please stay tuned.




    • Post in category: Overview by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    Evaluating a tipster's performance and choosing the right one(s) to follow can be a surprisingly complicated task if you don't know beforehand what exactly you should be looking for.


    So let's begin with the first part. A tipster's results and statistics. I'm sure you all are aware of the obvious performance indicators like yield and units won (profit) but never forget to look for context. A 20% yield is excellent but if it was achieved after only 30 or 40 picks or just a couple of months of tipping, it's pretty much useless to draw conclusions from as it may be random. A 20% yield in some obscure sport or league with odds that nobody can match is also irrelevant. The same goes for profit and units won. A 300 units profit tally sounds impressive at first but what if I tell you it was achieved after 2 years with a 600 units starting bankroll? Still a decent enough profit but certainly nothing to get all excited about, right?


    Setting aside yield and profit, the next thing you should focus on is how easy it is to replicate or at least get close to the official results. This will depend on the liquidity of the market. It's one thing advising bets at Pinnacle on a popular league like the NBA and quite another advising bets on the Swedish second division with odds available only with a couple of obscure and unreliable bookmakers. Obviously the more we move closer to the start of a match, the biggest the liquidity gets and the more easy will be to catch odds close to the advised price. In other words advising a bet a week before the match takes place when markets are still immature, is pointless unless we are talking about the most popular of the competitions like the Champions League (football). So as a rule of thumb if you want to know if you will be able to match the advised odds, simply consider the popularity of the league(s) and time of picks release.    


    Having established that the performance indicators of the tipster are genuinely interesting and realistically you can be hopeful of getting close to the official results, there are several other secondary but not least important parameters you should be considering. Experience-the number of years the service has been active, the total number of picks and average bets per month, average odds the tipster is dealing with, biggest losing streaks-drawdowns and volatility of the service, hit rate, cost of subscription and minimum required bank (capital) to follow, time of picks release, how professional the tipster seems and how consistent he is in his overall approach, customer support... The list just goes on! Each one of these may be more or less relevant to your situation and preferences. For example I am naturally averse to big drawdowns but I don't mind a smaller hit rate. You may be the exact opposite. So pay attention to what is important for you.


    Now comes the crucial part. How to decide if a tipster service is RIGHT FOR YOU. There are dozens of expert and profitable tipsters out there but that does not mean they will all fit your preferences, schedule, circumstances and general lifestyle. For instance you may fancy a tipster who averages over 100 picks/month but will you be able to handle the workload, placing several bets each day just for this service alone? What about a tipster who only advices picks late at night? You may like him a lot but if you can't stay up until late to place the bets, he is probably going to be useless to you! Another example. Consider my own service. If you are based in a country where Pinnacle don't have a license to operate (like the U.K.), it doesn't make much sense to follow me. So first thing you should do is decide what will work for you and will fit nicely into your daily schedule so you know exactly what to look for.


    This brief guideline should help you limit your shortlist of tipsters you are considering following and simplify your choice. Before committing to a tipster service long-term, it's always a good idea to take a short trial to see if everything is as you expect it to be and get a little more comfortable and familiar with the service.
    And a final piece of advice. Always have realistic expectations of the tipster services you decide to follow. No tipster is a miracle worker, noone can guarantee a short-term profit and everybody will suffer losing periods. Accept that as a fact and set a realistic long-term profit goal that reflects the tipster's characteristics and results. The rest will follow naturally.




    • Post in category: Overview by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    This is my 4th year with Tipstersplace and by now you probably know how selective this service is, averaging less than 100 picks/year. Seeing that we are already in summer with no action expected for the next few weeks and considering I do get asked frequently why I have chosen this strategy, I thought now it's the ideal time to expand a little on the matter.


    I will start answering with another, seemingly irrelevant, question. What is the worst thing that can happen to a bettor? Losing streaks and drawdowns. Let's face it. Nobody wants to deal with them. They cost money and perhaps most importantly, peace of mind. You can try all you want to rationalize during a bad run saying that this is temporary and will soon pass (which is usually true by the way!) Unless you are a robot or a stone cold killer which I will assume you are not :) , you will still get negatively affected to a degree, depending on your previous betting experience and on how lengthy and deep the losing run turns out to be. Which in turn can lead you to a series of bad decisions, like increasing your stakes to chase back losses or abandoning your tipster altogether without any valid reason whatsoever. 

     
    Losing streaks and drawdowns may be unavoidable but there are two ways to limit their extent and duration to make them more manageable.
    First you have to maintain a big edge over the bookmakers with the bets you take. Unavoidably a service with a 20% yield will be less volatile than one with a 5% yield. Now don't get me wrong. A service with a 5% yield may still produce a big profit especially if it has a high volume of bets (turnover). But here it's not only profit that we are seeking but the smoother path to it as well (smaller drawdowns).
    Second you have to avoid over-staking. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that betting 10% of your bank in every single bet you take is extremely risky and may lead to huge drawdowns and even worse to a loss of your entire bank.


    Now let's get back to the original question. Why did I choose this strategy of being highly selective with my picks? The answer probably becomes much more obvious now. Quite simply to limit these losing streaks and drawdowns as much as possible in order to smooth our path to profit without huge headaches.

    Let me explain what this means in practical terms.
    Simple. I only take bets where it's clear to me that we have a huge advantage and odds are undoubtedly in our favour. To bring up an example, I may find a bet at 4.00 that I would have priced slightly lower at 3.80. I will almost certainly NOT take that bet because I may be slightly wrong in my estimation and the margin of error is very small. Let's not forget that the true odds (probabilities) for any bet are ALWAYS subjective. On the other hand finding a bet at 4.00 that I would have priced at 3.00, is exactly the type of bet I would pick for obvious reasons. Assuming my assessment of the true odds of these bets is correct and ignoring the bookmaker's vig for simplicity's sake, the first bet has a 26,3% probability of success while the second one has a 33,3%. What this means is that we are constantly taking bets with significant bigger probabilities of success than those implied and even if you take lower odds than those advised (say 3.75), you still secure great value with your bet. Also don't get fooled by the seemingly small difference of success between these two bets. The 7% difference may seem small but cumulatively over hundreds of bets, becomes enormous.


    Finally combined with my selection strategy, there is the staking method I have used since the start of the service (1 unit as a standard stake and 1,5 units in case of bets with higher esimated EV-expected value) plus the use of handicap bets with increased hit rate, which help minimize drawdowns without overly compromising profits. As I have mentioned repeatedly though, feel free to employ a more aggressive approach regarding stakes, as long as you are comfortable with the bigger risk (and drawdowns) involved. It all depends on your risk profile.


    Hopefully I have shed some light on the way I operate. Truth be told, this is not a popular strategy. It requires patience and discipline following a system which produces so few bets during the course of the year but the upsides - ease of following and a relatively smooth path to profit being the most important, more than make up for it. As far as I'm concerned nothing beats making a profit while maintaining a peace of mind and without having to be in front of your pc all day placing bets.




  • May Review
    • Post in category: Last Month Review by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    Hello everyone. Just a couple of bets last month but both successful so a few more units in the bag. The season is almost over with only a few playoff matches remaining and considering that there is never great value in the championship deciding games, I decided to wrap things up for now and also give you an update for future plans and schedule.


    Next season begins much earlier this year due to the World Cup in China (31 August - 15 September) in which we will obviously get involved, so officially I will be back at August 30th and then go non-stop from that point for almost 9 months until June of 2020.


    This year has been relatively quiet so far regarding the number of picks but as usual, expect things to get much busier after August. Besides we are already in a nice position with a double digit profit for 2019 and hopefully you managed to at least get close to the official numbers.


    During this summer there will be no picks obviously but it's a nice opportunity to post some articles I've had in mind for some time now, including some insight into my betting strategy and also some general advice on tipster selection and management which I'm sure you will find very interesting.


    That's all for the time being. Expect to hear from me again later this month with a new post as promised and I wish you all a relaxing summer!



  • Update
    • Post in category: Overview by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    Hello guys. Seeing that we have fallen into a period in which I have advised no picks for almost a month now and I have received several emails especially from new subscribers wondering what is going on, I thought it would be a good opportunity to explain the situation a little better.


    Firstly, if you haven't done it already, I suggest reading last month's review as I give a brief overview of the current situation. On a more general note though I would like to emphasize again some points, especially for the new subscribers.(Welcome on board by the way!)


    This is a highly selective service, meaning annually you should expect 85-100 picks spread across the 8 to 9 months of the basketball season which usually starts from late September and finishes in early June. That doesn't mean those picks will be evenly distributed though. We may have months with just a handful of picks like last April and months with nearly 20 picks as in October 2016 and November 2017. Again it depends on several factors such as schedule density, matchups, odds etc. Usually September to December is the busiest and most profitable period for the service and we have always ended with a double digit profit these last 3 years during those stretches.


    Taking all this into consideration, you simply have to accept that there will be extended periods of inactivity during the course of the season. In fact 1 or 2 weeks with no picks advised are quite common as older members can testify. Having said that, it's also true that these last few weeks have been very quiet indeed and the longest period we have been inactive since the service started. So I fully appreciate how this can seem strange and even frustrating to some members.
    What I want to underline again here is that the usual work of researching the matches is always there regardless if it produces any tips or not but as I have stated repeatedly in the past, I simply don't compromise when the odds are concerned. I don't take speculative bets. If the value ISN'T there I don't get involved just as if the value IS there I have no problem taking 10-20 bets/month. That's just the way I work. Speaking of which, expect to see a separate post explaining my betting philosophy and strategy in more detail during the summer.


    Finally, one more thing you should be aware of. This is my 4th year tipping at Tipstersplace but I have been using the same strategy privately for many more years now. I know it works, period. The only thing you need to worry about is placing the bets, have patience and leave the rest to me. I hope this helps clarify the situation a little better. Thanks again for your trust and support!



  • April review
    • Post in category: Last Month Review by tipster: Demetrio Giotti

    A small profit for the month but April was pretty quiet and we are in the midst of a period in which the schedule is light and at the same time either the matchups or odds are simply not favourable for betting. Times like this usually happen once or twice every year and this is clearly one of these periods.


    I fully understand that this apparent inactivity can be slightly frustrating but the service is anything but inactive during these times. You see, regardless of if there are any picks or not, the usual work of rigorously researching the games is always there but I simply have to draw the line somewhere especially as far as the odds are concerned. Sunday's game between Badalona and Barcelona was a prime example of this. I had identified the game since last Thursday seeing the opening odds of 3.65 for Badalona at Bet365 and was waiting for Pinnacle's opening line as well before advising the bet. Unfortunately the odds crashed everywhere in the meantime and as a result the opening line at Pinnacle was at just 2.54 which held to value, hence the "no bet" I decided at that point. During the course of the year there will be several cases like this one which obviously you can't be aware of but my point is that despite not producing any tips, the necessary work is always going to be there.


    Not much else to report, let's see if May turns out to be a little more interesting from a betting standpoint. Take care guys!