February 7, 2024

The Fatigue Factor by Sport

Understanding fatigue can be useful for lots of bets but it’s msot frequently applied to game outcomes like money lines, point spreads or over/under, as well as individual player prop bets, like how many points a certain person will score.

When accessing how big a role fatigue will play, you can start by looking at the three main factors we mentioned above: schedule, amount of travel, and how much a player is being used. These three factors have the largest effect on the outcome of games and should therefore have the largest effetc on the bets you are placing.

Here will briefly talked about why the NBA and NHL are the most grueling sports that induce fatigue on their athletes, but here’s a closer look at how all four of the major leagues in North America are affected by fatigue and the specific ways it can help you betting.

Fatigue and Betting on NBA

As mentioned before, fatigue affects NBA players mainly based on the heavy travel schedule, the amount of playing time for star players and the amount of lower-body injuries suffered from the demanding nature of the game.

Largest NBA Factor: Injuries Affecting Star Players

Other than baseball, basketball teams rely most heavily on superstars for overall game performances. We’ve seen how players like LeBron James and Steph Curry can completely take over games.

What we’re also seeing is coaches starting to rest their star players more on back-to-back games. Kawhi Leonard of the Toronto Raptors is an example of one star who often doesn’t play in back-to-back games.

If you can predict when an influential player will be sitting out due to fatigue it can make a big difference to the game’s outcome.

Fatigue and Betting on NHL

For our money the NHL is the most grueling sport in North America in terms of fatigue. The physical nature of the game combined with a heavy travel schedul can be brutal for athletes.

Largest Factor: Playing Through Injuries

This is a common refrain in football but it might actually be more common in hockey. Many of these athletes grow up thinking that playing hurt makes them a warrior. That’s extremely true in hockey, especially during the playoffs.

Former NHLer Kevin Bieksa said in an interview that during the Stanley Cup playoffs, he would often play through injuries without telling management or the media.

Many NHLers have echoed those same sentiments. If you’re noticing a player in the NHL that isn’t playing up to snuff, that could often be because he’s playing hurt without telling anyone.

Fatigue and Betting in MLB

The MLB can be a bit deceiving when trying to determine how much fatigue factors into games. Although teams play more games than any other league in North America, it’s by far the least physically demanding physically.

Largest Factor: Innings Pitched for Starting Pitchers

The magiv number for the top starting pitcher seems to be 200 innings pitched per season. Usually, that number is reached over about 30-35 games.

When a starter starts to surpass that 200 inning per season mark, it is a sign of two things: Either that pitcher is extremely good or he’s being overplayed. There have been examples of managers who start to reduce playing time for their starters when they start reaching that threshold, in some cases the pitchers are completely shut down for the season.

Fatigue and Betting in NFL

Although the NFL has the shortes schedule of all major leagues in North America, the sport itself is arguably the most demanding. You could make the argument for NHL hockey being as demanding on a game-to-game basis, but it’s devinitely the NFL where most injuries occur.

That’s more of a sport factor than a fatigue factor, but there’s no doubt that a sport as physically demanding as football is exhausting for athletes.

Largest Factor: Injuries to Crucial, Non-star Players

Often, it’s injuries to non-star players that are the big difference-makers in the NFL. Sure, injuries to star quarterbacks, running backs and receivers makes a difference, but it’s injuries to the offensive lineman that tend to affect the outcome of games on a regular basis.

There are numerous examples of talented teams who have squandered opportunities because their offensive line couldn’t keep them in games. Bottom line? Make sure you check the injury report before making your bets on the NFL.

How Some Temas & Players Work to Combat Fatigue

We mentioned before the example of the Vancouver Canucks in the NHL. Former general manager Mike Gillis was one of the first managers in the league to publicly discuss his use of sleep doctors and other research.

Since the Canucks face more travel than most North American teams, they’re already at a disadvantage when it comes to fighting fatigue.

We’re seeing other professional sports teams find new ways to conquer fatigue too. The NBA’s Dallas Mavericks and the MLB’s Boston Red Sox are working to conquer fatigue by working with the bedding company, BedGear, to get their players top of the line custom-made pillows and bed gear.

Implications of Fatigue on Betting Odds

Some players are better at managing their fatigue than others and knowing who’s particularly good or bad at it can give you an edge. The challenge is that it’s tough to figure out who bounces back and who doesn’t.

Stories to trickle into the mainstream from time to time. One came from the Washington Post in 2017, when they told a story about how Washington Capitals forward T.J. Oshie uses an Accelerated Recovery Program (ARP) device. The machine is attached to the body via small patches, and then electrical currents are sent through the body.

According to the article, at least 75 NHL players currently use the device. Oshie, in particular, was signed to a contract in 2017 that many deemed an overpayment, but the winger was instrumental in helping the Washington Capitals win their first Stanley Cup in 2018.

The logic is simple with sports betting and fatigue: the more you immerse yourself into knowledge about athletes in a sport, the better your bets are likely to be. Playing fantasy sports is also a valuable tool for gaining insights into specific players.

The Bottom Line? Fatigue can play a factor in your bets

Understand fatigue can help you make better bets but there’s no secret formula that’s guaranteed to win every time.

Here are some of the main points that you should keep in mind when factoring in fatigue with your bets.

  • The physical nature of certain sports, heavier travel schedules or a coach overplaying an athlete are the main factors of fatigue in sports
  • The NBA and NHL are the msot grueling sports for fatigue since there is a decent mix of physicality and travel in both leagues
  • Although there are many different factors for fatigue, there are more pressing specifics of fatigue that sports bettors should know about, depending on the league they bet on.
  • Watch for teams playing back-to-back games, three games in four nights, etc
  • Certain players and teams do a better jobof handling fatigue than others, so pay attention for clues.
  • There are some exceptions where fatigue might not be a huge factor, such as against teams that are overly rested and possibly rusty.

Now that you have a better grasp on how fatigue might affect your bets, it is time to put your knowledge into action. If sports betting isn’t yet legalized in your state, sit tight and keep studying. Chances are good that it’s coming soon !

Good Luck !

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