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Do Online Sportsbooks Ban Winners?

April 18, 2024
Do sportsbooks ban players who win too much?

We all know a sportsbook loves a loser. If you are on a terrible losing streak and cannot seem to cobble together a win or two, the sportsbook is your best friend. They surely won’t intervene and try to stop you from continuing to wager. But what happens if you win on a regular basis? What if you are on a multi-week 20 out of 22 game win streak that sees no end in sight? Will online sportsbooks stop you? Will online sportsbooks ban you altogether?


Online Sportsbooks

Land based sportsbooks have been around for many decades. When Vegas was the king of everything sports betting, the government was still testing A bombs in the very same desert. Online sports betting, on the other hand, has only been available in some capacity for almost 30 years. In 1996, Intertops (Now EveryGame sportsbook) set up shop online and took bets from around the world.

The heady days of 90’s sports betting online were truly something to behold. Some folks refer to it as the “wild west of online sports betting”. This is because you never knew which sportsbook to trust, what would happen to your money when you sent it, if you would get paid if you won, and the list goes on.

Online sportsbook reviews didn’t begin to show up until around the year 2000. And even then you didn’t know if the reviews were legit or the website was simply shilling for the book because they got paid to. We have come leaps and bounds since those days yet people still get suckered in by bad sportsbooks because they simply don’t spend the 5 minutes it takes to perform the due diligence.


To Ban or Not to Ban? – That is the Question

Sportsbooks Limiting Players

Land based sportsbooks and casinos in Las Vegas will never ban you for winning too much money. They have more money than you and they will outlast you. They understand it is a numbers game. “Keep them playing and they will give it all back and more”, that is the basic philosophy. You are not going to bankrupt MGM. I think of this scene from the movie Casino when making this point.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for online sportsbooks. They do not have the bankroll of MGM. Some of them are flying by the seat of their pants. Some of them lack the patience and understanding of the math associated with sports betting. And yes, some of them will limit your bet size or ban you altogether. They panic and somehow think you are going to go on winning forever. They don’t understand or care about streaks.

BetMania limited a player to $250 per wager after the player worked $1K deposit (plus $1K free play bonus) up to over $7K on a hot streak. They did this not only to limit the amount he could win, but also so it would be very hard for him to hit his 18X hot streak. The player claimed that he went on to win about $17K despite the sportsbooks efforts to stymie him and says that the bet size limit encouraged him to play more games but he handicapped them all with the same high level of effort.

Sportsbooks Banning Players

We have seen countless scummy sportsbook operations pop up, operate for a few years, then close shop with everyone’s money. It’s the online sportsbook equivalent to a what a “rug pull” is in the crypto coin/ NFT world. We are always on the lookout for possible sportsbook rug pulls and keep our readers in the loop about them. We are never too quick to award a new sportsbooks with a high rating for this very reason.

Reputable and highly rated sportsbooks DO NOT BAN PLAYERS FOR WINNING. You can bet all you want to your hearts content at a sportsbook like and to them it’s business as usual. In fact, you will rack up a bunch of rewards with their rewards program which you can cash in later for special bonus offers and free gear. It’s all based on your total handle (amount wagered win or lose).

Even Big Name Online Sportsbooks Will Ban You

Some of the very same sportsbooks that bombard you with TV ads all day are known to ban you as well. This is because they probably have some low-level manager over your account who panics and is given the power to cut out players they find to be too risky, all in the name of “risk management”. There are claims online about some of the biggest and most popular online sportsbooks in the United States market banning players after they won too much.

Sportsbooks don’t legally need to have a reason to stop doing business with you. They are just like any business in that they have a right to stop associating with you. However, they should be expected to pay you out if you win before cutting you off. This is so as long as you haven’t broken any of their house rules, which may include, but are not limited to:

  • Having multiple accounts
  • Suspicious online play
  • Abuse of customer service personnel
  • Using a VPN to play from an area where action is prohibited


Actions You Can Take to Keep from Getting Banned

There is a way to operate with online sportsbooks that will help ensure they don’t review your account and decide to ban you. Winning too much money fairly and honestly should not be one of them. But here is a list of things you can do to keep yourself out of the spotlight and avoid being limited or getting banned by the sportsbook:

  1. Don’t Max Out Every Bonus Offer – If you deposit the maximum for every new generous bonus offer and win a bunch of money, this will surely draw attention and get the sportsbook to re-think their relationship with you. Only take 50% or 75% of the maximum allowed. Skipping some bonus offers is a good idea too.
  2. Don’t Clean Out Your Account When You Win Big – Leave some money in the account to show your account manager that you plan on continuing to play there and do not plan on winning and moving on. Remember, every sportsbook account has an account manager.
  3. Don’t Bet the Maximum Every Time – Sprinkling your bet selection with smaller wagers and parlays that you don’t care if they win or not show that you are capable of making bone-head decisions and that you aren’t sure about your wagers all the time. Just for fun, put $20 on a 10 team parlay and expect to lose it.
  4. Use Multiple Sportsbooks – If you are a person who places large wagers, have two or three different sportsbooks where you spread the action out. You don’t want to look like you are trying to take the sportsbook for all they are worth. Sportsbooks prefer a “regular Joe” type of player who bets $100-$500 per game.
  5. Play Multiple Sports – You may specialize in winning college football but it doesn’t hurt to throw in a hockey or baseball bet to mix it up every once in a while. The more sports you bet, the less anxious your account manager will be.

It’s an art of winning big while appearing to be a regular Joe on a lucky run. Most good sportsbooks don’t care if you win if they think there is a chance you will keep playing and lose it all back.

Finally, use only the best online sportsbooks. If you play at sportsbook which professional sportsbook review sites deem to be trustworthy, you can probably count on that sportsbook treating you fairly. If at any time you don’t feel like the sportsbook is treating you well, reach out to that same sportsbook review site who referred you and express your grievances, but only after you have tried to resolve them with the sportsbook customer service. Chances are they have a relationship with that sportsbook and can run your issue up the flagpole through a different channel. If it doesn’t get resolved, then the review site may downgrade that sportsbook’s rating, something which the sportsbook absolutely doesn’t want in today’s competitive online sports betting market.


Final Words

Play responsibly at your sportsbook. Don’t look to take advantage of every single angle. Appear to be a little reckless at times. Treat their customer service agents with respect and patience. Realize that this company is offering you a service that both sides are trying to profit from. Just like any business transaction, betting at a sportsbook is a dance which includes respect, balance and money exchanges. If you are having a great experience at a sportsbook, make sure to leave positive reviews at sportsbook review sites. The more business the book gets, the less they worry about big winners. Big winners go with the territory of operating an online sportsbook. Ideally, the sportsbooks would like 2 or more big losers for every big winner they have.




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