Put down the remote, turn off the TV, and pick up your smartphone. Now, ask yourself, “Do I really need to watch another heartless pitch from an overpaid sports announcer?” If the answer is yes, then you’re probably wondering what an Asian handicap is. Let’s find out together.
What Is an Asian Handicap?
An Asian handicap, also known as an Asian poker handicap, is a way to level the playing field when it comes to betting on sports. It’s more popular in countries like Hong Kong where gambling is legal but frowned upon by the government, but it can be used in any sport where getting a edge over the competition is possible. It’s especially popular among European countries and North America where soccer, tennis, and golf are widely played. The idea behind the handicap is to give each player or team an even chance of winning regardless of their nationality. In the case of a soccer match, this might mean giving the Asian team a 5-yard headstart or letting the goalkeeper know he has to save 5-percent more shots. Think of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors and their remarkable season last year. They went 73-9 with a league-record 22–0 home record. That’s a ridiculous win percentage. In that same season, the Los Angeles Lakers went 62-20 with a 10-game winning streak. They’re still waiting for their first win this year.
Why Is It Also Known As An Asian Poker Handicap?
A lot of people mistakenly believe that an Asian handicap is used only in the context of sports. They may also think it has something to do with Asian poker, but that’s not the case either. An Asian handicap can be applied to any sport where being at a disadvantage is a possibility. It’s named after the Asian game of poker because that’s often the application it is used for. Just like in the case of Asian soccer, for example, where the headstart might be given based on the nationality of the team running the race (i.e., the Chinese soccer team gets a 5-yard headstart because they’re Asian), individuals can play against each other based on the same theory. In the case of Asian poker, individuals are dealt a hand of cards and then play based on the ranking of the cards. When using an Asian handicap in poker, the headstart would typically be applied to allow for more effective betting. If a player has a strong hand he might consider holding it back until later in the game when his opponent’s cards are lower. The idea is to try to get an edge over your competition regardless of their nationality, not to pit one group of people against another.
How Is It Calculated?
The process of calculating an Asian handicap varies based on the sport. In the case of Asian soccer, for example, it can be a pretty simple process. First, the result of each match is recorded. Next, the strength of each team, based on individual and collective statistics, such as goals scored and conceded, is determined. Finally, the handicap for each team is calculated by totaling the points scored by that team and dividing it by the number of matches played. In the NBA, it’s a bit more complex because the league uses a formula to determine the winning percentage of each team. In this case, the handicap is simply the difference in points scored per 100 possessions between the team with the better record and the team with the worse record. In the same way, the Los Angeles Lakers currently have a handicap of 14.5 because they finished the 2019–20 season with a 3–17 record while the Golden State Warriors went 16–8.
When And Where Does It Apply?
The term ‘Asian Handicap’ is used most commonly in reference to sports where results are determined by the relative strength of each team rather than by the nationality of the athletes. In the case of soccer, it is usually applied to level the playing field by giving the Asian team a headstart or letting the goalkeeper know he has to save a certain number of shots. Other notable examples include equestrian sports, where the handicap can be used to level the field by giving a fixed penalty for fouls committed by either team, and speedway, where the field is divided into lanes with riders starting on the inside and moving around a large oval shaped track. The advantage of using an Asian handicap in these situations is that it eliminates the element of luck and gives every player an equal chance of winning.
In many cases, it is used in combination with another form of handicap such as the well-known red and yellow handicap in English Football. The red and yellow handicap is given based on the opponent’s record in the previous season. In this way, a team that lost a lot of games the previous year will have a bigger handicap and thus a smaller chance of winning than a team that won a lot of games. The red and yellow handbrake is used in conjunction with an Asian handicap to ensure that a team has an equal chance of winning no matter what happens in the future. In the 2022 World Cup, for example, Spain fielded an All-White team. This was a clear violation of the spirit of racial equality that the tournament is supposed to promote. To comply with the law, the Spanish team was forced to field a combination of at least two non-white players. The red and yellow handicap was used to determine the number of spots available to non-whites and thus the winning percentage of the Spanish team. This prevented the All-White team from completely ruining Spain’s chance of winning the World Cup.