Debating the greatest sports rivalry of all time is like being forced to choose between your favorite children. Well, sort of. Every professional sport has a historic rivalry. Whether it’s the New Yorks Yankees and Boston Red Sox, the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics or the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears, rivalries are what makes sports so special to watch, and in many cases, to bet on. So, which one is your favorite?
Rivalries Video Series
Rivalries bring out the best in certain teams. It doesn’t matter if one club is in first and the other last, when two rivals face off, there’s more on the line than pride and victory. It comes down to bragging rights — not just one the playing field between professional athletes, but also among fan bases that pay big bucks to watch rival teams square off — especially when something’s at stake.
Our Biggest Sports Rivalries video series engages fans and bettors alike to discover which ones are the greatest of all time.
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How To Bet On Sports Rivalries
Make sure you follow the trends and keep your emotions out of it when betting on sports rivalries. Find out how the two teams have fared against each other in recent games, delve into which is the hotter team. Does one team play better on the road or at home against their arch nemesis and what does the injury story tell you? Is one team in a funk, low on confidence and struggling to find form? These are all questions you should ask yourself when betting on the most intense rivalries.
One team might have the historical advantage but haven't won in four previous encounters. Make sure you take these type of things into account before placing your wagers.
More Sporst Rivalries
The Yankees and Red Sox rivalry, which spans more than 115 years, is one of the greatest head-to-head matchups in professional sports to this day. The two sides have met more than 2,150 times, with the Yankees winning more than 1,800 games against the Red Sox during that span.
The first encounter between the two storied franchises was on April 26, 1901 when the Yankees were still known as the Baltimore Orioles. New York’s 22-1 victory over the BoSox in 2000 still stands as the largest margin of victory between the rivals.
For more than 86 years, the Red Sox dealt with the Curse of the Bambino — a championship drought superstition that followed the club after it sold star player Babe Ruth to the Yankees. Ruth went on to have great success in New York, going on to win four more World Series rings. The Red Sox finally broke the longstanding curse in 2004 when they rallied back from a three-game deficit against the Yankees in the American League Championship Series, eventually going on to win their first World Series title since 1918.
But this rivalry between two of the NBA’s most storied franchises began even before those hall of famers were involved. The Lakers and Celtics first clashed in November 1948 — the beginning of a heated matchup that would span for decades to come. The franchises have met in 12 NBA Finals, with the Celtics winning nine of those championships. However, the Lakers have captured three of the last four NBA Finals meetings between the two clubs, including in 2010 when playoff MVP Kobe Bryant guided Los Angeles to its second straight crown and fifth in that decade.
But wait; there are other rivalries worth mentioning in professional sports.
The most heated rivalries may come between two teams, for the most part. But some of the best head-to-head clashes also come in individual sports such as tennis. Take Roger Federer versus Rafael Nadal for instance.
The two tennis stars have met in nine Grand Slam finals, with Nadal holding the edge with six hard-fought victories during that span. However, Federer still remains tennis’ greater singles player with 18 Grand Slam titles compared to Nadal’s 14. The two clashed in the 2017 Australian Open final when the 35-year-old Federer defeated Nadal in a five-set thriller.
Another heated matchup bettors should definitely try to cash in on is the Dallas Cowboys versus New York Giants rivalry. America’s Team holds the all time series advantage with 62 victories but the matchup has been closely contested over the last few seasons, with the Giants squeaking out three straight hard-fought victories in 2015 and 2016 against their NFC East Division rivals. The Giants tend to perform better on home soil, where two of those victories game at MetLife Stadium.
With these two rivals facing off twice a year, there’s usually more at stake later in the season, making for tighter battles and closer scores.
Everyone will always have a different opinion on what the greatest rivalry actually is in professional sports, but these are just a few that have left fans — and especially bettors — at the edge of their seats.
All set to put a wager on your favorite rivalry? First watch our video series revolving around some of the greatest rivalries and then select one of these major online sportsbooks to place your bets.
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