Understanding Odds At Online Betting Sites

by SportsAdvisor | posted in Sports articles

Betting Odds

Betting odds at online betting sites can be confusing to the uninitiated person, but understanding how they work and what they mean is a crucial piece of information that any gambler should know before placing a wager. Although the terms may sound foreign and difficult to understand, with a little practice and study, anyone can learn how to read the betting lines and how to place wagers at sports betting sites. Below are some of the most common kinds of bets that a person is likely to encounter at sports betting sites.

Fractional Odds
One of the most common kinds of betting odds that a person will encounter when reading betting lines is called the fractional odd. For many novices, this type of odds is the most familiar. Fractional odds represent the ratio of the amount that can be won to the amount of the bet. The top number in the fraction indicates the potential winnings, while the bottom number denotes the size of the bet. By dividing the top number by the bottom number, gamblers can figure out the win ratio for their particular bet to calculate how much money can be won for every dollar bet. For example, in a horse race if the odds are listed as 5/2, dividing 5 by 2 equals 2.5. This means for every dollar bet, a winning ticket will pay $2.50 for every $1 bet. Sometimes, a heavy favorite will have odds like 1/3, where the ratio is 0.333333…, meaning that for every winning $1 bet, the gambler will win 33 cents.

Decimal Odds
Because the concept of fractions can be difficult for some people, sometimes online sports betting sites will list betting odds in the form of decimal odds. These odds are exactly the same as fractional odds, except that the ratio between the top and bottom numbers of the fractions has been calculated for the bettor. For example, a fractional betting off of 12/3 has a decimal odd of 4.00 because 12 divided by 3 is 4. To figure out how much money can be won per bet, a gambler simply has to multiply the amount that he bets by the decimal odd. For example, winning a $2 bet with 3.00 decimal odds yields a winning wager of $6.00.

Spread Betting
In sports when two teams meet, the home team is usually favored because of a number of factors like having the backing of the spectators, having familiarity with the conditions, and not having to deal with the stresses of traveling. In order to combat this and to encourage bettors to choose the underdog team, spread betting is used. In spread betting, the points spread in the amount of points that one team has to win by in order for a person to win the bet. A point spread is commonly printed like the following:

Apples +6
Oranges -6

Here, apples is the underdog by 6 points, meaning that for betting purposes, 6 points would be added to their final score to indicate who won the bet. For example, if a person selected Apples to win the game, and the actual final score was 10-6 in favor of the Oranges, he would still win the bet since the Oranges did not beat the apples by more than 6 points. If however, the score was 13-6 in favor of the Oranges, and the bettor selected the Oranges to win, he would have covered the spread since the margin of victory is greater than 6.

Money Line Bets

For those interested in betting online, one of the most common kinds of odds that is offered by sports betting sites is called a money line bet. These are commonly found in bets that involve two teams where point spreads are not involved. In a money line bet, the favorite is the team that has a negative sign (-) by the number, while the underdog is denoted by a plus sign (+). For example, consider the following money line bet:

Apples -120
Oranges +180

In this example, the Apples team is favored, while the Oranges team is the underdog. Reading this bet indicates that if a person bets on Apples to win, in order to win $100 on the bet, he would need to place a bet of $120. If a bettor chooses Oranges to win, and Oranges does in fact go on to win, a $100 bet will pay $180. An even odds match is denoted by teams having odds of +100 and -100 respectively.

Over Under Bets

When placing a bet on sports, another common kind of wager that can be made is called an over/under bet. Generally, this kind of bet requires a person to select whether or not the combined total score of both teams will be greater than or less than an arbitrary number set by the online betting sites. The over and under bets will also be accompanied by a multiplication factor that will show how much money can be won from winning the bet. For example, consider the following wager:

Apples vs. Oranges: Under 35 = 1.25, Over 35 = 1.50

If the combined total points of the Apples and Oranges is below 35 points, a person would win 1.25 times his wager if he bet on the under wager. If a person bet on the over bet and the score was greater than 35, he would win 1.5 times his bet.


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