Types of Bets

Sports betting can be a tough thing to figure if you are new to the game.  There are a whole lot of different betting options out there, and if you are checking out all of the options it may be confusing, but have no fear because we’re here to break down the different types of betting options that you’ll have out there.  Remember that some of the betting options will vary in terms of their name by the different sports, and some sports handle their bets differently.  For example, baseball and hockey are going to have lines that are pretty much set at -1.5 for the favorite and +1.5 for the underdog, and the odds are going to vary from there.  But for sports like the NFL and NBA, the line is going to constantly be moving, and the odds are going to stay more consistent.  We’ll explain more of this below as we get into the different types of bets throughout the sports though.

Point Spread or Run Line

We are going to include these two together, mainly because they are similar in many ways.  The idea here is that you are picking one side of the bet for a team to either win by more than the point spread, or lose by less than the point spread.  For example, in the point spread in the NFL, if the Dallas Cowboys are playing the New York Giants and are -4, in order for you to win that bet if you take the Cowboys, they must beat the Giants by more than four in order to get the win.  The odds are going to stay consistent here for the most part, and if quite a few bets are getting placed on one side, then the line will move from there.

The run line and goal line are pretty much the same idea in the sense that you have to pick a side and have them cover that.  So if the New York Yankees were playing the Boston Red Sox and the Yankees were -1.5, the odds may be -140 as they are pretty big favorites in this spot.  In order to win the bet here though the Yankees would have to win by two runs or more.  The same thing can be said about soccer and hockey as well with the goal lines.

Straight Bet

The straight bet in sports betting is exactly what you would imagine.  This is where you are simply betting on a team to win the game straight up, with no worries about the point spread or goal line/run line.  While this is an easier bet if you are taking the favorite, the odds definitely take a hit if you choose to bet on the favorite straight up.  For example, with the point spread a team might be -110, but if you bet them straight it could be more around -130, -140, or even more if they are a bigger favorite.  Straight bets on underdogs can be a great option though if you find a team who is getting points and could win the game outright.  You will get BETTER odds for a straight bet on an underdog, so where they may be -110 at +4 points, betting them straight could pay out something like +140.

Over/Under Bets

Over/under bets can also be called total bets, and they relate to pretty much any sport that you can imagine.  Your job with a total bet is to project the total number of points, runs, or goals that will happen in the game.  There is going to be a number set on the game and you are going to either take the over or under on that number.  So for the NBA, the total may be around 195 points, and it is going to vary depending on the two teams that are playing, and of course their offensive and defensive numbers.  For soccer you are going to find that the total number will be around 2.5 to 3.5 mainly though, and the odds are going to move around a bit.

Parlay Bets

Parlays are going to include either the point spread, straight bets, or totals bets.  The key factor here in a parlay is that it is going to include multiple teams and the odds are going to continue to go up with the more teams that you include in your bet.  The main thing you need to remember here though is that in order to win a parlay, you are going to have to hit every single bet that is included in it.  These are much harder to hit than a standard bet, which explains why the odds can be so large on betting a parlay.  Be sure to only include your top bets in a parlay.

Teaser Betting

Teaser betting is a great option that many sports bettors actually overlook at times.  The idea behind a teaser bet is that you are going to be able to move the line on a game by a set number of points, but it must include more than one single bet.  The odds aren’t as good on a teaser per team, because you are getting a better line, but the games are definitely easier to hit and they make for great betting options.  Teasers work similar to parlays where you must hit every bet in the teaser in order to win your bet, and even if you go something like 7 for 8 in wins, you still lose the bet.  In football the line will move either 6, 6.5, or 7 points, and in basketball the line can move either 4, 4.5, or 5 points.

Round Robin Bets

Round robins are basically just multiple small parlays that are going to include however many teams that you choose.  The way that it works though is that you are going to choose your number of games, and then choose how many ways that you want to do the bet.  Typically players choose 3, but you can choose more or less if you want to.  This number includes how many teams you are going to have in each parlay, so if you choose 8 total teams, then you can have quite a few different three team parlays, and the same amount of money will be bet on each round robin.