TYPES OF SPORT BETS

To a beginner, the different types of sports bets may be a bit confusing at first, but understanding them is essential to increase your edge.

Simply betting on the favorite won’t always cut it. Sometimes it’s worth risking a little more or less depending on a situation. And you can achieve this by placing different bets and adjusting risk/reward ratio yourself.

Let’s take a look at what bets can you make on sports.

Straight Bets

Straight bets, sometimes called side bets, are the simplest, most straightforward bets you can make. Before the event you pick one of the teams or players to win.

For example, the upcoming match you want to bet on is Manchester City – Liverpool. The odds are 2.25 for City, 3.5 for Liverpool, and 2.0 for the draw.

If you place $20 on Manchester City to win, you get $45 (2.25 x $20).

Moneyline bets and Point Spread bets

Straight bets, sometimes called side bets, are the simplest, most straightforward bets you can make. Before the event you pick one of the teams or players to win.

For example, the upcoming match you want to bet on is Manchester City – Liverpool. The odds are 2.25 for City, 3.5 for Liverpool, and 2.0 for the draw.

If you place $20 on Manchester City to win, you get $45 (2.25 x $20).

Point Spread Straight Bet

Betting on the point spread is also a straight bet, but spread bets take into account the difference of points between two teams. This is one of the most popular bets in American football.

You will see two values – negative (for the favorite) and a positive (for the underdog). Let’s say New England Patriots -3.5 vs. New York Giants +3.5.

That means that the favorite must win the game by 4 points or more. So, even if the underdog team loses but only by 3 points, it’s enough to cover the spread. If the point spread is a round number like 3, and the favorite wins by 3 points, then the bet is a push.

Totals

Betting on the total means that you bet on a total amount of points both teams will score during the game. Usually there is already a number predicted and all you have to do is decide whether the score will be higher or lower.

This is a common bet in basketball. Let’s say the Miami Heat will meet the San Antonio Spurs, and the total is 198 points. If you bet over, then you want the two teams to score more than 198 points. If you bet the under, then you want the opposite. Most of these bets force you to lay -110 – bet $11 to win $10 – but the odds can move if there is too much action on either side.

Parlays

A parlay is a combination of two or more bets. The odds of each bet are multiplied so parlays offer much bigger payouts, but the more bets are combined, the harder it is to win.

Think of it as several straight bets at a time. Let’s say there are two matches you want to bet on in tennis and soccer

Manchester United (1.70) vs. Westham United (3.5)
Rafael Nadal (1.15) vs. Fernando Verdaso (4.5)
If you bet $10 on each favorite as straight bets and win, you collect a total of $28 ($11 + $17). If you make the same $20 as parlay bet, the odds are multiplied, maximizing your potential profits, but you must win both bets.

There are two more bets similar to parlay, teasers and pleasers. Even though teasers and pleasers are a somewhat advanced bet types used mainly in NFL, more and more players try out these bets.

Teaser

Teaser bet combines two or more bets into one, just like parlay, and in the same account, winning requires all bets being correct.

The difference is that the bettor has the advantage of adjusting the point spread. There are 3 common types of teasers – 6, 6.5 and 7-point teasers.

Let’s say you placed a teaser bet on two NFL teams – Patriots +3 and on Cowboys -8. A 6.5 point teaser bet would change it to +9.5 and -1.5 respectively. In simple terms, now your underdog can lose by a bigger margin and your second bet on the favorite can win by fewer points for you to win this bet.

Consequently, the bet is safer but the payout is smaller – usually these have the same payouts as straight bets on point spreads.

Pleaser

Similarly to parlays and teasers, pleaser bets combine two or more bets into one and require each wager to be correct in order to make it a winning bet.

However, whereas with teasers you move point spread to make the bet safer, the pleaser bet moves the spread out of your favor significantly boosting the potential payout. Is it worth it? Well, sometimes it is.

If-bet

This is also a combination bet with two or more bets. This type of a bet requires the first option to succeed in order for the second one to count, and so on. If your first bet loses, the other bets never go into action.