Understanding Odds and Payouts in Sports Betting

sports betting

When betting on sports, it’s important to understand odds and payouts. This will help you create value with your wagers, and can be the difference between winning and losing. While every sports betting strategy will work differently, it’s important to learn and test each one until you find what works best for you.

Odds are the numbers a sportsbook assigns to each team when they’re paired against each other. They are calculated by a predictive model that gives each team an implied probability of winning. The number may look wildly different between sportsbooks, because each house has a slightly different way of setting their lines. It can also be influenced by things like game structure: baseball games are nine innings, football four quarters, and hockey three periods.

A plus sign (+) before a team’s odds means they’re the underdog, and a minus sign (-) means they’re the favorite. It can be hard to break this habit because our brains are conditioned to think of plus and minus as positive and negative.

Sportsbooks offer odds on just about everything these days. That includes futures, which are bets on events that will happen in the future such as who will win a championship well in advance. You can place these bets before the season starts for the highest payout, but they’ll often clear out by the end of the regular season and are closed after the Super Bowl. Also, if you bet on a futures market and lose, the sportsbook won’t get your money back because they have the hook.

Posted in: Gambling