# What Do the Numbers in Sports Betting Mean?

If you’re new to sports betting, you may be wondering what all the numbers mean. This quick guide will help you understand the basics of sports betting odds so you can start placing bets with confidence.

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## Introduction

Have you ever seen a set of numbers next to a team name and wondered what they meant? These numbers are called the point spread, and they represent how much one team is expected to win or lose by. The point spread is used in many different sports, but it is most commonly seen in football and basketball.

In order to understand the point spread, you need to know how sports betting works. When you place a bet on a game, you are essentially predicting who will win. The sportsbook will then set odds for each team based on their likelihood of winning. These odds will be represented as a set of numbers, with the positive number being the amount of money you would win if you bet on the favorite, and the negative number being the amount of money you would have to bet in order to win \$100.

For example, let’s say that the New England Patriots are playing the Los Angeles Rams in a football game. The Patriots are considered to be the favorites, so they might be listed as -7. This means that if you bet on the Patriots, you would need to bet \$700 in order to win \$100. On the other hand, if you bet on the Rams, you would only need to bet \$100 in order to win \$700.

The point spread is designed to make sure that there is an equal amount of money being bet on both teams. This way, neither team has an advantage when it comes to the amount of money being wagered. It also ensures that there is action on both sides of the bet and that people are not just betting on their favorite team because they think they will always win.

## Moneyline

The moneyline is the most common type of bet in sports betting. It simply involves placing a bet on the team or player you think will win. The odds will be expressed as either a positive or negative number. A positive number indicates how much money you could win if you bet \$100. For example, +250 means you would win \$250 if you bet \$100. A negative number indicates how much money you need to bet to win \$100. For example, -250 means you would need to bet \$250 to win \$100.

The Spread: When betting on the favorite, you take the points. When betting on the underdog, you are giving the points. The line is handicapped so many bettors get the opportunity to win their wager even if their team loses. The favorite is always indicated by a minus sign (e.g. -5.5) and the underdog by a plus sign (e.g.+5.5). If you bet on the favorite, you win your bet if they win by more than the number of points in the spread. In other words, they can lose by up to 5 points and you still win your bet (assuming they don’t lose by more than that). If you bet on the underdog, you win if they either win outright or lose by less than the number of points in the spread.

## Over/Under

In sports betting, the over/under is a bet on the combined score of both teams in a game. For example, in a football game between the Rams and 49ers, if the over/under is set at 48 points, bettors can wager on whether they think the final score will be more or less than 48 points.

The over/under is also sometimes referred to as the “total” or “points total.” In order to win an over/under bet, you must correctly predict whether the final score will be higher or lower than the number set by the sportsbook. If you bet on the over and the final score is exactly 48 points (or any other number that equals the total), then your bet is a push and you will get your money back.

The over/under is usually set at a whole number, but it can also be set at a half-point (ex: 49.5). In this case, if the final score ends up being exactly 49 points, then all bets on both sides of the over/under will be graded as winners.

## Parlay

In sports betting, a parlay is a bet that links together two or more individual wagers and is dependent on all of those wagers winning together. The benefit of a parlay is that it pays out much higher than place betting each wager separately. However, the downside is that if even one of the linked wagers loses, the entire parlay loses as well.

## Teaser

Most sports betting sites will post odds in one of three ways: Fractional, Decimal, or American. So what do those numbers really mean and how do they impact your bets? Let’s take a look at each format to find out.

Fractional Odds
Fractional odds are most popular in the UK and are displayed as two numbers separated by a slash. The number on the left is how much you need to bet to win the amount shown on the right. So, if you see odds of 5/2, that means you’ll need to bet \$5 to win \$2 — or \$2 to win \$5, depending how you want to view it.

To calculate your potential winnings with fractional odds, simply multiply your stake by the number on the right, then divide that number by the number on the left. So using those same odds of 5/2, if you bet \$10, you would multiply 10 x 2 (for the \$2 payout), then divide that number by 5 (for the 5/2 fraction). That gives us a potential payout of \$20 — or 2-1 odds.

Decimal Odds
Decimal odds are most popular outside of North America and are displayed as two numbers separated by a decimal point. The number on the left is how much you need to bet to win the amount shown on the right. So if you see decimal odds of 2.50, that means you’ll need to bet \$1 to win \$2.50 — or 50 cents to win \$1, depending how you want to view it.

To calculate your potential winnings with decimal odds, simply multiply your stake by the decimal number shown. So using those same decimal odds of 2.50, if we bet \$10 we would simply multiply 10 x 2.5 for a total potential payout of \$25 — or 2-1/2 odds.

American Odds (aka Moneyline Odds)
Americanodds are most popular in North America and are displayed as either a positive or negative number followed by a colon and then another number. A positive number shows how much money you needto betto win\$100—or how much moneyyou could potentiallywin ifyou bet\$100(dependinghowyou wanttoviewit).Anegativenumber showshowmuchmoneyyou needtobettowin\$100—oryou couldpotentially loseifyoubetyour entire\$100bankrollonthatbet(againdependingonyourperspective).Soifyou seethe Americanoddsforaneventas+350,-600thatmeans it’slikelygoingto bea closeoutcomebecause thereisnota lotofvalueeitherway—butifyouwereto placea\$100wageron teamAatthe+350oddsyoucouldpotentiallywin\$350—whereasa\$100wageron teamBat -600oddswouldonlypay out\$16.67ifteamBwonthe event.(For reference:Evenmoneyisrepresentedby -100 Americanoddsand +100 Americanodds.)

To calculate potential payouts with American odds, things get a little more complicated because there is no single formula that will work in all cases. If the American oddswere+350foraneventandyou placeda\$100wagerandteam Awonthe eventyourpotentialpayout wouldbe\$450(\$350+youroriginal\$100bet).Butifyou placedthe same\$100beton teamBat-600andteam Bwonthe eventthenyoudidn’tdoubleyourmoneybecauseyou onlyRecoveredyour originalbetwithayourpotentialpayoutof just\$16.67(\$100-\$83.\$33).In thiscaseyoulostalmostallofyourprofitbecauseofthevigorish Chargedbythebookmaker—orthe”juice”asthey callitin somecircles.(Thevigorishisthesmallpercentage Chargedbythe bookmakerto makea profiton anevent.)

## Futures

If you’re new to sports betting, you’ve probably seen a lot of numbers thrown around and wondered what they all mean. From spreads to moneylines to totals, it can be a lot to take in at first. But don’t worry, we’re here to help. In this article, we’re going to break down the most common types of bets and explain what the numbers mean.

Futures: A future bet is a wager on an event that will take place at some point in the future. The most common type of future bet is a bet on who will win a particular championship, but you can also bet on things like who will be the MVP or which team will have the most wins in a season. Futures usually have odds that are posted months in advance, so there is a lot of time for the odds to change.

Spread: A spread bet is a wager on the margin of victory in a game. The favorite will have a negative number (i.e. -7), which means they need to win by more than 7 points to cover the spread. The underdog will have a positive number (i.e +7), which means they need to lose by less than 7 points or win the game outright to cover the spread. The odds for spread bets are usually -110, which means you need to bet \$110 to win \$100.

Moneyline: A moneyline bet is a wager on who will win a particular game outright. The favorite will have negative odds (i.e. -300), which means you need to bet \$300 to win \$100. The underdog will have positive odds (i.e +200), which means you need to bet \$100 to win \$200. Moneyline bets don’t have spreads, so the only thing that matters is who wins and loses the game outright.

Total: A totalbet is a wager on whether the combined score of two teams will be over or under a certain number . The oddsmakers set a number and then you can bet over or under that number . For example , let ’s say the total for Yankees – Red Sox game is set at 10 . If you bet over and the final score is Yankees 9 , Red Sox 3 , then you would lose your bet because the combined score would be 12 , which is under 10 . However , if you had bet under and the final score was Yankees 13 , Red Sox 3 , then you would win because the combined score would be 16 , which is over 10 .

## Conclusion

To summarize, the numbers in sports betting represent the moneyline odds. The bigger the number, the lower the chance of that team winning. The smaller the number, the higher the chance of that team winning.