Sports Book Betting

Online Sports Betting - Betting Odds

Sporting fanatics have for years now tried to predict the outcome of sporting events. It is a tough racket but if played properly, meaning in fun and not because of an addiction, it can be a lot of fun. The largest and possibly most renowned sports odds makers work in Las Vegas. People from around the world are recruited to predict who is not only going to win a tournament or event but to accurately predict how many points will be earned by the teams and other various statistics.

    "Sports betting (sometimes punting) - is the name given to the general activity of predicting sports results, while betting on the believed outcome. Billions of dollars worldwide are involved in this form of gambling. Perhaps more so than other gambling games, the legality and general acceptance of sports betting varies from nation to nation.

Sports Betting Terms:
  • Action: A live bet or bets. ("They got a lot of action on that game." "I have action on this game.")

  • Arbitrage: Betting the same event at separate sports books in order to lock in a profit by taking advantage of different betting lines.

  • Bad beat: A very tough, often emotional, betting loss that is characterized by rotten luck.

  • Bankroll: Total capital available for betting sports.

  • Beard: A person who is betting someone else's money for that other person; a messenger.

  • Board: A presentation of all the games and events available for betting in a sports book. (If wagers are being taken on a game, the game is "on the board," otherwise it is "off the board.")

  • Bookmaker (or Bookie): A person who accepts bets.

  • Buck: See "dollar."

  • Buyback: The money that comes in on the underdog after a favorite is bet heavily enough to move the line.

  • Chalk: A favorite, usually a heavy favorite.

  • Chalk eaters: Bettors who like to bet big favorites (often a derogatory term).

  • Circled game: A game in which the sports book has reduced its betting limits, usually because of weather or the uncertain status of injured players.

  • Cover: Winning against the point spread. (A 10-point underdog that loses 20-14 has covered, or "covered the spread.")

  • Dime: $1,000. (A "five-dime" bet is a $5,000 bet.)

  • Dime line: A betting line with a 10-cent straddle, often used in baseball. (With a dime line, if the favorite is minus 120, the underdog is plus 110.)

  • Dog: See "underdog."

  • Dollar: $100. (If a sports book has a $500 maximum on a particular type of bet, you could say it's a "five-dollar limit.")

  • Exposure: The degree of risk that a sports book will lose money on a given game, result or proposition. (If a book is "highly exposed" on the Cubs in World Series futures betting, it will lose a lot of money to bettors if the Cubs win the World Series.)

  • Fade: To take the opposite side of another bettor's wager or to accept that bet yourself.

  • Favorite: A team (or player) that, according to the odds, is the stronger or strongest in a given match-up or is regarded as such by the betting public or is expected to win.

  • First-half betting: Wagers that involve the outcome of the first half of a game only.

  • Freeroll: A bet you can win or push but not lose.

  • Futures: A type of wager involving the outcome of a season or how a particular team or player will perform over the course of a season.

  • Halftime betting: Wagers, based on betting lines posted at halftime, which involve the outcome of the second half of a game only.

  • Handicap: To study and research sports in order to make predictions on the results of upcoming games and events.

  • Handle: The amount of money in wagers accepted. ("The handle was down this year on the Super Bowl.")

  • Hedge: To make a bet that takes the opposite side of your original position, usually to reduce risk or lock in some profit.

  • Hook: A half-point in the betting spread. ("I lost by the hook.")

  • Hotel guest: See "tourist."

  • House: The casino, sports book or bookmaker.

  • Juice: See "vigorish."

  • Layoff: A type of wager made by one bookmaker with another, often larger, bookmaker in order to balance action or reduce risk.

  • Limit: The maximum wager accepted by a sports book.

  • Line: The point spread or odds on a game or event.

  • Lock: A bet that cannot lose; a term that is often misused and abused by disreputable touts.

  • Long shot: Big underdog.

  • Match-up proposition: A betting option that pits two players against one another in a contest or event, often used in golf and auto racing wagering.

  • Middle: A situation in which you bet both sides in a game and win both bets, due to favorable line moves. (Example: Bet a football favorite at minus 2 , then bet the underdog at plus 3 at another book or later in the week. If the favorite wins by exactly 3 points, both bets win.)

  • Money line: The odds on a team winning a game outright, regardless of the point spread.

  • Money management: Any strategy used by a bettor for making the most of his bankroll.

  • Nickel: $500.

  • Offshore: Designation for the organized sports betting industry outside of the United States.

  • Out: A place to get bets down, whether it's a Nevada sports book, offshore book or illegal bookmaker. ("It's good to have a lot of outs.")

  • Over/under: See "totals."

  • Overlay: A situation in which the odds are favorable to the sharp bettor.

  • Parlay: A bet in which two or more events must happen in order to win; if any one of them does not happen, the wager loses.

  • Pay by mail: How sports books usually pay off winning tickets to tourists who make a bet while visiting Nevada, then return to their home state before they have a chance to cash them.

  • Pick 'em: An even match-up, a game with no clear favorite.

  • Player: A sports bettor.

  • Pleaser: A specialized form of a parlay that improves the point spread (for the book) but pays off at improved odds.

  • Point spread: The number of points added to or subtracted from a team's actual score for betting purposes.

  • Power rating: A numerical representation of a team's strength for betting purposes.

  • Price: See "line."

  • Proposition (or prop): An unusual or offbeat betting opportunity.

  • Public: Average, unsophisticated or casual bettors as a whole; or, used to describe money bet by the public ("a lot of public money came in on the Cowboys"); see "square."

  • Puck line: In hockey, a betting structure that dictates the favorite must win by a set number of goals, and/or adds a set number of goals to the underdog's actual score.

  • Pup: See "underdog."

  • Push: A bet in which the money wagered is refunded; a tie.

  • Rotation: The official list of all the games on the betting board, presented in a specific order.

  • Round robin: A specialized form of a parlay that uses every combination of a set of teams in a wager. For example, there would be six two-team parlays within a four-team round robin.

  • Rundown: A reading of all the games and betting lines on a particular day.

  • Runner: See "beard."

  • Scalp: A form of a middle in which you bet both sides in a game, taking advantage of line movements to secure a profit.

  • Sharp: Savvy, highly informed; or, used to describe the money bet by sharp players ("a lot of sharp money came in on the Eagles").

  • Side: A variation of a middle in which you win one bet and push the other; also, a particular team in a match-up. ("Which side do you like?")

  • Sports book: The part of the casino that accepts bets on athletic contests.

  • Square: An unsophisticated or casual bettor, the opposite of a wise guy; see "public."

  • Steam: One-sided action.

  • Straight: A single bet, usually laying 110 to win 100.

  • Takeback: On a money line, the price of the underdog. (In baseball, if the favorite is minus 120, the "takeback" on the underdog is often plus 110.)

  • Teaser: A specialized form of a parlay that improves the point spread (for the bettor) but pays off at reduced odds.

  • Totals: A type of wager that involves whether a score or result will go over or under a posted number.

  • Tourist: A typical visitor to Las Vegas, almost always used as another way to say "square."

  • Tout: A person who sells his predictions to bettors (often derogatory).

  • 20-cent line: A betting line with a 20-cent straddle, standard in football and basketball. (With a 20-cent line, if the favorite is minus 120, the underdog is even money.)

  • Underdog: A team (or player) that, according to the odds, is the weaker or among the weakest in a given match-up, or is regarded as such by the betting public, or is expected to lose.

  • Vigorish (or vig): The commission charged by the bookmaker.

  • Wise guy: A sharp, successful, established professional sports bettor. (In terms of Las Vegas sports betting, this has nothing to do with Tony Soprano, Henry Hill & Co.)

  • Wood: The price of a heavy favorite. (If you bet the Red Sox as a minus 240 favorite, you "lay the wood" with the Red Sox.)

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