How To Gamble: Sports Betting

(-110)

Even so, “wacky” proposition bets can sometimes be found in Las Vegas sports books. If you bet $10 on Burton 15-1 and he goes on to win the race, you win $150 plus your $10 back, for a total payoff of $160.

DriverOddsJeff Gordon4-1Jeff Burton15-1Casey Atwood100-1

Auto racing matchup propositions also are available, in which two drivers are paired against each other in a head-to-head wager, with a betting line on each driver set by the oddsmaker. Boxing odds are shown using a “Money Line.”

Thanks to satellite feeds from racetracks around the nation, Las Vegas is a sort of nirvana for horse racing bettors (or “horseplayers,” as they are sometimes called).

As another example, to generate interest in Monday Night NFL games, many sports books offer odds on which player will score the first touchdown in the game.

Because there are so many tracks to choose from, in Las Vegas race books it is usually necessary to identify which track you want when you place your bet. This increases the probability of winning your bet but decreases the odds of the parlay. The Dodgers’ odds are +110, meaning a $10 bet would win $11, for a return of $21.

On Today’s Line we use a different format, the idea is the same. The Red Wings must win the game by at least two goals to be a winner. All teams must win to win the bet. A two-team parlay would become a straight bet.

Note: The money line is used in conjunction with the point spread. Typically a sports book will list 30 or more individual golfers along with a field (all others) option, at various odds.

Total: Total runs scored in a game. A “plus” (+) preceding the number indicates an underdog.

Some matchups pit one (usually very good) golfer against two or more others. This increases the probability of winning your bet but decreases the odds of the parlay. The bet is treated as if the postponed game were never included in the parlay.

Note: When betting a total, these rules apply:

(a) The game must go nine innings, or 8 1/2 innings if the home team wins.

(b) Both listed pitchers must start the game.

If either doesn’t happen, the bet is refunded.

Point spreads change constantly. If for some reason he does not tee off, this is usually considered “no action” and tickets are refunded.

Here are two more examples of a dime line and a 20-cent line. 4.”

It is common for a team to be listed as a 1/2-goal favorite and be listed with a +120 price. If Tyson wins, a $26 bet would win $10 and return $36. (Both drivers must start for action.)

Another popular form of golf betting involves matchup propositions, in which two golfers are paired against each other in a head-to-head wager, with a betting line on each golfer set by the oddsmaker. If you bet $10 on Lehman at 25-1 and he goes on to win the tournament, you win $250 plus your $10 back, for a total payoff of $260.

Hitting an “exacta” entails picking the first two finishers in a race in the correct order; a “quinella” is the first two finishers in either order. In horse racing futures, if your horse does not start the race due to injury or any other reason, you lose the bet — there are no refunds. The payout, unless stated otherwise, is figured at odds of 10/11. All teams must win to win the bet.

All runs scored in extra innings count in over/under bets.

To bet on basketball, tell the ticket writer the bet number of the team you wish to bet, with the point spread, and the amount you wish to wager. Rules and details vary greatly by casino so be sure to shop around to find those that appeal to you.

To bet on football, tell the ticket writer the bet number of the team you wish to bet, with the point spread and the amount you wish to wager. The payout, unless stated otherwise, is figured at odds of 10/11. If you place $10 on the Redskins and they go on to win the Super Bowl, you collect $120 plus your $10 back for a total payoff of $130. If the Red Wings win by 2 goals; a $15 bet would win $10 and return $25. Read them carefully before wagering. The cards are simple to fill out. (-110)

Total: Total points scored in a game. Several books still offer dime lines.

Among Las Vegas gamblers, golf is considered one of the two fastest-growing sports to bet on (auto racing is the other).

Parlay Cards: These offer the potential for huge return while betting as little as $2.

The Money Line: Odds for a game based on $1.00. Odds and the number of points available to “tease” vary from casino to casino. This means that a wager of $11 would win $10 and return $21.

Nevada sports books are not permitted to accept wagers on presidential elections, the Academy Awards or the winner of the TV show “Survivor.” Some sports books may post odds on these events as a publicity stunt, but these odds are for amusement only. The golfer with the better (lower) score wins the matchup. This means that a wager of $11 would win $10 and return $21.

Especially in major tournaments, some sports books offer odds on unusual golf propositions, such as the over/under on the winning score, the over/under on the lowest round by any golfer or the over/under on the finishing position by a particular golfer. They are often linked to the Super Bowl or another major sporting event.

When making a baseball bet, you are betting team vs. They are not real betting lines.

Note: Same rules apply to run line bets as totals.

(a) The game must go nine innings, or 8 1/2 innings if the home team wins.

(b) Both listed pitchers must start the game.

If either doesn’t happen, the bet is refunded.

Example:

Pitcher listed is starting pitcherBet Num.TeamPitcherOddsTotalMoney line

for total301DodgersBrown+1107.5Over -110302BravesMaddux-120 Under -110

Note: The bottom team is always listed as the home team unless otherwise noted.

You may combine several teams into one wager. For the purposes of future book betting, the team has to win only the Super Bowl.

You may combine several teams into one wager. If you bet $145 on the favored Jarrett, the payoff would be $100 plus your $145 back, for a total of $245. If you bet the Lakers, any of the following will declare you a winner.

(a) The Lakers win the game.

(b) The Lakers lose the game by not more than 3 points.

 

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Basketball

In head-to-head matchup propositions, both golfers must tee off for action.

For example, a matchup may pit Dale Jarrett (minus 145) against Bobby Labonte (plus 125). team. A two-team parlay would become a straight bet.

Betting lines can be found on NASCAR races as well as on the various open-wheel circuits.

The Braves’ odds are -120, meaning a $12 bet would win $10, for a return of $22. All teams and/or totals must cover the point spread to win the bet. All teams and/or totals must cover the point spread to win the bet. On the other hand, the odds on your horse racing futures bet also are “locked in,” regardless of the horse’s odds on race day.

The Money Line: Odds for a game based on $1.00 A “minus” (-) preceding the number indicates the team is a favorite. The payout varies according to the odds posted. Dime lines are slowly disappearing as sports books look to make a larger profit during what is traditionally the slowest betting season. The Jets’ odds are +160, meaning a $10 bet would win $16 for a return of $26.

Otherwise, betting procedure in the race book is the same as at the track: For you to collect on a “win” bet your horse must win the race, to collect on a “place” bet he must finish first or second, and to collect on a “show” bet he must finish first, second or third.

In some cases, bettors have the option to discard the point spread and bet on which team will win. If the Yankees go on to win 94 or more games, the “over” is a winner. A “plus” (+) preceding the number indicates the team is an underdog.

 

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Propositions

 

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Hockey

To bet on hockey, tell the ticket writer the bet number of the team you wish to bet and the amount you wish to wager. For example, the over/under on Woods’ finishing position may be 3 1/2. And a “Pick Six” calls for picking the winners of six consecutive races, an extremely difficult feat that is usually rewarded with an enormous payout.

Don’t let the numbers at the sports books confuse you. A “daily triple” entails picking the winners of three consecutive races. The following are approximate odds:

Number of teams4 points4.5 points5 points2 teams10-1210-1310-143 teams8.5-57.5-57-54 teams3-15-22-15 teams9-24-17-26 teams7-16-15-17 teams10-19-18-1

 

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Boxing

Example:

Bet No.TeamLineMoney LineTotal401Sharks+1.5+130 402Red Wings-1.5-1505

Note: The bottom team is always listed as the home team unless otherwise noted.

The Goal Spread:

Baseball Run Lines

Basketball Teasers: A wager that improves the point spread, but at reduced odds.

In Las Vegas, race books frequently offer promotions such as free contests with cash prizes, special house-banked betting pools that grow larger if no one hits them for a few days or horse racing tournaments. A “minus” (-) preceding the number indicates the team is a favorite. If you bet $125 on the favored Lehman, the payoff would be $100 plus your $125 back, for a total of $225. Simply darken the boxes, or circles, that apply to the teams you wish to parlay. A “plus” (+) preceding the number indicates the team is an underdog.

You may wager that the total score of the game will be more or less than the number listed. A “plus” (+) preceding the number indicates the team is an underdog.

Bet No.TeamLineTotalMoney Line101Jets 40+160102Dolphins-6 -180

The Dolphins’ odds are -180, meaning an $18 bet would win $10 for a return of $28. It makes no difference which team covers the spread. If he finishes first, second or third in the tournament, the “under” wins; if he finishes fourth or worse, the “over” tickets cash.

 

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Horse racing

Baseball Parlays. Simply add the final scores of each team. Odds and the number of teams vary from casino to casino. The following are approximate odds:

2 teams13-53 teams6-14 teams11-15 teams22-16 teams44-17 teams90-1

Any game that results in a push reduces the parlay one team. The point spread that is listed on your ticket is your official spread.

“Teasing” the point spread is done by adding points to a underdog or by subtracting points from a favorite. This means that by giving up 1/2 goal, a $10 bet would win $12 for a return of $22.

The most basic form of golf betting involves picking the winner of a tournament. This is called betting on the “Money Line”

You may wager that the total score of the game will be more or less than the number listed.

This guide is provided for informational purposes only. Simply ask the betting attendant at your favorite sports book what your payout would be before placing the bet.

Total: Total points scored in a game. Simply add the final score of each team. Simply add the final score of each team. Hockey parlays are figured out by calculating the payout for the first game, based on the money line, then applying that amount to the next game and so forth.

Here’s an example of how to figure out a baseball parlay:

Amount

wageredOdds for

Team 1Odds for

Team 2Odds for

Team 3 $10+120-130-150 $10x 2.20x 1.77x 1.67= $65.03

Now at VEGAS.com we don’t pretend to be mathematicians and we don’t have a breakdown of multipliers for every bet, but the good news is you don’t have to be either. Simply add the final scores of each team. It does not matter whether your team covers the point spread in the Super Bowl. A “superfecta” is the first four finishers in exacta order.

To bet on boxing, tell the ticket writer the bet number of the boxer you wish to bet and the amount you wish to wager. The Underdog’s odds are based on what the casino has for its line. If you bet the Jets, any of the following will declare you a winner.

(a) The Jets win the game.

(b) The game ends in a tie.

(c) The Jets lose the game by not more than 6 points.

 

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Auto racing

Boxing matches often feature money line proposition wagers on knockouts, draws, rounds and the duration of the fight. Also called the over/under.

This is called a straight bet.

The Money Line: Odds for a game based on $1.00. This means you cannot even bet on who will win awards such as the Most Valuable Player, Rookie of the Year, Cy Young and the like.

The point spread: When betting on football, the team you bet on must “cover the spread.” This means the team must win or not lose by a predetermined margin of points.

The Point Spread: When betting on basketball, the team you bet on must “cover the spread.” This means the team must win or not lose by a predetermined margin of points.

Rules vary by casino, but usually your golfer must tee off in the tournament for “action” (meaning once he tees off, you will either win or lose your bet). Most use a “Dime Line” or something close to that.

You have just seen an example of a dime line.

Braves -120

Dodgers +110

Teasers can not be straight bets.

You can arrive at the underdog’s price by looking at the favorite’s line. It makes no difference which team covers the spread. If you bet $100 on the underdog Furyk, the payoff would be $105 plus your $100 back, for a total of $205.

Hockey Parlays

This is called a straight bet. You have the option to specify that either or both listed pitchers must start the game.

When betting on hockey, the team you bet on must “cover the spread.” This means the team must win or not lose by a predetermined margin of goals.

Some sports books offer futures betting on unusual propositions, such as which major league baseball player will hit the most home runs in the regular season. Odds vary on each fight.

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Football

“Teasing” the point spread is done by adding points to a underdog or by subtracting points from a favorite. Then darken the amount you want to bet.

Football Teasers: A wager that improves the point spread, but at reduced odds.

A “daily double” is a wager that calls for picking the winners of two consecutive races. Example:

Bet No.BoxerOdds2001Mike Tyson-2602002Evander Holyfield+220

Tyson is favored to win the bout. If the Sharks win, tie or lose by one goal; a $10 bet would win $13 and return $23.

Since baseball odds are determined on starting pitchers, any late pitching changes often force an adjustment in the odds. In this example, if you bet the Bulls, the Bulls must win by 4 points for you to win your bet. The driver with the better finish in the race wins the matchup. The listed point spread the time you make your bet may be different from the point spread when the game starts. A straight bet is the most common type of football bet.

The Money Line: Odds for a game based on $1. Also called the over/under.

You may combine several teams into one wager. The following are approximate odds:

Number of teams6 points6.5 points7 points2 teams10-1210-1310-143 teams8.5-57.5-57-54 teams3-15-22-15 teams9-24-17-26 teams7-16-15-17 teams10-19-18-1

 

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Futures

Listed pitcher(s) option

Basketball Parlays: More than one team on the same bet.

Under state law, wagers must involve the outcome of “athletic contests” rather than elections or votes of any kind. This is not a betting site.

The structure of betting on auto racing is similar to that of golf. Baseball odds are shown using a “Money Line.”

The Red Wings are 1 1/2-goal favorites to win. The most basic wager involves picking the winner of a race. If you bet on the Sharks, you win your bet if:

(a) The Sharks win the game.

(b) The game ends in a tie.

(c) The Sharks lose the game by not more than 1 goal.

Betting on auto racing has exploded in popularity in Vegas in recent years, and its appeal continues to grow.

Another form of futures betting involves the over/under on the number of games a particular team will win in the regular season. For example, tell the ticket writer, “Churchill Downs, eighth race, five dollars to win on No. To determine the winner, take Woods’ score and compare with to the best (lowest) score recorded by the three others.

As an illustration, let’s look at Super Bowl futures. If Holyfield wins, a $10 bet would win $22 and return $32.

For example, Jeff Gordon may be listed at 4-1, Jeff Burton at 15-1, Casey Atwood at 100-1, etc. If they win 92 or fewer games, the “under” is a winner. (If one golfer continues play in the tournament after his opponent misses the cut, the golfer who continues play wins the matchup.)

 

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Golf

If the Bulls win by exactly 3 points then the wager is declared a push and all money is refunded.

Sports books offer bettors the opportunity to wager on the outcome of a season — for example, which team will win the Super Bowl or the Stanley Cup or the American League East pennant. Rules for parlay cards are placed on the back of each card. Note that in this type of wager, all bets are action regardless of injuries or other unforeseen events.

Baseball parlays are figured out by calculating the payout for the first game, based on the money line, then applying that amount to the next game, and so-forth.

Example:

Bet Num.TeamPitcherMoney LineTotalMoney Line

for totalsRun LineMoney Line

for run line301DodgersBrown+1107.5Ov -110+1.5-180302BravesMaddux-120 Un -110-1.5+160

The Braves must win by 2 runs; a $10 bet would win $16, and return $26. Also called the over/under.

If your team wins the game, you win. It makes no difference which team covers the spread. See whether you can tell them apart.

For example, a matchup may pit Lehman (minus 125) against Jim Furyk (plus 105). If you bet the Dolphins, the Dolphins must win by 7 points for you to win your bet. The payout, unless stated otherwise, is figured at odds of 10/11. A “minus” (-) preceding the number indicates a favorite. It makes no difference which team wins. You will not find the odds for the Underdog. This is explained later.

A draw on a straight bet will refund your bet.

A 20-cent line would be this.

Braves -130

Dodgers +110

A favorite must win by 2 runs or more, or the underdog must either:

(a) Win the game.

(b) Must lose by only one run.

The payout varies according to the money line odds assigned to each outcome.

 

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Baseball

Example:

Bet No.TeamLineTotal201Bulls-3 202Lakers 198

Note: The bottom team is always listed as the home team unless otherwise noted.

If a game is postponed for any reason, the parlay reduces by one team. The payout, unless stated otherwise, is figured at odds of 10/11.

The run line: a point spread of 1 1/2 given to a baseball game.

The point spread is always placed to the immediate right of the team that is favored. This will increase or decrease the payout on a winning ticket. Also called the over/under.

Point spreads change constantly. However, if you list starting pitchers, and your pitcher doesn’t start, then the bet is refunded.

For instance, in Super Bowl XXXV gamblers could bet on whether the Ravens would score more touchdowns than the Chicago Blackhawks scored goals on Super Bowl Sunday — and that was just one of countless “wacky” propositions.

Football Parlays: More than one team on the same bet.

You may wager that the total score of the game will be more or less than the number listed. Typically a sports book will list 20 or more individual drivers along with a field (all others) option, at various odds.

Betting a horse “across the board” is really three separate bets: one to win, one to place and one to show.

You may combine several teams into one wager. The payout, unless stated otherwise, is figured at odds of 10/11. For example, Woods may be pitted against Phil Mickelson, Davis Love III and Ernie Els. The following are approximate odds:

2 teams13-53 teams6-14 teams11-15 teams22-16 teams44-17 teams90-1

Any game that results in a push reduces the parlay one team. A “minus” (-) preceding the number indicates the team is a favorite. Sports books list each NFL team with corresponding odds to win the Super Bowl. The listed money line the time you make your bet may be different from the money line when the game starts. Learn all the basics to sports betting on this page along with a few advanced methods. For example, the Ravens may be 5-1, the Redskins 12-1, the Cardinals 100-1, etc. The payout, unless stated otherwise, is figured at odds of 10/11 (-110).

Money lines change constantly. If they win exactly 93, the bet is a push and tickets are refunded.

For example, Tiger Woods may be listed at 2-1, Tom Lehman at 25-1, Bob May at 100-1, etc. This is known as “futures book” or “future book” betting.

Braves -105

Dodgers -105

To bet on baseball, tell the ticket writer the bet number of the team you wish to bet and the amount you wish to wager.

Example:

Bet No.TeamLine101Jets 102Dolphins-6

Note: The bottom team is always listed as the home team unless otherwise noted.

You may wager that the total score of the game will be more or less than the number listed. If your team covers the goal spread, you win. This type of wager is typically found on pro football and major league baseball, and sometimes on pro basketball. The point spread that is listed on your ticket is your official spread.

Bet No.TeamLineTotalMoney Line101Jets 40+160102Dolphins-6 -180

Total: Total points scored in a game. Odds and the number of teams vary from casino to casino. A “trifecta” is the first three finishers in exact order; a “trifecta box” is the first three in any order. Odds and the number of points available to “tease” vary from casino to casino. If you bet $100 on the underdog Labonte, the payoff would be $125 plus your $100 back, for a total of $225.

DriverMoney LineDale Jarrett-145Bobby Labonte+125

Some sports books also post unusual auto racing propositions such as the over/under on the number of cautions in a race, or which car manufacturer (GM, Ford or Dodge) will win the race.

The point spread is always placed to the immediate right of the team that is favored. The listed line on your ticket is your official odds, unless starting pitcher is changed. The listed point spread at the time you make your bet may be different from the point spread when the game starts. The Dodgers must not lose by 2 runs; an $18 bet would win $10, and return $28.

Sports books offer a number of different cards, each one having different rules. For example, the over/under on the Yankees may be 93 wins. The payout is based on a “Money Line”.

When you make a futures bet, your odds are “locked in.” That means if you bet the Redskins at 12-1, you will get paid off at 12-1 odds, even if the sports book later adjusts the odds (to 6-1, for instance).

If the Dolphins win by exactly 6 points, the wager is declared a push and all money is refunded.

Braves -120

Dodgers Even

These “wacky” bets can be lots of fun, but odds and details vary tremendously by casino, so read the fine print before getting involved.

More Questions?

FAQ can help you find the answers.

Futures betting also is offered on the major events in horse racing, such as the Kentucky Derby and Breeders’ Cup

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