Glossary of common sports betting terms: Parlay, against the spread, plus teaser explained

Glossary of common sports betting terms: Parlay, against the spread, plus teaser explained


Online sports betting is extremely popular, so now is the perfect time to learn the most popular sports betting terms so you can join in the fun. Pro baseball is the lone major professional sport going on right now, but soon football, basketball and hockey will restart and fill up the sports betting calendar with more fun events to wager on. It’s understandable that learning the most-used sports betting lingo can seem daunting, but it is actually much easier than you think. Below, we have a small guide to help you learn the frequently-used sports betting terminology that will get you ready to place your first wager. Before you know it, you will be a pro at knowing which betting styles go best with which sports.

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Sports book betting guide, glossary, terms

Before you play, make sure you know the common betting terms you’ll see. There are dozens of ways to bet on sports, and this handy sports betting guide can help you figure out what some of the most popular sports betting terminology means.

against the spread: The most common form of sports betting, the spread is designed to level the playing field in a game between two teams that might not be evenly matched. If Chicago is listed as the -7 favorite against Arizona, that means that Chicago has to win by eight points or more for anyone who wagers on it to successfully cash their bet. If Chicago wins by exactly seven, the bet results in a push and you get your money back. If Arizona were to lose by six points or less, any wagers on Chicago would result in a loss and wagers on Arizona would result in a win.

parlay: Parlays include placing multiple bets at the same time, which means you can include multiple sporting events in the same bet. If you bet on four different baseball teams to win today, all four must win their games for the bet to be a winner. It’s a risky way to bet, but it has a big return if the bet wins.

Teaser: This method pays lower odds than a parlay, but remains popular because handicappers still find them profitable. If you don’t love a particular spread or spreads being offered, a teaser allows you to buy a certain amount of points in either direction to increase the likelihood of you hitting your bet. Let’s say you believe two seven-point favorites will win their games outright but you are unsure whether they can cover the touchdown spread. Using a six-point teaser would reduce each team to a -1 favorite, meaning they only have to win by two points. This reduces the payout but deployed correctly, it can be a profitable strategy.

Outright: If you are looking to place a simple wager to start off with, an outright bet is perfect for you. With this betting style, you pick which athlete will win an entire sporting event and then place your wager. This is a popular way to bet on elite golf tournaments and car races, which are both in full season this time of year.

Futures: Football is one of the most popular sports to bet on, even during its offseason. You can bet on football before the season even starts with a futures bet, which can be on anything from whether you think your favorite team will defeat a hated rival to which player you think will win the MVP award. You can even wager on which team you think will win their division.

live betting: One very exciting way to wager on your favorite sports is to bet on them in real-time. Sportsbooks will adjust odds for certain outcomes while the game is going on, so wagering is almost like you are playing along with the pros. A live bet in baseball can be on whether a player hits a home run in the next inning. In football, it can be whether the quarterback throws for a touchdown on the next drive.

over-under: This is an easy way to wager on sports with high score totals, so it’s perfect if you want to bet on basketball. Sportsbooks will predict the final total of the teams’ combined points and you simply pick whether you think the final total will be over or under the sportsbook’s number.

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