Sports Betting Terms

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Added game
A sports event that is not part of the regular offer of a sportsbook but has been added at the request of bettors.
Accumulator
A type of wager where a bettor makes multiple selections. In order for a payout to occur, all selections should be predicted correctly.
American odds
The type of odds which are expressed in 100. The 100 is usually accompanied by a plus (+) or a (-) which denotes the betting underdog and favorite respectively.
Ante-post
Betting early on an event before it starts.
Against the spread
Betting in a way that opposes logic based on some bonus points that the sportsbook has assigned, usually to the weaker team.
Banker
A bet that is considered to be a sure winner. Another name for this term is “Lock”.
Beard
The beard is a bettor who represents a third-party and bets on their behalf. Another popular term for this person is “Runner”.
Bet
The term denoting an amount staked on the particular outcome of a sporting contest.
Bonus
Usually a lump sum of money that the casino assigns to individual bettors after registration. The offer is bound by internal conditions that determine how it is paid out.
Bonus chasing
The practice of playing at sportsbooks so long as you have a bonus and move on as soon as the bonus has been used up.
Betting exchange
A type of sportsbook where players bet against each other. The website itself acts as a mediator and charges a small fee on each bet.
Bookmaker or Book
An alternative name for sportsbook that is more common outside the United States but is still used in the country. Another colloquial term is “bookie”.
Buying points
A situation whereby a player agrees on inferior odds for the sake of purchasing a better spread, giving the underdog a better chance of winning.
Chalk
The most likely winner of a contest. Usually winning in the majority of situations and also referred to as the favorite.
Closing odds
The last available odds before bettors can no longer place any further wagers ahead of an event’s start.
Commission
The amount charged by a sportsbook on each individual wager.
Correct score
A type of wager whereby a punter
Cover
When the team or player backed by a bettor wins by covering the spread.
Decimal odds
A decimal representation of the betting odds.
Double action
A wager that is dependent on two conditions being met to pay out.
Draw
A type of wager which backs a situation whereby two players or teams end up with a draw.
Each-way
An interesting type of wager which tries to determine two outcomes, such as the placement of a horse in a horse race. In other words, an each-way bet can predict that a horse would place 2nd or 3rd, for example.
Edge
The “edge” is the advantage that a bettor has over the sportsbook thanks to their knowledge and understanding of the sports they are wagering on.
Even money
A betting situation that pays out as much as the initial stake, i.e. 1:1, +100, 2.0.
First half bet
A bet on the first half of a sporting event.
Fractional odds
A type of odds most commonly used in horse racing and the United Kingdom in particular.
Future
A wager placed ahead of an event’s beginning.
Favorite
The most likely winner of a betting selection.
Grand salami
A bet that is betting on the total points scored throughout the day in a single type of competition, i.e. the NBA, NHL, English Premier League (EPL), etc.
Handicap
A type of wager where the sportsbook has given a small edge to the underdog to even out the teams, giving better betting opportunities.
Handle
The total amount that a sportsbook claims in sports betting wagers.
Hedging
A type of betting whereby a bettor spreads his budget across multiple bets and selections in a way that he will end up profiting from his bets.
Home field advantage
A perceived advantage that teams enjoy when playing in front of a home crowd.
In-play betting
Betting on sporting events that are in progress. This type of betting is also referred to as “live.”
Jolly
Another term used to denote the favorite of a competition.
Juice
The commission charged by sportsbooks on each individual bet.
Layoff
A practice used by sportsbooks and players whereby they cover bets at other books to ensure that on the off chance of a big loss, they will recuperate some of it.
Limit
The maximum allowable bet.
Linemaker
A person who defines today’s odds and lines.
Live-betting
The type of betting that takes place during live events as they happen.
Lock
A sure winner, similar to banker.
Longshot
A bet that is unlikely to turn out successful, but that offers a very generous payout.
Match bet
A match bet is a single bet placed on the likely winner of an event.
Moneyline
What is called a “match bet” in the United States.
MVP
The “Most Valued Player” (MVP) in a competition. This could apply to the best player in a single game or the entire league.
No action
A bet that has been voided – either because of the bettor or the sportsbook.
Odds
A mathematical representation of the perceived probability of a player or team winning an event.
Oddsmaker
A person who sets the odds or lines.
Outright betting
A type of wager that is placed on the winner of an entire competition, league, tournament, and so on.
Over
To bet that the final score will go over a pre-determined number.
Parlay
Another name for “accumulator,” i.e. a type of bet where a person bets on multiple events or selections
Payout
The amount that is paid for a winning wager.
Power-ranking
An extremely popular term in American sports whereby punters can get a historical analysis on how well a team or a player has performed in the past and decide their next wagers based on that.
Price
The amount that needs to be staked at a particular game or selection. Just another term for “odds.”
Run line
A specific baseball bet which determines the number of runs in a game.
Sharp
A very successful bettor who has a proven track record of beating the sportsbooks.
Spread
The expected difference in the final result between two contestants, whether individual players or teas.
Steam
An event during which the odds move very quickly because there is a big influx of bets.
Straight bet
A bet on one of the possible outcomes, i.e. winner or bet type.
Teaser
A type of bet whereby the spread can be adjusted.
Ticket
The selection of bets you make.
Tip
A betting prediction which advises on the outcome of a particular game.
Total
A bet placed on the total number of points in a sports betting competition.
True odds
The specific odds that give the most accurate representation of probability of sporting events turning in a specific way.
Under
A bet that a specific number will not be met, i.e. the total number of points in a game.
Underdog
The least likely winner of an event.
Vigorish
The commission that a sports betting agency charges on each individual bet.
Wager
The amount that you place on a sport contest’s outcome. Also a “bet”.
Wise guy
A skilled bettor who can call the outcomes of competitions successfully.

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