Sports Betting Analytics

Selecting winning sides, whether team betting on games lines or prop wagering on superstar players, is the end goal of every handicapper. There is however yet another equally important component that determines how much the wagers are worth. Buying the best odds, at the best prices, has a huge impact on a bankroll bottom line. We hope you enjoy this Under The Numbers video series that explains how to read betting odds.

Under The Numbers

Similar to the stock market, though we believe safer and more transparent, sports betting is largely a numbers game. Everyday, bookmakers post a wide variety of odds that all have different prices. Like purchasing Apple stock, the best sports teams cost the most to bet on. As explained below in our Under The Numbers video tutorial series, understanding betting odds is a huge key to success.

How Do Odds Work

In order to understand the age old “how do odds work” question, it is best to begin with and an explanation of standard lines and their function relative to the bottom line of the sportsbooks. Against the spread (ATS) odds are a bookmakers bread and butter as they are the easiest lines to ensure a no risk profit. In a perfect world, an NFL line offering Pittsburgh +4 (-110) vs New England -4 (-110) will attract an equal amount of money on both sides. For simplicity sake, let’s say one $100K wager is placed on both options. In this scenario, the bookmakers would end up paying out $90,909 to the winning punter and then pocket a risk free $9,091 profit from the losing side. 

Being as we don’t live in perfect world, sportsbooks sometimes see a number “get away” due to it being bet heavily on one side and then they have a risk to deal with. When that happens, lines get changed, either the odds or prices, in an attempt to get back to the perfect middle. For instance, if the New England line has a large amount bets, bookmakers may move the odds to Patriots -4.5 and Steelers +4.5 to entice more Pittsburgh money into the mix. Depending on the risk they are facing, bookmakers may choose to hold the line and change the prices. In this instance the (-110) cost on both bets could change to (-115) New England and dropped to (-105) on Pittsburgh.

Perhaps the simplest of all odds, money lines are a popular wagering option at top rated betting shops like Bodog that require bettors to pick the match winner – without giving or receiving any points. Favorites are listed with a negative line while underdogs receive a positive price. A wager on a (-200) money line requires a $200 investment to gain a $100 return while a (+200) ML requires a $50 bet to earn a $100 profit. The catch of course is that the chalk side will normally be the better of the two teams. Stay connected with us as we will be updating our Learn To Earn betting advice series on a regular basis. In the meantime, feel free to surf around our sportsbook review section to learn more about the top rated online bookmakers that we recommend in the table below. 

About: Stats don’t lie. But not one stat tells the whole truth. Start your research wherever you want: (wins, losses, streaks, defending champs). But if you dig deeper and look under the numbers, you’ll find the stats that can help you make better bets.