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Understanding Sports Betting Lines

by ReadyBetGo Editor

Planning on a being a successful sports handicapper? You're going to need to know how to understand betting lines. In this guide I'm going to explain betting lines and provide you with some bettingReadyBetGo EditorThere are occasions when we here at ReadyBetGo want to bring you interesting facts about the gambling industry  When something catches our eye, we will publish it for your enjoyment. 
  strategies to begin utilizing.

What Are the Odds Telling Me?

Here's an example of a NFL point spread bet:

  • Pittsburgh Steelers -3.5 (-110) vs. Baltimore Ravens +3.5 (-110)

The first number listed after each team is the point spread. When the spread is negative, that team is called the favorite and they need to win the game by more than the spread. In this case, the Steelers need to win the game by 4+ points.

When the spread is positive, that team is called the underdog. A point spread bet on an underdog will cash if the underdog wins the match-up or as long as they don't lose by more than the spread. In this case, the Ravens could lose by up to 3 points and still win.

The number in brackets is the odds. For a point spread bet the odds are generally –110 on both sides of the bet. What this means is that for every $110 you bet, you'll win $100 profit. Let's take a look at a money line example to explain the odds better.

  • New York Giants –270 vs. New York Jets +230

In this example the Giants are favored to beat the Jets. How can you determine what team is the favorite? The team with negative odds is the favorite. If both teams have negative odds, the team with the higher number is the favorite, albeit a small one.

Whenever the odds are negative, the number equates to how much you need to bet to win $100. When the number is positive, the number equates to how much you can win on a $100 bet. It's that simple.

In our example, the Giants are priced at –270, which means we need to bet $270 to win $100. The Jets are priced at +230, which means we’d win $230 on every $100 wagered. Simply divide or multiply to determine the risk/payout for any wager.

Sports Betting Strategies

Here are three sports betting strategies to use when betting on sports that are related to the betting lines.

Bet Against the Public: Betting against the public has proven profitable over the years. There are multiple tools to see which way the public is betting. Plus, analyzing the line movement will allow you to determine where the public is betting too.

Reverse Line Movement: When the public is betting Team A, but the line moves the opposite way, that's reverse line movement and generally means that "smart" or "sharp" money has come in on Team B and the bookies are enticing the public to bet Team A.

Major Line Movement: Analyzing betting lines is imperative to find the best value in the market. When a sharp bookmaker moves a line, such as Pinnacle, other bookies take longer to react, which allows bettors to often get value on slow moving lines.

Sports Betting Resources

A collection of valuable tools and guides for sports betting players can be found at OnlineCasinoReports sports section which includes live games streaming, bookie reviews and sports news.

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