People love their sports. And why not? There’s something exciting about watching games and being able to follow the outcomes of your favorite teams and players. Unfortunately, betting on sports is a bit more complicated than just watching games and placing bets on the outcomes. There are a lot of variables that you need to consider, and it can be difficult to figure out exactly what strategy will lead to you achieving your desired results.
To help, we’ve put together a list of everything you need to know about calculating odds in sports betting. It includes information on:
The Basics Of Calculating Odds
First, let’s talk about the basics of calculating oddsmakers. Most bookmakers, including those found at online sportsbooks, provide a service where they will calculate your odds for you. Before getting started, you will want to choose which event you are betting on: will the Yankees win the World Series? Will the Warriors win the NBA Championship? Will the Browns win the NFL Championship?
Whatever the event you are betting on, the bookmaker will give you the odds for each team in the matchup, and you simply need to choose which one you prefer. When it comes down to choosing a betting option, it’s always a good idea to look at the long term odds first. The longer the event’s odds are, the more likely you are to achieve a financial gain if you bet on that team. For example, if you’re betting on the Yankees in the World Series, the best odds you will typically find are around +600. This means that the Yanks have a 1 in 6 chance of prevailing over the Indians in game 7.
On the flip side, if the series goes the full 7 games, you would need to bet on the Indians at odds of +300 to achieve a profit. You would lose money if you bet on the Yankees in Game 7, because the juice (comparison to real money) is not great for longer shots. The same logic applies if you bet on the Bengals to cover the spread in the NFL Championship game, or if you bet on the Cleveland Browns to win the Super Bowl.
As you can see, there’s a big difference between a home team playing at home and a road team playing on the road. The home team will always have an advantage in the sports betting world, as they will be more familiar with the playing surface and the stadium’s noise will help take the edge off. However, you should still calculate the odds and understand the implications of playing at home versus on the road.
Home Field Advantage Is Everything
Once you’ve chosen your event, you can move on to figuring out the home field advantage, if any, for each team. For example, the Kansas City Chiefs have an incredible home field advantage when playing at Arrowhead Stadium. They are 68-36 over the last 5 years, with 28 straight regular season home wins, including 27-0 last year. In 2017, they allowed only 2.6 points per game, the 3rd fewest in the entire NFL.
On the other hand, the Cleveland Browns have an extremely poor home field advantage. In 23 games at First Energy Stadium, they have won only 4 times, with the rest being split between 2 Wild Card wins and a loss. In fact, the only team with a lower average score at home is the Jacksonville Jaguars (2.6 points per game).
Other teams with poor home field advantages include the Miami Dolphins (0-4 ATS, 0.4 ppg), the Cincinnati Bengals (0-6 ATS, 0.6 ppg), the Detroit Lions (0-7 ATS, 0.7 ppg), the Tennessee Titans (1-5 ATS, 1.4 ppg), and the Arizona Cardinals (0-5 ATS, 1.8 ppg).
When Is The Best Time To Bet On Sports?
While most people enjoy betting on their favorite sports during the season, that’s not always the best idea. The best time to bet on sporting events, especially in the U.S., is usually in the preseason. This is because preseason games are almost always less competitive than the regular season games that follow. And less competition usually means better odds.
However, you should always calculate the odds and consider the competitiveness of each game before making your decision. For example, if you’re going to be in Cleveland for the Browns’ game this upcoming Sunday, you might want to wait until after the preseason to place your bets. This will give you the best chance of earning money, since the game will likely be less competitive than usual.
Odds Versus Probabilities
Many people get confused when it comes to calculating the odds and understanding the differences between them and probabilities. The key concept to keep in mind is that odds represent the likelihood of an event occurring. For example, if you bet on the Cincinnati Bengals to cover the spread at -2.5 in a game between the Cleveland Browns and the Kansas City Chiefs, this means you are betting that the Cleveland Browns will cover the 2.5 point spread. In other words, you believe the Browns will win the game by 2.5 points or more. If they do in fact win by 2.5 points or more, your bet will be a profitable one.
On the other hand, if they lose the game by 2.5 points or more, your bet will not be profitable. Instead, you would simply lose 2.5x your original investment, if the spread is -2.5. This is where the probability of the event occurring comes in. If you had put $100 on the Bengals to win the game, and they in fact won by 2.5 points, your profit would be $175, as you would have earned $100 in profit, and the $75 you won would be treated as a loss, thus reducing your bankroll by $75.
To further complicate matters, some sportsbooks will also give you the option of including the juice in your odds. Juice is additional money that the house makes from the bets placed on that site. It is typically included in your odds to make them more attractive to potential bettors. For example, if you’re visiting a brick and mortar sportsbook and you see the juice is 4% in addition to your regular banking hours, you might want to opt for 5% juice, as this will make your odds more appealing to potential gamblers.
How Do You Calculate The Over Under (Under/Over)?
This is one of the more complicated calculations. Essentially, over under betting means you are betting on whether the total number of points scored by both teams will be more or less than the stated number of points. For example, if you bet on the Cleveland Browns to win the Super Bowl, but the total points scored is 48, you would win or lose the bet according to whether or not the total was greater or less than 48. If the total is 48, you win; if the total is 52 or more, you lose.
To calculate the over under (under/over), you need to look at the over and the under combined to create an answer. For example, if you’ve chosen the New England Patriots as your team, and you see they are listed at +2 to win the Super Bowl, this means they win the bet if the total is between 2 and 7. But if the total is 7 or more, the Raiders will win the bet.
Over under betting can be more complicated than just looking at the over and under combined. For example, if you’re in Vegas and you see the over is 7 and the under is 5, it means the bettor will win the bet if the total is between 7 and 12. But if the total is 12 or more, the bettor will lose the bet.
What Is The Line Movement?
When it comes to sports betting, one of the more exciting events to observe occurs when the lines move. This usually means there’s a lot of action in the betting world, as people are constantly placing bets, checking up on their teams’ and players’ odds, and adjusting their wagers accordingly. The key concept to keep in mind when watching this unfold is that the lines usually move in the favor of the home teams. For example, in 2017 the Philadelphia Eagles were the favorites to win the Super Bowl, with oddsmakers giving them a 20% chance of winning. But throughout the season, the lines slowly started moving in the other direction. By the time the Super Bowl came around, the Vikings had moved up to 3.5, and the Eagles were only 1.5, a 20% decline for the favorites.