# What Does -1.5 Mean in the Vegas Betting Line?

I could write an entire book on the Vegas betting line. Just check out any online resource for betting info and you’ll see what I mean.

As a general rule of thumb, you can use the -1.5 in the Vegas betting line to determine the over/under on how a particular game will unfold. The under is (-1.5) and the over is (+1.5). Using these numbers literally is the easiest way to get a general feel for the game, but it can be a little more tricky than that. The linesman’s strike, the weather, and the health of a few key players all can affect the outcome of a game and, therefore, the over/under. When you factor in all of these variables, it’s no wonder why you should always use a bit of mental math in your betting decisions.

## Why Are The Vegas Lines So Complicated?

The most straightforward way to look at the Vegas lines is as a guideline for where you should place your wager. As a rule of thumb, if you see a game has an over (-1.5) or an under (+1.5) then you should usually bet on that side. Keep in mind that these are just general guidelines and you should never blindly follow them. You need to use your best judgement to place your wager based on the circumstances surrounding each particular game.

## Odds & Probabilities

One of the things you’ll notice about the Vegas lines is that they don’t include any sort of margin of error or variance. That means the over/under is exactly what it is and there’s no room for error. Don’t expect to win or lose several thousand dollars based on the line alone. The chances of you winning are more or less the same as the chances of the other team winning. It’s not like sports gambling, where you have a better chance of winning if you bet on the underdog. The lines are set in stone and there’s no magic formula to making sure you come out on top. The only way is by having a bit of brains when betting.

## The History Of The Vegas Line

The Vegas lines are fairly new. This past year they’ve gained a lot of popularity and sportsbooks around the country have started using this line to give an idea of how they see the match proceeding. Before then, most sportsbooks simply used to list the odds of each team winning the game. This made it really hard to compare odds between games or between leagues (mostly because the teams can change). The Vegas lines solve that problem by defining an over/under on each game and then compiling all of the information into one spot.

## Making Sense Of The Vegas Line

Even when you have a good understanding of the Vegas lines, it can still be difficult to figure out what exactly they mean. Some games have simple lines where the over/under is as easy to comprehend as the score of the game, while other games can be a little more complicated. You’ll need to look at the facts surrounding the game to determine what the over/under is exactly.

## What’s The Difference Between The Vegas Line, Point Spread, And Margin Of Victory?

There are three different types of betting lines: the Vegas line, the point spread, and the margin of victory. The first two are similar in that they’re both determining factors of whether or not you’ll win or lose when placing a wager on a sporting event. The third one is a bit different and serves a different purpose. The point spread and the margin of victory are used to determine the exact amount you’ll win or lose when placing a wager on a game. For example, if the spread is 3 and you’ve got a \$100 winning bet, you’ll win \$300. If the spread is 3 and you bet \$100, you’ll win \$100.

In most cases, you can use the margin of victory to figure out what the over/under is. Let’s say you have the spread set to 3 and the victory margin is 2. That means your team won by 2 points and you can use the 2.5 in place of the 3 to determine the over/under. If you see a game has an odd score (i.e., 12-10), you can use the point spread to figure out what the over/under is, but you can’t use the margin of victory because the score is an exact tally. The example above with the 12-10 is a typical scenario where you can’t use the margin of victory to figure out the over/under. In those cases, you have to use the point spread or the Vegas line to come up with an estimate of how the game’s going to play out. With the example above, you can see it was a close game and the point spread didn’t give you much of an indication of how it would all play out. In reality, the 12-10 isn’t that uncommon and it can happen that a game with an even score will have a huge impact on the final result. There are just certain situations where you can’t use one of those three metrics to figure out the final score.

## The Rise of The Vegas Line

In 2018, you’ll see a lot more and more casinos and sportsbooks adopting the Vegas line as the standard for how they determine the outcome of games. It’s no secret the lines have taken the country by storm and it’s simply a matter of time before they reach the rest of the world. If you’re used to placing wagers on traditional sporting events, this change will come as a bit of a shock. It won’t be long before you start seeing lines like this:

And these kinds of lines will only become more commonplace as the world is forced to adapt to the new normal of gaming. You’ll also start to see the linesman’s strike, the weather, and the health of a few key players all affect the final outcome of a game and, therefore, the over/under. When you factor in all of those variables, it’s no wonder why you should always use a bit of mental math in your betting decisions.