sports betting odds

Your Guide to How Sports Betting Odds Work

Understanding how odds operate is one of the most important components of betting on any event, be it cricket betting odds, football betting, or NFL. Furthermore, because sportsbooks frequently offer sports betting odds in various formats, you should know how to understand them so that you always make the best judgments.

If you’re reading this guide, you might be new to sports betting, so we’ll make sure to get you started. Understanding how sports betting odds work is the most critical component of being a successful sports bettor. They are an essential component of any sports wager, and they are used to decide if a gamble is worthwhile. Any bet you place has its potential payoff computed using a combination of the relevant odds and your investment. You’re shooting in the dark without that fundamental understanding!

But don’t worry if all sports betting, betting odds, and sportsbook language confuse you. We’ll go through betting odds in great detail. We define who they are and what function they perform. We also look at the three distinct ways they can be expressed and explain why odds on the same event can change between bookies. 

We can guarantee that after reading this betting odds guide, you will know all you need to about sports betting odds!


What are the odds? Explaining sports betting odds

In the world of sports betting, odds have two functions. First, they are utilized to compute winning wager rewards. When you place a bet with a sportsbook, you’ll be offered odds that determine how much you can win. The greater they are, the more you stand to win in relation to your initial investment.

Second, odds show the possibility of any given outcome occurring. The occurrence is more likely if the odds are lower. This makes excellent logic, as you would expect to win less when betting on a likely event than when betting on an unlikely outcome.

The key to understanding sports betting odds is to see how they are used in practice. For example, consider a tennis match in which the world’s number one player is matched against the world’s number 137th player. 

It stands to reason that the world’s finest player will be judged more likely to win than his opponent. As a result, betting on his success has very low odds, whilst betting on his opponent’s winning has significantly greater odds. Of course, this is a simplified explanation. Still, it provides a general understanding of the role of odds in sports betting.

How to read sports betting odds formats

As you’ll see, the fundamental notion underlying sports betting odds is fairly simple. The fact that there are three different odds forms makes things significantly more complicated:

  • Decimal Odds
  • Fractional Odds 
  • American/ Moneyline Odds

Each of these formats is likely to come up at some point. As a result, it is beneficial to become acquainted with each one. Moreover, they all function in essentially the same way–they are alternative ways of expressing the actual chances for any given stake.

How do decimal odds work in sports betting?

Decimal odds are the most common and easiest to grasp odds format in sports betting. This is because the numerical odds make it easy to identify the favourite and underdog. The team with the lowest decimal odds will be the favourite, while the side with the highest odds is the underdog.

The decimal value that indicates the odds represents the amount of money you could win for a $1 bet. It’s critical to understand that this figure comprises the overall payout as well as the profit. In sports betting, here’s an example of how decimal odds work.

In the Champions League Final, Real Madrid will face Manchester City. Real Madrid is favoured by 2.1 points, while Manchester City is favoured by 2.4 points. However, even when the two numbers are close, it is clear that Real Madrid is the slight favourite because the odds are lower.

So, in this case, if you put $100 on Real Madrid, you would win a total of $210 and profit $110. On the other hand, if you bet on Manchester City and they win, you will gain a total of $240 plus a more gratifying profit of $140. However, keep in mind that there is also the possibility of a draw in the game, which would lead to both of these bets losing.

Also Read: Tips to Figure Out Best Betting Odds in IPL 2022

How do fractional odds work in sports betting?

Moving on to more complex betting formats, fractional odds are the most popular among UK sports gamblers. Slashes or hyphens are commonly used to separate the numbers in these odds.

Some bookmakers, for example, may report fractional odds of 4/1 as 4-1. This implies that winning this bet will net you $4 for every $1 wagered. However, unlike decimal odds, fractional odds do not factor in your original wager. In other words, if you wager $1 on 4/1 odds, you will receive a total payout of $5, which means you will receive your $1 plus a $4 profit.

These fractional odds might be a little more difficult to decipher at times, as they can be given as 5/2, 7/3, or any other figure. Still, keep in mind that the former number indicates your chances of winning in relation to your wager, which is represented by the last number.

Also Read: Tips on IPL Betting – Top Bowler and Top Batsman Betting Odds

How do American/ Moneyline odds work in sports betting?

Moneyline odds are commonly referred to as American odds. This is due to the fact that they are the most common sort of sports betting odds format in the United States. Moneyline odds differ from the previous two. They always include a negative sign when presenting the favorite’s odds and a plus sign when providing the underdog’s odds.

The plus and negative signs function in distinct ways. To be more explicit, the amount behind the negative sign indicates how much money you must wager to win $100. The amount after the plus sign, on the other hand, indicates how much money you may earn by betting $100. This is a little difficult to comprehend as a novice, but it’s not that difficult once you get the hang of it.

Let’s peek at an example to make it more transparent.  Suppose Liverpool is facing Leeds in the FA Cup. Liverpool is the big favourite in this clash, with moneyline odds of -350. If you want to gamble on Leeds, the odds are +380. So, if you bet $100 on Leeds and they win the game, you’d win a huge $380. For instance, to win $100 on Liverpool, you must stake $350.

So, the easy rule of thumb for weighing the chances is to look at the difference between the plus and minus figures. If the differential is significant, the favourite is quite likely to win.

Other frequently asked questions on Sports betting odds

What’s the best sport to bet on?

It all boils down to the sport you are most comfortable with! For example, suppose you grew up playing basketball throughout school and have a solid understanding of the NBA. In that case, you might wish to take basketball bets. The more you know about the game, the teams, and the league dynamic, the more informed your bets will be.

Who determines sports betting odds?

Each sportsbook has its own staff of industry pros who evaluate the likelihood of each game outcome, whether it be a win/loss, player performance, or other elements. Based on their observations, they will generate odds that they believe indicate the probability of the event occurring. Because of this, not all sportsbooks offer the same odds on the same bets.

Which is better among American, decimal, or fractional odds?

It all comes down to personal preference. Most sportsbooks make it simple to move between the three methods. In our perspective, decimal odds are the easiest to understand, but it all depends on what you understand best.

How to find the best sports betting odds?

In the industry, this is referred to as line shopping. Essentially, you choose a single stake and compare the chances for that wager at various sportsbooks. You’ve located the right spot to put your wager if one sportsbook sticks out from the crowd due to much greater odds.

Are sports betting winnings taxable?

Yes, gains from sports betting are the same as winnings from a slot machine or a blackjack table. They are taxable and must be reported on tax returns.

How to pick the best online sportsbook?

There are numerous online sportsbooks available, but not all of them are worthwhile. The best online sportsbooks, like UWin Sports, are licenced and offer multiple payment options, generous bonuses, plus a comprehensive selection of sports wagers and promotions. UWin also has a mobile app that makes it very convenient for sports betting. 

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