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Home -> MLB -> What Is a Betting Spread?

What Is a Betting Spread?

Sport betting spreads are beyond a simple “win/lose” scenario. While most times in betting there is an underdog, the betting spread is a handicap toward the one less likely to win. The payoff for a betting spread is on the accuracy of the wager, not on the end result, which creates a dynamic bet between each side, despite the fact that the win/lose outcome seems obvious.

Because it is assumed that there will be half on one side and half on the other, its implication is that it will be a 50-50 win/lose scenario, which allows the bookmaker a profit from commissions. The winning team only needs to win by the bare minimum rules of the game to get their result. There is no margin of victory, which means that the winning team would probably not attempt to extend their margin, and the players are there to win, not beat the point spread.

What does this mean for sports? Well, it’s important to be aware of this kind of betting because it is quite popular, and in many ways, it levels the playing field. The – sign is always representative of the favorite, while the + sign represents the underdog. An example of the bet is this: say, the Colts are the general favorite. For them to cover 3.5 points, they should win by at least 4 points so you win your bet. If you bet the Giants instead, they can lose by up to 3 points or win the game, and you win your bet.

An important part of betting spreads is known as the push. If the favorite team wins by the exact amount set for the betting spread, your betting amount would be returned. Hope this helps the budding sports bettors out there and gives them some insight.

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