Before we had the options of wagering on future bets, parlays, teasers, alternative lines, Asian lines, prop bets and each-way, there was one betting option that reigned supreme. It was the money line bet. From a non-gambling perspective, winning a game in any sports will make a team happy. However, depending on the score, that win may not please bettors. That’s because the point spread betting option has taken over as the popular option, leaving the money line far behind. If you are the kind of person who bets on your favorite team each and every game, this is the bet for you. There is nothing worse than watching your team win the game, but lose you money by not covering the point spread.
What Does Money line Mean?
The money line bet is the simplest form of betting in the industry. A “money line” bet is a way of betting on which team is going to win the game outright, or which individual will win an event. With a money line bet, the margin of victory or the total number of points a team scores do not matter. If you like the Patriots to win outright versus the Browns, a 3-0 win would win you just as much money as a 77-0 win.
Unfortunately, the profit from winning a money line bet could be drastically different depending on if you bet on the favorite or underdog.
Money Line Odds
The money line bet always relates to bets of $100. A favorite will be represented by a negative money line figure such as -180. This means that in order to profit $100 off your winning bet, you would need to risk $180 dollars. But as I’m sure you already know, you can risk any amount you are comfortable with and the payment (should you win) will be in proportion to the odds. For example, a $50 bet on a -180 line would win you $27 dollars.
When betting an underdog on the money line, you will notice that they have a positive price attached to them. For example, if the underdog you like was +195, a $100 bet would profit you $195 dollars for every hundred put down.
The money line odds will always be different aside from the plus or minus – those are the only constant. The favorites will always have a negative value, which is how the sportsbooks make their money.
What Sports Can I Bet the Money Line On?
You can bet the money line option in every single sport that is offered up. It is the simplest form of betting and it is also the primary way to bet sports in which a point spread isn’t available (think hockey or baseball). Money line wagers are also available in football and basketball, but the point spread wager is much more popular. It is also used in tennis, golf, boxing, MMA, cricket, table tennis, and any other sport you can think of that has a winner at the end of the game.
Are Money Lines the Best Betting Option?
Money line bets are particularly attractive to square bettors when they are looking at underdogs. They see a nice high positive number and think that the payoff is significant enough to be worth the risk. Unfortunately, underdogs are underdogs for a reason, and it’s usually because they aren’t very good. However, when the right opportunity presents itself, a money line bet on an underdog can grow your bankroll quicker than betting favorites would.
Money Line Calculator
Now days, most online betting sites have the money line calculator built right into the betting window. It’ll tell you how much you stand to win on any bet amount you can think of. If you find yourself in a Las Vegas sportsbook and have to quickly do the math, here is how to do it.
Example 1: Underdogs
Potential Profit = Stake x (odds/100).
$50 Stake on +120 odds.
$50 x (120/100) =
$50 x 1.20 = 60
Potential Profit = $60.
Total potential profit + Stake =
$60 + 50
Example 2: Favorites
Potential Profit = Stake / (odds/100)
$50 Stake on -200 odds.
$50 / (200/100) =
$50 /2 = 25
Potential Profit = $25.
Total potential profit + Stake =
$25 + 50
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