I’m sure we’ve all been in a situation before where we stare at the list of
games and think to ourselves — if only I could hit a nice 10-team parlay.
Now, depending on the odds of the games you selected, or the amount of
money actually wagered on the parlay, this bet won’t necessarily make you rich, but it could offer up a very nice four- or five-digit
return. The problem with hitting a parlay that size is that it’s damn near
impossible to do. Most experienced bettors refrain from ever making parlay
bets. Thankfully, for sportsbooks, parlays will always be a staple of the
betting game since there is always the potential of that one big payout
every square bettor chases.
In case you are new to the industry, a
parlay is a type of bet
that involves two or more teams. In order for a parlay bet to be
successful, each team involved must win, or
cover the spread
– depending on how you bet them. A parlay can also be called an accumulator
or a combo bet. Parlays are the most popular bet amongst amateur bettors
since it has the potential for the biggest payout.
Different Types of Parlays
A parlay can have a combination of
, point spread wagers and even include the “over/under” option. Some
sportsbooks allow bettors to include different kinds of prop bets,
half-time wagers, different sports and sometimes even
Depending on the type or parlay you make, the payout could be minimal or
significant. A lot of things go into determining the odds, but the main
thing you need to know is that not all sportsbooks offer up the same odds.
Generally speaking, a two-team point spread parlay will pay about 2.5/1,
while a three-team parlay pays 6/1, a four-team parlay pays 10/1 and a
five-team parlay pays 20-1. Obviously, the more teams you decide to put in
your parlay, the higher the odds go.
If you decided to go the parlay route with your money, you must be
completely educated on the rules. Do you know what happens if one of the
games in your parlay is canceled or pushes on the total or point spread? If
you’re reading this, I’m assuming you don’t, so let me give you a better
What Happens to My Bet If My Parlay Has a Canceled Game?
Whether you are playing a point spread parlay on football Sunday, or a
moneyline parlay on Tuesday’s baseball card, the answer to this question
remains the same; ‘it depends’.
It all depends on which sportsbook you are using and what their rules are
for parlays. Most sportsbooks do not punish bettors for having a canceled
game on their parlay ticket. The ticket will go on as if that canceled game
For example, if you put together a five-team parlay and the fourth game on
your ticket between the New York Mets and Washington Nationals gets
canceled due to rain, your parlay is still live, but it just reduces to a
four-team parlay and the payout is adjusted accordingly.
What Happens to My Bet if My Parlay Has a Push On it?
This is where it gets a little bit dicey, but as I said above the answer
still depends on which sportsbook you use. Most sportsbooks try to avoid
setting full-point point spreads such as -3 or -7 in order to be able to
declare a winning and losing side. If by the off chance you can get a whole
number and that game happens to fall right on that number, most sportsbooks
just void that leg of the parlay and reduce the payout to the next number –
which is the same procedure as above. A five-team parlay would then turn
into a four-team parlay and the odds would adjust.
However, it should be noted that some sportsbooks treat pushes as losses.
That means that just because you got a great number of -3 instead of -3.5,
you are still needing to win by four in order to avoid losing your parlay.
These parlays increase the difficulty of the wager and should be avoided at
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