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So, our team have put together this handy sports betting glossary with the need-to-know phrases and words to get you started.

  • Across the board – when you bet on a horse to win, place, and show.
  • Arbitrage bets – this is a technique you use to place a wager on each potential outcome with a range of sports books, in the hope of generating profit no matter the outcome of the game.
  • Bookmaker – the person or betting websites that accept wagers.
  • Buying points – when you pay extra to adjust the point spread in your favour.
  • Chalk – the favourite to win.
  • Covering the spread – winning against the point spreader. If a favoured team covers the spread, it means they’ve won by a big enough margin to overcome the spread’s imposed point reduction.
  • Even money – a bet that doesn’t include odds or “vigorish.”
  • First-half bet – a bet for the first half of a game.
  • Futures – betting on something in advance.
  • Juice – the commission the bookmaker makes when it accepts a wager. Also called “vigorish.”
  • Limit – the maximum amount that may be wagered on a game before the bookmaker alters the points or odds.
  • Money line – a wager that doesn’t involve a spread.
  • Oddsmaker – the person that creates the betting lines.
  • Off the board – a game or event not offered by betting websites of the bookmaker.
  • Parlay bets – sports betting on two or more teams. The first wager goes on the winner and the initial bet goes towards the next wager. To collect money from this kind of bet, all picks have to be correct. These are tricky wagers, but they can offer handsome payouts.
  • Point spread bet – wagers where the favourite team has the final score reduced and the underdog’s final score is increased. That adjusted final score determines if you win or lose.
  • Prop bets – these bets challenge you to predict the outcome of a future game, event, or series.
  • Push – a wager that ends without a loser or a winner.
  • Reduced juice bets – this is when a sports book offers lower commission on wagers. It may be offset by worse odds on a particular team – most often the favourite team.
  • Sharp – an experienced gambler who doesn’t make silly mistakes and usually makes a good income with sports betting.
  • Steam – a line that moves quickly in one direction with significant momentum.
  • Straight bet – a bet placed on a single athlete, team, or horse.
  • Teaser bets – wagers on two or more teams where the line for each moves in your favour.
  • Totals bet – or over/under – challenges you to predict if the combined scores of two teams will be lower or higher than the oddsmaker’s number.
  • Tout – a service or person selling picks on upcoming games.
  • Underdog – the team considered most likely to lose.
  • Vigorish – the fee the bookmaker charges to accept wagers.
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