Video: Spread Betting

Find out what it means when a team "covers the spread", and learn about why spread betting is among the most popular wager types.

Spread betting is among the most popular types of bets in sports betting – I am sure that by now you’ve heard the term covering the spread.

But what does that mean and how does spread betting work?

In a sport event that has a perceived favorite, bookmakers apply a spread to create an even playing field. You can look at it as an equalizer for the sportsbooks that truly creates a 50/50 matchup.

Covering the spread refers to betting on a team to win by more than a specified amount.

In a previous video, we talked about making a moneyline bet, and that odds with a negative number indicate the favorite and odds with a positive number refer to the underdog.

In a spread bet, the favorite must “cover” the amount of points on the spread. The underdog, must not lose by more points than indicated in the spread.

Here’s an example. Knicks are playing the first-place Boston Celtics. The Celtics are favored by 5.5 points. What you would see is Celtics -5.5.

Here’s what would need to happen for you to win the bet.

  • If you bet Celtics -5.5, Boston must win the game and win it by 6 points
  • If you bet the Knicks +5.5, New York can win the game outright and you’d win OR the Knicks can lose, but they must lose by less than 5 points
  • If you bet the Celtics -5.5 and they won 111-108 – you would lose that bet

Pretty simple right?

Make sure to watch our other videos and don’t forget to join our community for more betting tips.


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