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Sport Betting Terms Explained – The Online Betting Glossary A to Z

Those who are starting new in the field of betting can benefit from this list of betting terms. We have comprised a glossary of several betting terminologies from different categories such as online gambling, casino, sports betting, and more.

Betting Terminologies

Action: Placing a wager on a game.

ATS: Commonly referred to as “against the point spread”, the term indicates the record of a team against the point spread.

Backdoor cover: When a spread is covered unexpectedly by a goal scored by a team at the end of the game.

Bad Beat: When a player, who is expected to win, loses. It usually happens when the betting result is not decided until late in a game. The term is also used in Poker game.

Beard: When a person makes a wager on behalf of someone else.

Book: Also known as Sportsbook, it refers to the agency or agent who takes bets from customers.

Bookie: A dealer who accepts illegal bets for a commission.

Buying points: When a bettor instead of placing bets on the set line adjust the odds and alters the line, it is called buying points as he/she is buying some points to alter the set line.

Chalk: The bettors who almost always place bets on the favourite in a game.

Circle game: The game in which the betting limits are decreased, often because of an accident or injury.

Closing line: The final betting line before the start of the game or event.

Consensus pick: The insights in the percentage of how many and which audience is supporting which side in a game.

Cover: The result of betting on a point-spread wager. For an underdog to cover, it has to win outright or lose by less than the spread. A favourite can cover by winning by more than the spread.

Dime: General term for a $1,000 bet.

Dog: Short term for underdog.

Dollar: The term used by bookies to represent a $100 bet.

Edge: An advantage or better probability to win against a sportsbook.

Even money odds: The 50-50 odds where you have to bet the same amount that you wish to win.

Exotic: Also sometimes called a “proposition wager” or “prop”, it refers to any wager other than a parlay or straight bet.

Favourite: The expected winner in a game, from the betting point of view.

Fixed: The process of fixing the result of a game. It is usually done by a bookie by influencing one or more of the game participants.

Futures bet: A long-term wager usually made on an upcoming sports event or a team’s season-long win.

Halftime bet: Bets which are made at the halftime in a game of basketball or football. The dealers usually start with an initial bet and then changes the odds based on the game situation till the halftime.

Handicapper: Someone who tries to predict the winners of a game.

Handle: The amount of money wagered or placed for a bet on an event.

Hedging: Betting on both sides of a bet, usually to ensure a profit. If you have already placed a bet on win/lose, you may sometimes choose to place another bet on a different result than your previous bet. It typically happens in futures bets, and is also done in halftime of individual games.

High-roller: A gambler who likes to play with high stakes.

In-game wagering: Placing wagers in-between an ongoing game, also known as real-time betting.

Juice: The commission taken by a bookie or bookmaker, also called the “vig/vigorish.”

Layoff: Bet between two sportsbook to reduce one another’s liability, usually in exchange for money.

Limit: The maximum bet amount accepted by a sportsbook.

Lock: When the bettor is 100% sure to win a certain wager.

Money-line: A bet in which point spread is replaced by odds and your team either needs to win or lose.

Nickel: General term for a $500 bet, normally used by bookies.

Oddsmaker/Linemaker: A person who decides the odds. He may be the same as a bookmaker or not, depending on whether he/she is just setting the lines or also booking the bets.

Off the board: When a bet is closed by the book and no wagers are accepted on it anymore.

Over/under: the term used to indicate the total points in a game or the total number of games a team can win.

Parlay: A system in which you place bets on multiple teams to increase your winning amount. For the wager to win, all the teams in the parlay must win.

Pick ‘em: When there is no favourite and underdog, and the point spread is zero.

Point spread: The number of points by which favourite is liked over the underdog.

Prop or Proposition bet: A betting within betting, which involves the bets that are not usually displayed on the betting board. Some examples are – which player will score first or which team will score more goals. These bets are especially famous on major sports events, such as Super Bowl.

Push: The situation in which a result is on the betting number and the book has to refund all the wagers made on that particular number.

Runner: Another term for a beard.

Sharp: A professional sports bettor.

Square: A casual gambler who usually plays for fun.

Steam: When a betting (money) line starts moving too fast, often because a group of bettors are placing their bets altogether.

Straight up: The expected winner of a money line.

Teaser: Betting on multiple teams at the same time.

Total: the total expected runs, goals or points in a game.

Tout: A person who sells or gives picks on sporting events.

Underdog: The team that is expected to lose the game. The risk is higher but so is the winning.

Vig: Another term for the “juice.”

Wager: A bet

Welch: When someone doesn’t pay off a losing bet.

Wiseguy: Another term for a “Sharp.”