A Point spread is a number that represents the projected margin of victory for one team over another in a given sports matchup. Depending on the sport, it may be in the form of points (basketball and football), runs (baseball) or goals (ice hockey and soccer). Home field advantage is often built into a spread as well. Betting lines or odds, as they are called in the industry, are set by sportsbooks or oddsmakers while professional bettors evaluate matchups and assess potential value.
A few things to keep in mind when betting on Point spread:
- Lines can and will shift in the run up to a game, particularly in high volume wagering markets like NFL football. This can be due to a variety of reasons such as injuries, public opinion and even respectable money from’sharp’ bettors.
- When placing a bet on a Point spread, pay attention to the American odds next to it. These are the odds that determine how much you will be paid for your bet. They will be either negative or positive, and they look just like the odds that would appear on a moneyline bet (i.e., +125 or -120). The’moneyline’ odds represent how many dollars you have to bet in order to win $100, while the ‘point spread’ odds show how much you have to bet in order to win a certain amount of money. This information is especially important when determining which team to bet against in a game.