Point Spread Betting: A Beginner’s Guide

Point spread betting is something you must have heard about recently and this is not surprising because it has grown in popularity. It is a popular and widely used method of sports gambling because it is known for providing opportunities for bettors to wager on the outcome of a match while accounting for the perceived team qualification difference. In this piece, we tell you all you need to know about point spread betting.

Point Spread Betting: A Beginner's Guide

Also Read – Navigating the World of Esports Betting: Opportunities and Challenges

Understanding Point Spreads

Point spreads are considered one of the best ways to level up the playing ground by providing a balance between two contrasting teams of different abilities. Usually, in match contests, there is always a favourite team and the underdog. In this type of arrangement, it is expected that the favourite team wins the contest and the underdog team loses the contest. And so to account for the disparity in skill level, oddsmakers usually would assign a number to reflect these differences. The point spread created by the oddsmakers aims to ensure an equal-level betting field. This is done by handicapping the favourite or better team and subtracting some points from their final score while consequently adding the points to the underdog team at the end of the final score. The motive for the adjustment is to ensure equal betting action on both sides.

How Point Spread Betting Works?

The  concept of spread betting might not be easy to grasp and so to avoid ambiguity, let’s use this hypothetical scenario. Imagine that two teams A and B were to play against each other, the oddsmakers set the point spread for Team A as -5.5 and that of Team B as +5.5. From what the oddsmakers assigned, it is very easy to conclude that Team A is the favourite since they have a negative point assigned to them. And so if anyone is to place a bet on Team A winning, to win such a bet Team A has to win by more than  5.5 margin points. On the other hand, team B marked +5.5 signifies underdog. This means that to win a bet on Team B, team B has to lose but not more than 5.5 points or the team has to win by any point margin. Assuming Team A won by 28-20 and you wagered on Team A, the final score of 28 would then be subtracted from 5.5 (28-6.5= 22.5) This means the final score is more than the score of Team B which is 20 and so the bet is successful. Conversely, assuming the bet was on Team B and they probably lost the game with a score of 28-20. The final score adjusted would be (20 +5.5 = 25.5) This means that the final score is still less than that of what Team A has and so, therefore, the bet is still successful. From this illustration, you would see how spread betting provides an equal playing field for bettors and makes it even more interesting and challenging to win.  That said it is very important to point out at this juncture that point spreads are not fixed, they vary from games and sports and are specifically determined by oddsmakers who specialize in analyzing the very factors that affect a team’s performance.  Factors such as injuries, the present form of the team, historical data, and the quality of players present in the team play a huge role in determining the point spread assigned to the team by the oddsmakers. However, to profit from point spread, a well-rounded understanding of it is required. This would help to guide decision-making in the process of betting.

Reading and Interpreting Point Spreads

Basic knowledge of point spread begins with knowing what the positive sign and negative sign stand for. This is because the values used are quoted in negative or positive signs. A positive sign means that the team is the favorite while a negative sign means the team is the underdog. The number behind the negative or positive sign indicates the points where a favourite must win by or a point where the underdog must not exceed in a loss.

Placing Point Spread Bets

Point spread betting offers two options, betting on the favourite team or betting on the underdog team. Unlike the traditional Betting format that allows you to profit only when a team wins, point spread betting can make you profitable even if you bet on the weaker team that has a low chance of winning. And so in point spread betting, you can bet on the favourite team and the underdog. It is just that the favorite team must win by more than the point margin while the underdog team must not lose more than the point margin.

That said, to calculate the potential winnings and payouts in a point spread betting, use the odds associated with the bet. The odds signify the payout ratio.

To be successful at point spread betting, you have to be tactical and have a strategy that helps you analyze and predict the outcome of matches almost accurately. It is important to point out that you would not always get it accurately, there will always be moments of loses

Risks and Considerations

Like every form of betting, point-spread betting has risks associated with it. There are many considerations in point spread betting. Knowing the risk and consideration will guide your expectations.

One of the considerations in prop betting is the payout. This is because the payout is not fixed. It is usually lower for the favourite team and higher for the underdog team. This means you would have to risk more to win more staking with the favourite team. Because of this, it is important to know how to manage risk and play excessively. Failure to not manage risk would yield serious losses which can destabilize you as a person.

Also Read – Mastering Futures Betting: Long-Term Strategies for Sports Betting

In Summary

Point spread betting is no doubt a great way to enjoy sports gambling because of the added excitement and fun it brings to the table. However, it is important to understand how it works.


  • Sophia Reynolds

    Sophia Reynolds is a talented horse racing journalist and writer with a deep-rooted passion for the equestrian world. With a career spanning over 20 years, she has established herself as a highly respected and influential figure in the realm of horse racing journalism. Sophia’s dedication to her craft, combined with her in-depth knowledge of the sport, has made her an authoritative voice in the industry.