Getting in The Game: Sports Betting – All You Need to Know

Supreme Court Sports Betting

Sports betting continues to surge in popularity across the US. With more states legalizing wagering, both casual fans and seasoned handicappers are looking to get in on the action.

But for beginners, all the terms and options can be confusing. This guide offers a Sports Betting 101 overview to help you understand the basics.

What is Sports Betting?

What is Sports Betting

Simply put, sports betting involves placing wagers on the outcome of sporting events. Bettors try to accurately predict game or match results in order to win money at Pame Stoixima apotelesmata.

Many different sports can be bet, from NFL football to NBA basketball, MLB baseball to NHL hockey, and more.

While illegal for decades, legal US-based sports betting has exploded since 2018 when the Supreme Court overturned PASPA. This federal law had largely prohibited wagering outside Nevada. Now, more than 30 states allow online sportsbooks to operate.

As the industry grows, novices and veterans alike have an opportunity to try handicapping their favorite sports. But understanding core concepts is critical to success and responsible play.

Key Betting Terms to Know

Before you can learn winning strategies, getting familiar with common vocabulary is a must. Here are six need-to-know words and phrases:

  • Moneyline: Wagers placed on a game or match outcome without a point spread. Simply pick the winning team.
  • Spread: Betting line set around the likely margin of victory. Favorites must win by more than the spread; underdogs by less.
  • Over/Under: Total combined points scored prediction. Bettors choose whether they think scoring will exceed or fall below the total.
  • Parlay: Single bet linking together two or more wagers. All legs must hit to payout.
  • Push: Tie outcome between the favorite and underdog against the spread. Original stakes are returned.
  • Handle: Total dollar amount of placed wagers. Often used to measure sportsbook revenue.

Getting comfortable with these key terms will make understanding more complex concepts much easier later on.

Betting Options Overview

Betting Options in sports betting

While you may hear about people simply betting on who will win, there are actually dozens of wager types to choose from.

Each has unique rules and payouts. Here is a comparison of some of the most popular:

Bet Type Description Example Payout
Moneyline Pick a team to win outright Team A (-200) vs Team B (+180)
Point Spread Pick a team to cover margin set by oddsmakers Team A -7 (-110) vs Team B +7 (-110)
Totals Predict whether teams will score over or under set total points Over 139 points (-105) / Under 139 points (-115)
Parlay Combine multiple picks into a single bet +500 2-team parlay
Futures Wagers placed on long-term outcomes like championship winners +750 to win Super Bowl
Prop Bets Fun wagers on outcomes other than final score Will player X have over/under 25 points

These represent just a glimpse of the many ways to bet. Even more variety can be found for individual sports. Spending time learning guidelines for the most popular options is advisable.

How to Place Your First Bet

Ready to put some real money on the line? Signing up at an online sportsbook makes placing initial wagers simple. Just follow this process:

Step 1: Select Your Sportsbook

With so many sites competing for your business, doing some research to pick the right one matters.

Factors like available sports, odds and lines, promotions, reputation, and mobile experience differ across legal operators. DraftKings, FanDuel, Caesars, BetMGM, and PointsBet are among the top brands.

Step 2: Create Your Account

Opening an account only takes a few minutes. You’ll need to enter some personal verification info as required by gaming regulations. This includes full name, DOB, address, last 4 SSN. You’ll also set banking details for easy deposits/payouts.

Step 3: Make a Deposit

Most sportsbooks accept all popular payment methods – credit/debit cards, e-wallet transfers like PayPal or Skrill, direct bank account deposits, prepaid vouchers, etc. Minimum amounts vary but often start around $10.

Step 4: Place Your Bet!

With funds in your account, now the fun starts! Use the sportsbook’s interface to browse upcoming events and odds. Once you pick a wager that looks appealing, click the associated odds button to add it automatically into your betslip cart. Confirm the details look right, enter your stake amount, and submit the bet.

Watch the action unfold and check back later to (hopefully) collect your payout! It’s truly that straightforward to begin actual real-money sports wagering.

Future of US Sports Betting

Future of US Sports Betting

While already massive, the regulated American sports betting industry appears poised for even greater growth in coming years as more jurisdictions introduce their own legal frameworks.

With increasingly competitive mobile offerings, savvy marketing initiatives, and surging public acceptance, analysts predict the current ~$3 billion market could reach as high as $10 billion by 2028.

For sports fans, this translates into an exciting new era where engaging even more deeply with beloved teams and athletes by putting some skin in the game drives added enjoyment.

Now is the perfect time to gain the basic Sports Betting 101 knowledge to start cashing in on the action.