Ultimate Spread Betting Guide: Winning Wagers in Spreads

Spread Betting Guide image

📖 Published on: February 21st, 2024

✍️ Updated: February 27th, 2024

⏳ 12 mins read


Spread betting is one of the best ways to enjoy winning multiple wagers in almost every sport out there. Point spreads have become a popular trend in the sports betting industry, and a lot of punters favor it most of the time compared to other markets, which makes it a vital part of a player’s hope of winning big prizes whenever they place their wagers.


From basketball, soccer, American football, baseball, ice hockey, and many other popular sports out there, spread betting is a great way for you to get started on your winning track night in and night out. Get the bang for your buck by learning more about spread betting as GambleSpot discusses the tips and tricks that can help you rack up the winnings you’ve been looking for!


What is Spread Betting?


Spreads help even the odds between playing teams in any game. This creates a handicap that will put respective points between the two opposing teams, and all you have to do is to bet on a team to either win or lose while meeting the required points for your bet to win. This means you have to be sure that the set number is met, or else the wager is considered a loss.


These point spreads are placed on a team – depending if they are expected to win the given game or lose by a specific amount of points. Most of the time, many bookmakers have always set a number that is close to the expected final score, and it would be close to an even number as well. Some punters find this frustrating as there are instances that a game goes down to the wire, and closing plays can even affect your wager even if the game is clearly won.


How to Bet on Spreads?


Winning in spreads is not that hard. With the odds leveled thanks to the handicaps, you can use that to your advantage to gauge the chances of winning or losing depending on the team you’re betting on. Of course, not all handicaps are the same, and the number changes depending on the sportsbook and the playing teams, which is why you should learn how to bet on spreads.


For example, Team A is a favorite to win in the game with a -7.5 on the point spread. This means that they will need to win the game and reach a margin of more than eight points, anything else lower than that ends up a loss – even if the team wins. However, if Team B is an underdog by +3.5 in the spread, then the team just needs to win outright or lose the game – which is expected – by three or fewer points for the bet to be considered a victory.


Spread Betting in Various Sports


Spread betting applies to almost every sport in the world, but you have to keep in mind that there are differences when it comes to scoring, especially in some sports that have high scoring. This is why you should consider learning how to place wagers on the spread for different sports and find out how they work. 


Here’s how you bet on spreads on different sports:


NBA Spread Betting


NBA Spread Betting image


The NBA is one of the highest scoring leagues in the world, and spread betting here is an enjoyable turn as these games bring the thrill for four quarters of basketball action. Each game has ups and downs, and you can expect intense finishes all the way to big blowouts. For the spread, the favorite is assigned with a margin of victory, and they will need to win more than the set number, while the underdog bet is a win if they win the game by the final buzzer or lose less than the spread set.

Basketball spread betting allows you to make the most of your chances. Most of the time, it is safe to bet on the underdog as winning the game outright will see your money cash in, and so do they losing just well below the set margin.


It is also a no-brainer that betting on the favorite can get you the best chance of winning, but the underdog bet is a rewarding one.


NFL Spread Betting


Betting on NFL spreads is a little bit different than in the NBA, since scoring is not that big in the league. Still, the spreads are assigned on a weekly basis, shortly after the games from Sunday Night Football. Favorites need to win based on the assigned spread or more, while the underdogs bets will have to either win, or lose the game no more than the set handicap.

Depending on the games, it seems that there are a lot of possibilities for the NFL in terms of results. Most of the time, there are a lot of close games – which makes the point spreads more fun and profitable to wager on in the long run.


NFL Spread Betting image


NHL Puck Line Betting


NHL Puck Line Betting image


The NHL offers a different betting pattern on the spread compared to other sports. It has the lowest scoring and can even lead to shootouts by the end of the game. Puck line betting is just another term for spread betting. Most of the time you can see a +1.5 spread on hockey games and then wonder “what does +1.5 mean?” and why it is so low.

Most of the time, teams win by either one, two, or three goals at most. The favorite needs to cover the spread, scoring one more than the set spread. On the other hand, the underdog bet will be a win if they beat the favorites, or they lose the game no more than the set handicap.


MLB Run Line Betting


Same with the puck line for the NHL, the Run Line betting is unique to baseball and the MLB. Much like in hockey, the score is not usually high in games, and one can even wonder “what does minus 1.5 mean in betting” in baseball - which marks the favorites. It goes without saying that there are a lot of enjoyable games in baseball, but betting on the Run Line allows punters to predict scoring in the game after every point scored. The team picked to win will usually have a favorable run line number to begin with, and they just need to win the game while scoring above the set number. For underdogs, on the other hand, they will need to beat the favorites for the bet to win, or lose below the set run line.


MLB Run Line Betting image


Soccer Spread Betting


Soccer Spread Betting image


Soccer is a unique sport when it comes to spreads. The point spread usually evens out two unevenly matched clubs, and a separation of at least 1 to 3 goals. There are some instances in which games also end up in a draw, whether both teams managed to score a goal or not – and money is returned in some betting sites as well.

But just like any other sport, the favorites just need to win the game more than the set handicap, while the underdogs have to beat the odds and win outright, or lose the game by no more than the spread set.


What is a Push in Spread Betting?


Some games end up in a tie, but did you know that a tie is also possible in spread betting? Yes, it is possible where a stalemate occurs as neither the punters nor the sportsbook ends up winning in the bet. It happens when opposing teams and players end up with a tied score at the end of the game – with the option to bet on a tie not available, resulting in a returned money instead.


A push can also happen when a sports event is canceled, which is common among many leagues for various reasons. Punters will get their money back in a snap after that and will have the chance to bet on the same game again if the leagues choose to reschedule it and so on. This is also the same for other bets if a game is canceled.


Tips in Betting on Spreads


There are plenty of tips and tricks that you can consider in betting on spreads, and it is a no-brainer that you can try to make the most of your chances to win handsome rewards in any game you wager on. GambleSpot has piled up some handy tips that will help you get the best shot at winning in each spread you wager on.


  1. Learn about the playing teams - the playing teams differ from time to time, and there is a lot to consider especially with their chances of winning. Learning more about the playing teams gives you an edge on how the game can turn out and what you should expect in the results.
  2. Check the roster of the playing teams - not all teams or players come in healthy night in and night out. This is why it is a must to see if a team comes into a game at full strength or not. Injuries have to be taken into account, especially if there are multiple changes to the team.
  3. Consider the last five games - the last five games are a huge factor in a team’s winning chance. It cannot be denied that it also determines the odds before the actual game, and it sets the pace for the playing teams, which affects how they will perform.
  4. See head-to-head stats - head-to-head stats are also a promising option to check out if you want to gain some extra knowledge about the team’s history against another. It plays a huge role on how well they will try to win games, especially if this is a rivalry game.
  5. Always Check the Odds - the odds aren’t set by the sportsbook for nothing. It means that the odds are there to serve as a guide – letting you know which team has the best chance to win overall, and while it doesn’t determine the actual winner, it provides insight on which team will likely end up winning.


Make the Most of Your Spread Betting Chances


Spread betting is as fun as it can be. These are good options in betting, and it doesn’t really risk a lot compared to future bets and so on. It also allows you to bet on the underdog without really losing a lot as a win for the underdog means a win for your bet. Your bets will be much more flexible when you try to go for spreads. Enjoy top-notch betting by trying to wager on spreads in various sports today!


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