Review: the Money Line (denoted on the board as ML) means the bettor is strictly betting on who will win the game, match, fight, etc. Betting on the Money Line does not include a spread (a spread is the amount of points the sportsbook has decided to add/subtract from a team depending on whether they are favored to win or not; also known as a line). Think of it as making a bet with your friend; whoever wins the game wins.
There are positives and negatives to betting on money lines. They are generally easier to win than a bet with a spread involved, but the payout is not as good; sometimes the payout is so bad it is not even worth your money to bet on it. For example Boise State is playing UNLV this weekend. Boise State’s money line odds are -30,000 (so you have to bet $30,000 to win $100). This is completely ridiculous.
So maybe you’re thinking what if I parlay the money line bets? This is a great idea and usually gives the bettor a better chance at winning some substantial money. However there is a strategic way to do this as well. First of all most sportsbooks only let you take a maximum of 8 teams/picks off the board on 1 ticket. I usually like to pick all of the teams I think will win outright that week and then I analyze what each team’s money line odds are. When parlaying it is OK to have teams with outrageous odds, but when they get into the thousands or ten-thousands the teams are actually hurting your possible payout by being on the ticket. For example, this morning I went into the sportsbook and wanted to bet an 8-team money line parlay ticket (college football) that looked like this:
|San Diego State||-20000|
A $20 wager on a ticket like this would win me $3.60. It seems kind of ridiculous to pick 8 winners correctly and only win 3 bucks. By all means if you’re OK with winning $3 that’s fine; winning is winning and you would still walk away with $3 more than you had earlier, and chances are this will be a winning ticket with all these favorites. For those of you looking to win more money, if you stay between the -250 to -900 ranges as far as odds go you will at least win double of whatever you wager on an 8-team money line parlay.
So remember smart betting also means deciding when it is or isn’t worth it to even put money down; always analyze what you’re betting.
*Follow me on Twitter @blakelederman to see my weekly prediction(s) #blakesbets.