Here’s a sports betting glossary of the common terms and definitions used in betting:
Accumulator – Also known as a Parlay or multiple. A multiple bet where two or more bets are chosen and all these selections must win for the accumulator to payout.
Action – A bet/wager.
Added Game – A game that is not part of Las Vegas regular posted as an accommodation to customers.
Advantage – Also known as the edge or juice. It is a bookmaker’s commission.
Ante Post – A bet that is placed in advance predicting the outcome of a future event. Also known as Futures.
Arbitrage – Where a variation in odds available allows a bettor to back both sides and guarantee a win.
ATS – ‘Against the Spread’ – taking points rather than betting with the spread and laying points.
Backed – A bet selection that is proving very popular with much betting support.
Bad beat – losing under exceptional circumstances.
Banker – Highly expected to win – the favourite amongst all of the favourites.
Bank roll – How much credit there is in a bettor’s sportsbook account.
Bar Price – The odds of selections at their last quoted price.
Beard – Someone who places bets in order to hide the true identity of the true bettor.
Betting line – a priced wager of any kind. Essentially, a betting opportunity.
Bettor – someone that makes a bet.
Book – An establishment that accepts bets.
Bookmaker/Bookie – The person that creates odds for people to bet on.
Bonus – Rewards granted by bookmakers/sportsbooks for bettors/members.
BR – Abbreviation for a bankroll.
Bridge Jumper – A bettor that specializes in large show bets on odds-on favourites.
Buck – A bet of $100.
Burlington Bertie – The price of 100-30.
Buying Points – A bettor pays to receive half a point or more in his favor on a spread game. AKA Moving line.
Buy Price – In Spread or Index betting, the higher figure quoted by an Index Bookmaker.
Canadian Line – A combination point spread and money line in ice hockey.
Chalk – The favourite.
Chalk Player – A bettor that wagers on favourites most of the time.
Churn – the effect of betting and re-betting money.
Circled Game – A game where the bookmaker limits the max bet.
Closing Line – The final list of point spreads offered before the game.
Combo bet – Selecting any number of teams/horses to finish first and second in either order.
Cover – To bet the spread by the required number of points.
Dime bet – a $1000 wager.
Dime Line – a betting line where the juice is 10%.
Dollar bet – a $100 wager.
Double – A bet on 2 separate events or two parts of the same event.
Drift – odds that have lengthened
East Coast Line – Mainly used in (ice) hockey, which has a split-goal line.
Edge – A bookmaker’s commission. Also known as Advantage, vigorish and juice.
Even money – A 1.1 odds bet.
Event – Another term for a race, tournament, match or any betting contest.
Exacta – A selection of two horses to come 1st and in 2nd in a race in exact order.
Exotic Wager – Any other action bet aside from a straight bet or parlay.
Exposure – the amount of money the bookmaker actually stands to lose on a game.
Extension – the amount of money the bookmaker potentially will lose on a game.
favourite – the likely and anticipated winner of a game/race.
Figure – the amount owed to or by a bookie.
Filly – A female horse that is 4 years old or under.
Final four – The remaining four college teams from an original field of 64.
Firing – the act of betting large amounts.
First Half bet – a bet solely for the outcome of the first half of a game.
Fixed game – A game in which at least one of the competitors/teams wilfully manipulates the outcome of the game.
Fixed odds – If the odds are fixed when you make your bet, the odds remain the same until the settlement of the bet.
Flag – 23 bets; a Yankee plus 6 single stakes about bets in pairs on 4 selections in different events.
Flash – change of odds information on tote board.
Flea – a low-wagering bettor that continually requests bonuses.
Fold – an indication of the number of selections in an accumulator (e.g. 6-fold – 6 selections).
Forecast – Also known as a Perfecta or Exacta. It means wagering on what selection finishes 1st and 2nd for a particular event. Forecasts can be straight, reversed or permed.
Form – the previous placing/results of a team/competitor. For example, the previous six-match form of English soccer side Manchester United could be win, win, draw, lose, lose, lose.
Full cover – All the doubles, trebles and accumulators involved in a given number of selections.
Future / Ante post. A bet on the outcome of a major event.
Grand Salami – The total number of goals scored in a complete day of hockey matches.
Gross win – a win before expenses.
Half a dollar – $50.
Half time bet – a bet placed only on the second half of a game.
Handicap / Spread. A bet where the favored side has points deducted and the underdog points added to even up the bet.
Handicapper – Someone that studies and wagers on sporting events.
Handle – Total amount of bets taken.
Hang Cheng – The Asian equivalent of a point spread.
Hedging – Placing bets on the opposite side in order to cut losses or guarantee a minimum amount of winnings.
Heinz – A multiple bet – 57 bets involving 6 selections in different events (15 doubles, 20 trebles, 15×4 folds).
Hold – The percentage the house/sportsbook wins.
Hook – Half a point added to football and basketball betting lines.
Hot game – A game that has had many wagers on one side by handicappers.
House – The slang term for the bookmaker, sportsbook or betting establishment that offers betting lines.
Index Betting – AKA spread betting.
In the money – A horse that finished first, second or third.
Joint favourite(s) – 2 competitors who have equal lowest pricing.
Juice – Also known as the Edge and vigorish, a bookmaker’s commission.
Lay a bet – An acceptance of a bet by a bettor to the bookie.
Lay a price – betting the favourite by laying money odds.
Laying the points – Betting the favourite by giving up points.
Layoff bet – A wager made by one bookmaker with another to help balance his action and reduces his risk on one side or one horse.
Lengthen – the movement by the linemaker of odds so that they are made longer.
Limit – the maximum amount a bookmaker will permit a bettor to wager on certain odds.
Line – Also known as betting line. The betting proposition on a game and/or payoff odds on the bet.
Listed Pitchers – A baseball bet on the pitchers that will take part in the game.
Lock – also known as banker. A certain winner.
Long odds – Odds over 1000.
Long shot – a team/competitor that is a far outsider and large underdog.
Lucky 15 – 15 bets involving 4 selections in different events (I.e. 4 singles, 6 doubles, 4 trebles and 1 fourfold).
Lucky 31 – 31 bets consisting of 5 selections in different events (I.e. 5 singles, 10 doubles, 10 trebles, 5 fourfold plus 1 five-fold).
Lucky 63 – 63 bets of 6 selections in different events (I.e. 6 singles, 15 doubles, 20 trebles, 15 four-fold, 6 five-folds, and 1 six-fold).
Mare – A (female) horse that is five years old or over.
Margin – The amount a competitor in an event finishes in front of another competitor.
Middle – To win on both sides of the same contest; by backing the underdog at one point spread and then the favourite at a different point and winning both sides.
Money line – Odds that represent what amount has to be wagered or what can be won. For example, if there is a minus sign (-) next to an amount, you have to wager that amount to win $100. If there is a plus sign (+) next to an amount, you will receive that amount for every $100 wagered.
Move the line – Also known as buying points. A bettor pays to receive half a point more in his favor on a spread point game.
Multiples – Also known as Accumulator. A multiple bet where two or more bets are chosen and all these selections must win for a payout.
NAP – A best bet of the day tip by a newspaper.
Neutral Site – An arena, stadium or pitch where neither side has home advantage.
Nickel – $500.
Nickel Line – A betting line where the juice or bookmakers edge is 5%.
No Action – A bet where no money is lost, or won.
Odds – the bookmaker’s opinion of the chance of a team or competitor winning. It is adjusted to include a profit, otherwise known as the bookmaker’s edge.
Odds against – Where the odds are greater than evens.
Odds compiler – Also known as a bookmaker. Someone that decides the price and odds of a team/competitor.
Odds on – This has a minus sign and is worked out in reverse. It is the amount a bettor has to wager to win $100.
Odds maker – a bookmaker. Someone that decides the price and odds of a team/competitor.
Off the board – This is the term for a game that a bookmaker refuses to accept any bets.
One – $100.
Out – a term for an illegal bookmaker.
Overlay – When the odds on a proposition are in favor of the bettor rather than the house.
Over – A wager on whether the combined amount of points/goals by both teams in one match will be over the priced amount.
Over-under – the opportunity to bet on the combined amount of points/goals both teams will score in the match. A bettor can choose over or under the priced amount.
Parlay – Also known as an accumulator or multiple bet. A multiple bet where two or more bets are chosen and all these selections must win for the accumulator to payout.
Past Post – to make a bet after the event has actually started. Like in-play.
Patent – 7 bets with 3 selections in different events, i.e. a single on each selection, plus 3 doubles, and 1 treble.
Payout – Also known as winnings or return. How much a bettor receives from the bookmaker after winning a bet.
Perfecta – AKA forecast or exacta. A selection of two horses to come 1st and in 2nd in a race in exact order.
Picks – a selection of bets usually chosen by an expert or knowledgeable person.
Pick ‘em – AKA pick. When neither team is favoured.
Place – to wager on the team/competitor/horse to finish in the top two, three, four or five in an event/tournament.
Point Spread – AKA handicap. The points given to the underdog to level the odds with the favourite.
Postponed – When an event is cancelled and rescheduled for a later date.
Press – the betting of an unusually large amount.
Price – AKA the odds. A price to reflect the chances of that particular team/contestant winning or placing in an event field.
Prop – A prop is short for proposition bet, which are odds set by the bookmaker on unique and various topics.
Puckline – Giving odds of a goal spread instead of using a Canadian line, which uses both a goal spread and money line.
Punter – Someone who places a bet.
Return – Your total winnings on a bet.
Reverse – When a bettor asks for a second exacta wager but this time having the two horses in reverse place order to that of the first exacta.
Round Robin – A number of parlays. A three-team round robin consists of one three-team parlay and three two-team parlays.
Run down – All the betting information and lines for a specific, date, time, etc.
Run line – Refers to baseball when a spread is used instead of a money line.
Runner – AKA a beard. This is a person that places bets on behalf of someone else in an effort to disguise the identity of the true punter.
Scalper – Someone who attempts to profit from the differences in odds from different books by betting both sides of the same game at different prices.
Scratch – When a horse is withdrawn from the race before it starts. All bets on this horse are then refunded.
Sharp – Professional gambler.
Shorten – The opposite of lengthen. See lengthen.
Side – To win one side and tie the other.
Single – Also known as a straight bet. Refers to a singular bet on one team, competitor or horse.
Single Stakes About (SSA) – A bet consisting of 2 bets on two selections (1 single on each selection any to come 1 single on the other selection reversed).
Special bet – Also known as a proposition bet -Odds set by the bookmaker on unique and various topics.
Sportsbook – The website that accepts bets.
Spread – Also known as a point spread. Referring to the points given to the underdog to level the odds with the favourite.
Stake – A wager.
Steam – refers to heavy movement on a betting line, which is usually caused by many people betting on it.
Store – Somewhere you can place a bet.
Straight bet – This is the name of a bet on just one team, competitor or horse.
Sucker bet – refers to a betting line that has a large house edge.
Super Heinz – 120 bets – 7 selections in different events consisting of 21 doubles, 35 trebles, 35 four-folds, 21 five-folds, 7 six-folds and 1 seven-fold.
Super Yankee – Another term for a Canadian. A Super Yankee is a Yankee type bet with five selections instead of four.
Tapped – to go bust.
Thick ‘un – A large bet.
Tie – A bet where no money is lost or won because the teams/competitors score and finishing place were equal to the number of points in the given line.
Tips – The selections and predictions of competitor’s performance for an event from an expert or observer.
Tipster – A person who offers tips.
Total – A sports bet for the combined amount of goals, points or runs scored by all teams in a game or event. The bettor will wager on whether the total amount will be over or under a priced amount
Trifecta – A horse racing bet on three horses to finish in the top 3 in one exact order.
Trebles – A form of parlay or accumulator, this is a triple bet on three events.
Trixie – 4 bets involving 3 selections in different events, i.e. 3 doubles plus 1 treble.
True Odds – The actual odds of something happening (as opposed to what bookmakers have offered).
Two Ball Betting – (Golf) Predicting which player from a group of two will shoot the lowest score over 18 holes.
Three ball betting – (Golf) Predicting which player from a group of three will shoot the lowest score over 18 holes.
Under – This refers to a Total bet, where the bettor wagers on whether the total amount of goals/points will be under a certain priced figure.
Underdog – An outsider, the person or team that is the least likely to win.
Underlay – When the odds favour the house.
Union Jack – A bet consisting of 8 trebles on 9 selections A to I.
Win Only – A bet on a competitor/team to win an event. This is also known as a straight bet or ‘Money Line’ betting.
Yankee – A bet of four selections, combining them into six doubles, four trebles and one fourfold.