Handicaps make for more exciting betting and viewing, since even if the favourite wins they might not have covered the points deficit that they started with. However, to do well in handicap wagers across different sports, you need to know what you’re doing. That’s what the guidelines below are for.
Soccer Handicap Bets
Since Soccer is a relatively low-scoring sport, the final scores of the winners and losers are likely to be close. You need a lot of skill to predict who the winner will be in terms of handicap betting. Give yourself time to get familiar with teams before you try placing large handicap bets.
One useful trick is to track handicap performances over the current and past seasons. You’ll notice when teams develop trends for failing to cover handicaps, or when a specific bookmaker’s calculations are faulty and different sides all fail to cover their set handicaps.
Major League Baseball Handicap Bets
In Major League Baseball, or MLB, the handicap is called the Run Line. This sport is unique in that the handicap is a constant level, and is always set at +1.5 for the underdogs and -1.5 for the favourites. However, bettors can place bets on other Run Line levels in the alternate handicaps that bookies set themselves.
Whether you place regular or alternate handicaps, remember to always check the weather conditions and stadium dimensions carefully, in terms of how teams perform in different situations. Results in baseball are more affected by these factors than other sports’ outcomes are. For instance, an underdog might lose by a smaller margin if they do well in specific wind conditions.
Tennis Handicap Bets
Handicap bets in Tennis are quite unique in that there are 2 separate options available in each individual match. You can put money on a game handicap, or a match handicap. Game handicaps are calculated by the total number of games a player wins.
For instance, imagine Rafael Nadal going against Roger Federer with a -6 handicap. If the final results were 6-2, 6-4, 6-4 the total would be 18-10 and Nadal would have covered the handicap. If the first set was 6-4 instead of 6-2, the total would be 18-12 and Nadal would not have covered his handicap.
In set handicaps, you’ll be putting money on whether a player will win in sets or not. The favourite gets a deficit of -1.5 or -2.5, and the underdog gets credited with the same amount. Then, if Juan Martín del Potro is against Federer with a +1.5, he only needs to win 1 out of 3 sets. With his handicap, he’s up to 2.5 sets so anyone who backed him wins their wager.
National Football League Handicap Bets
The handicap in NFL games is usually known as the spread or the points spread, and is the most popular Football betting option and it’s more similar to NRL spreads. The points system and scoring patterns mean 7 and 3 are the most common winning margins, so look for handicaps that are close to these for your best chance at a payday.