The Duel
Sports Betting

What is a Moneyline Bet? How to Bet the Moneyline

By FanDuel
March Madness Viewing Party At The Westgate Las Vegas
March Madness Viewing Party At The Westgate Las Vegas / Ethan Miller/GettyImages
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Cover Photo: Getty Images

If you're new to sports betting or sports wagering, learning all of the terms, rules, and lingo could be the biggest hindrance or roadblock between you and winning. As with most things, it can be confusing to understand how everything works without knowing what everything means. 

We're here to help you understand all the basics and everything you need to know in the world of sports betting. This series of articles will address and explain all the terms you need to know and how they all work and fit into the overall landscape. 

Today we will talk about betting the moneyline. 

What is the Moneyline?

A moneyline bet is picking which team will win a game. There is no spread or line associated with this bet, although the odds and payouts will alter based on which team is the favorite or perceived better team. But at it's core, all you have to do is pick who wins. 

What Are Moneyline Odds?

As mentioned above, depending on which team is considered the favorite, that team will have worse moneyline odds or a lower payout. This is denoted in moneyline bets with a minus symbol before the number, while the underdog will be shown with a plus symbol before the number. 

How to Read Moneyline Odds:

Let's take the AFC Championship game between the Patriots and Chiefs. The Chiefs were set as 3-point favorites, therefore their moneyline odds would be a worse payout.

Moneyline odds would be displayed (-164) for the favorite and (+142) for the underdog. The odds are based on a $100 bet. So for the underdog, the team with the "+" in front of their odds means that you must wager $100 to make $142. If you were to bet the Chiefs, or the team with the "-" in front of their odds, in this situation then you would have to wager $164 in order to win $100. 

Not everyone is willing to bet $100 on a game, but the odds are set with that number to make it easily transferable whether you want to bet more or less. For this example, we will use a $10 bet. 

In this situation, a $10 moneyline bet on the Patriots would pay out $14.20. A $10 bet on the Chiefs would pay out $6.10.

So while betting the better team or the favorite might seem like an easy choice, you will receive a lesser amount in return for a winning bet. Every game has different moneyline odds and all odds are fluid and always changing, so monitoring which way it's trending might be a valuable move once you become a little more comfortable.


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David Kaestle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, David also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username davekaestle. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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