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Sports Betting Terms

ACTION A bet or wager of any kind is deemed Action if valid
  AJAX UK slang term for 'Betting Tax'.
  ARBITRAGE Where a variation in odds available allows a punter to back both sides and guarantee a win.
  ATS Against the spread
  B.R. Bankroll
  BAD BEAT Tough loss
  BEARD Messenger bettor
  BEEF Dispute
  BETTOR US) - Someone who places or has a bet. 
UK) A 'Punter'.
  BUCK $100
  CHALK Favorite
  CHALK EATER Favorite bettor
  CHURN The effect of betting and re-betting money
  CIRCLE GAME Game where action is limited due to uncertainties about weather, injuries, etc.
  COVER Win by more than the point spread
  DEGENERATE Compulsive gambler
  DIME $1,000
  DOLLAR $100
  EARN Practical hold percentage
  EDGE Advantage
  EXOTIC BET Action other than a straight bet or parlay.
  EXPOSURE The amount of money the house actually stands to lose on a game or a race.
  EXTENSION The amount of money the house theoretically will risk losing on a game or a race.
  FIGURE Amount owed by or to a bookmaker.
  FIRING Betting a lot. A player who is "firing" is wagering large sums.
  FIXED ODDS Your dividend is fixed at the odds when you placed your bet. No matter how much the odds fluctuate the odds at the time you placed your bet are fixed and written on the ticket. Your dividend for winning is paid at the value stated on your ticket, no matter what happens after you have placed your bet.
  FLEA An annoying human parasite who wants something for nothing; a $2 bettor who expects to be rewarded for his action.
  FORM What performance is to be expected according to how a team looks on paper.
  GET DOWN Make a bet
  GROSS WIN Win before expenses
  HANDICAPPER One who studies sports and predicts outcomes.
  HANDLE Total amount of bets taken.
  HEDGE Bet the opposite of your original wager in order to reduce the amount of action you have on a game.
  HOLD The percentage the house wins.
  HOOK Half point in pointspreads, as in "lost by the hook."
  HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE Edge the home team is expected to have as a result of familiarity with the playing area, favorable demographics and effect of travel on the visiting team.
  HOOPS Basketball
  HOT TIP Information the bookmaker is not yet privy to.
  JUICE Bookmaker's commission, most often refers to the 11 to 10 football bettors lay on straight wagers; vigorish.
  LAY A PRICE Bet a favorite, lay the 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.
  LIMIT Maximum bet accepted by the house before the price will be changed.
  LINE The betting proposition on a game and/or payoff odds on the bet.
  LONGSHOT Large underdog
  LUCKY 15 A Lucky 15 consists of 15 bets involving 4 selections in different events, i.e. 4 singles, 6 doubles, 4 trebles, and 1 fourfold. As a consolation if you only have one winner it will be paid at double the odds. If you get all four winners, a 10% bonus will be added to your returns.
  MIDDLE To win both sides of a game. For example, if you bet the underdog +3 1/2 and the favorite - 2 1/2 and the favorite wins by 3, you've MIDDLED the book. The book has BEEN MIDDLED.
  MLB Major League Baseball.
  NBA National Basketball Association.
  NCCA National Collegiate Athletic Association.
  NFL National Football League.
  NHL National Hockey League.
  NEUTRAL SITE Arena, court or field where neither side has a home field advantage.
  NICKEL $500
  ODDS The sportsbook's or bookmaker's view of the chance of a competitor winning (adjusted to include a profit).
  ODDS-AGAINST Where the odds are greater than evens (e.g. 5 to 2).
  ODDSMAKER A person who sets the betting odds. (Sportsbooks or Bookies don't set the odds. Most major sportsbooks use odds set by Las Vegas oddsmakers.)
  OFF THE BOARD Game where no bets are being accepted.
  OUT Bookmaker, usually refers to an illegal bookmaker.
  OVERLAY When the odds on a proposition are in favor of the bettor rather than the house.
     
  PARLAY A bet with two or more teams where all the teams must win for the bettor to be successful.
  PAST POST To make a bet after an event has started.
  PICK OR PICK'EM A game where neither team is favored.
  PLAYER Bettor, gambler.
  PRACTICAL HOLD PERCENTAGE The amount won by a bookmaker divided by the total amount booked.
  PRESS To bet a larger amount than usual.
  PRICE Line
  PUPPY Underdog
  PUSH Tie
  ROUND ROBIN A series of parlays. A three-team round robin consists of one three-team parlay and three two-team parlays.
  RUNDOWN Line update
  RUNNER See Beard
  SCALPER One who attempts to profit from the differences in odds from book to book by betting both sides of the same game at different prices.
  SCORE To win a lot of money.
  SCRATCH Withdraw; cancel
  SHARP Wise guy
  SHORTSTOP A small bettor.
  SIDE To win one side and tie the other. For example, if you lay -2 1/2 and take 3 on the same game and the favorite wins by 3 you have SIDED the book. The book has been SIDED.
  SQUARE Unsophisticated gambler.
  STEAM Heavy action on one side.
  STRAIGHT BET A bet on just one team.
  SUCKER BET Bet with a large house edge.
  SUPPER BOWL NFL Championship game.
  TAKE A PRICE Bet the underdog, take the points.
  TAPPED OUT Broke, busted, common result of pressing.
  THEORETICAL HOLD PERCENTAGE The edge the bookmaker would have IF the odds guaranteed him a constant commission regardless of the outcome.
  TOKE A tip or gratuity.
  TOSS UP Game where the line is close to pick-em.
  TOUT SERVICE A business that sells opinions on sporting events.
  TRIPLE SHARP The sharpest of the sharp. (Note: There is no such term as "Double Sharp").
  TRUE ODDS The real odds of something happening as opposed to what the bookies offer.
  UNDERLAY When the odds on a proposition are in favor of the house.
  VALUE An overlay
  WBA World Boxing Association.
  WBC World Boxing Council.
  VIGORISH See Juice
  WISE GUY Established and successful sports bettor.
  WORLD SERIES Championship of Major League Baseball (MLB). The final seven games of the baseball playoffs between the two league champions to determine the world champion.

 

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