Sports Betting Glossary A-M

If you Bet on Sports or are thinking about betting on sports then you need to know sports betting terms if you want to hang with the big boys.  Knowing a sports gambling term correctly and understanding it  can mean the difference between winning a bet or losing a bet!



The ‘Accumulator’ – A cumulative bet in which the bettor picks a selection in several events or races and makes a bet on the first one; should that win the accumulated winnings become his next bet etc. Also known as ‘If win only or if win action.’

Across the Board – Primarily on horse bets where win, place and show odds are offered, betting the same amount on each result.

Action –A bet of any type is considered Action if valid, and different sports have different rules in which they determine if a bet is Action or not, for baseball bets they have action when the game exceeds 4 ½ innings.

Ran –A bet selection that does not finish 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th in an event or a race.

Ante-Post are the prices on major sports events, normally the day prior to the event, in which better odds are available.

ATC – Any to Come- A term that describes when all or a portion of one’s returns from a bet are automatically placed on another bet.

Arbitrage – A variation in odds that allows the better to bet on both sides and guarantees a winning.

Asian Handicap – A form of betting on football/soccer that originated in Indonesia and today has become one of the most popular method to be in Asia  It is a form of betting in which teams are handicapped according to their form, so that a stronger team must win by more goals for a punter betting on them to win.


Banker – A term for a bettor’s strong bet or his ‘sure thing, or an almost guaranteed winner, as if it were a lock.

Bar– The runners in a race that has no odds during the early betting, thus the bar price is the minimum odds that are available for any selection not quoted in the early betting.

Bettor – a U.S. term for whom has a bet and in Europe they are known as a Punter. Betting Tax is a tax on a bookmaker’s income. In Europe they call it Beeswax.

Blind Bet – A bet that is made by bookmaker to entice other bookmaker’s attention away from his large bets on another horse.

Book – A bookmaker’s toll of the amounts that are bet on each entry, and his odds he needs to assure he gains a profit.

Bookie Pay Per Head – A bookie Pay Per Head is a service for bookies which gives their players access to online sports betting.  In exchange for these services, the bookie pays the Sportsbook Pay Per Head providers a weekly fee for each player.  Hence the name, Pay-Per-Head.

Bookmaker – A company or person who accepts bets from the public, normally on sports events, and also known as the ‘Bookie’.

Breakage – The difference in true pari-mutuel odds and smaller rounded amounts offered to winning bettor.

Buck – A U.S. bet of $100 and known as a ‘dollar bet’ to most.

Buy Price – Relates to spread or index type betting, and is the higher odds quoted by a bookmaker or an index.

Buy the Rack – A U.S. term that indicates you bet on all daily-doubles or other combinations.


Canadian – A multiple be,t that is made up of 26 bets (10 doubles, 10 triples, 5 4-folds and 1-5-fold) with 5 picks in different events and also known as the ‘Super Yankee’.

Carpet Joint – A slang for a U.S. Luxury gambling casino.

Chalk – A bettor’s favorite.

Chalk Player – One who bets on favorites.

Circled Game – When a bookmaker places a limit on the amount they will take on an event, normally has a limit when they are doubts about key players in a game.

Close – The final odds on a horse or in Europe ‘Starting Price’.

Combination – A U.S. across the board bet in which 1 pari-mutuel ticket is given.

Cover – As in sports betting and beating the spread by a required number of points, as to ‘cover the spread’.


Daily Double – A U.S. form of pari-mutuel betting, where the bettor makes a combination bet on 2 horses in two separate races.

Dead Heat – When 2 or more competitors finish the even tied.

Dime – A U.S. term for a bet $1,000 and known as a ‘Dime Bet.’

Dog – In the U.S. is the underdog in any betting odds.

Dog Player – A U.S. Bettor who primarily bets o the underdog.

Double – A bet that consists of 2 selections and both must win for the Bet to be successful.

Doubling Up – A widely used system for a player who loses a bet, he then doubles the size of his bet hoping to win and recoup his loss.


Each-Way – A bet that is made up of 2 bets, the 1st is for the selection to win and the 2nd is for selection to place, at a proportional price depending on the odds.

Evens – When odds are 1 to 1 also know as levels.

Exacta – A form of betting where you try to pick the winner and the 2nd place horse, and buy just 1 ticket on your double pick, and is also known as a ‘perfecta.’

Exotic Wager – A U.S. term for any bet that is not a straight bet.


Favorite – The competitor in the event more likely to win and normally has the lowest odds.

Fold – A term that indicates the number of picks in an accumulator bet.

Flag – A bet that is made up of 23 bets on 4 selections in different events.

Form –  The past performances used to indicate the competitor’s chances of winning. In the U.S. it would be the ‘Daily Racing Form.’

Futures –  The odds in the U.S. offered for winners of an event in advance of the actual event.


Goliath – A multiple consisting of 247 bets (28 doubles, 56 triples, 70 4-folds, 56 5-folds, 28 6-folds, 8 7-folds and 1 8-fold) involving 8 selections in different event.


Handicap – A method used by odds makers to make a one sided event a more attractive bet.

Handicapper – A person who assigns or assesses a competitor’s handicap, especially in golf or horse racing.

Handle – A U.S. term for the total sum bet on a race, in a day or some other period of time.

Hang Cheng – A form of Soccer betting very popular in Asia as the returns on a team winning or drawing in a match are determined by part-goal handicaps.

Hedging – A bet made by a nervous bookie on a horse or event in which he has some large bets, for the reason of reduce his losses, and is also known as a ‘Lay-Off Bet.’

Heinz – A multiple bet consisting of 57 bets (15 doubles, 20 trebles, 15 4-folds, 6 5-folds and 1 6-fold) involving 6 horses in different races.

The House – The operators of a gambling center.


In the Money – A term that describes the horses in a race that finish the race 1st, 2nd and 3rd (on some occasions 4th) and/or the horses on which the track will payout to bettors.


Joint Favorites – When the bookmakers cannot separate 2 horses or team for favoritism, thus they are posted as joint favorites.

Juice – The commission paid to the bookmaker, and also known as the ‘Vig.’


Kite – The European slang word for Check.


Layer – A bookmaker or a person who ‘Lays’ odds! Lines represent Handicaps,

points-spreads – The odds offered to the bettor.

Linemaker – A person who forms or sets the opening line or subsequent lines for bettors.

Long Odds  –  Odds of winning that are offered to a competitor who is unlikely to win the event. AN example is 100-1

Lock – A term indicated an almost guaranteed winner.

Longshot – The outsider or unexpected winner, usually on which long odds were offered. Lucky 15, 31, 63 are Multiple bets on all possible combinations of 4, 5 or 6 selections.

Lucky 15 – It’s  4 selections, so 4 singles, 6 doubles, 4 trebles and 1 accumulator is equal to 15 bets.


Machines – U.S. pari-mutuel calculators/computers.

Minus Pools – A situation in pari-mutuel betting in where so much money is bet on Horse, that the funds in the pool are not sufficient to pay off the winning tickets.

Morning Lines –  A forecast of the events probable odds.

Mutuel Pool – The Total amount that has been bet to win, place or show in a race or event.

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