Sports Betting 101

Sports betting is a wager on the outcome of a sporting game or event. It includes any type of bet in which a Person places cash or something of monetary value on the results or occurrences during, or in connection with, any sports game, event or contest (including motor racing and e-sports).

While traditional forms of sports betting involve individuals placing bets with each other in private or small groups, today’s legal sportsbooks offer hundreds of betting options. From the college basketball tournament informally known as March Madness to NFL Sundays, sports betting has become a part of mainstream sports culture. There are even podcasts dedicated to the subject and big-name sports broadcasters have opened their own online betting sites.

The first thing to understand about sports betting is how odds work. Odds are the numbers that determine how much you will win on a bet. They are calculated based on the probability that an occurrence will happen, which means they vary by sport and event. A team’s odds are often listed with a plus sign (+) or minus sign (-) to indicate whether they are favored or underdog.

The most common form of a sports bet is a straight bet, where you place your money on a single outcome. For example, if you think the Toronto Raptors will beat the Boston Celtics in an NBA game, you place a bet on the team to win. You can also make bets on multiple outcomes by adding bets to a parlay.