Maryland Sports Betting Odds & Lines

The first step toward figuring out how sports betting works is to come to understand how to read betting odds. All sports bets are accompanied by betting lines that outline the odds on that event and change constantly.

Maryland Sports Betting Live Feed

The odds on a sporting event are constantly changing. We will update with the latest lines from the top Maryland online sportsbooks in real-time whenever they are launched. Comparing odds will enable you to see which would offer the most lucrative total payout.

Whether you're seeking the latest odds on the NFL like the Washington Football Team to win the Super Bowl or the total for that night's Nationals regular-season game, you'll find it here.

How Do Betting Odds Work?

Three types of odds are employed in sports wagers. Fractional odds are perhaps the odds format most commonly known by the general public.

If a team is listed at 5-1 in factional odds to win the NBA championship, that means the total payout on a winning wager would be $5 for every $1 risked by a bettor.

Moneyline wager odds are generally referred to as American odds, since they are the favorite betting line employed by online sports betting sites in the USA. The favorite is indicated by a minus sign before the number, while the under is cited by a plus sign before the number.

Decimal odds are a third popular odds format that sports bettors will encounter. For instance, the sports odds might show the decimal odds on the New York Yankees as 2.50 to win the World Series. Decimal odds show the win amount paid out on every dollar wagered.

How to Read Betting Odds

American odds are based on hypothetical $100 wagers. In the case of moneyline odds, if the Washington Capitals are listed as -175 against the Montreal Canadiens at +225, this means that Montreal is the underdog. Wager $100 on the Canadiens and you'll win $175. In the case of the favored Capitals, the minus sign shows how much would be garnered via a $100 wager on Washington.

Sports Betting Odds Explained

The online sports betting odds, often referred to as the Vegas lines, will vary from sport to sport and depending upon wager types.

In sports such as college football or college basketball, where non-conference matchups can pit small schools against national powers, it's not uncommon to see a point spread of more than 30 points. In major sports leagues, where teams are more evenly matched, lines of less than three points are frequent.

The odds will change based on betting action. If there's significant money first bet on one team, oddsmakers will move the line in order to get bettors to wager on the other team, looking to level the playing field.

The latest sports news will also impact the odds. Weather conditions and injury reports are monitored by bettors before placing their bets.

Moneyline Betting

Suppose the Phoenix Suns are playing the Los Angeles Clippers in the Western Conference final for a spot in the NBA championship.

Bets lists the Suns as a -125 choice in the Vegas lines moneyline odds. Bets on the Clippers are indicated with a plus sign and will pay out at +170.

In the case of the moneyline total payout is based upon a wager of $100. In the case of the Clippers, moneyline wager bets of $100 offer a win of $175. With the Suns, the minus number is what a win will return for $100 bets on Phoenix. In this instance, sportsbooks will pay out $100 on $125 bets.

Point Spread Betting

When people place bets, oddsmakers seek to level the playing field on potential outcomes. That's why point spread betting became popular bets, especially on America's favorite sports such as pro and college football.

Suppose the Los Angeles Rams are listed as -3.5 favorites over the Washington Football Team in an NFL game. The point spread requires Los Angeles to win by more than 3.5 points in order for those who put money on the Rams to cash winning bets.

Those who bet on Washington will cash winning point spreads bets if it records an outright win or loses by less than four points.

The point spread is designed to balance money wagered between both teams. Line movement is common when initial wager amounts are skewed heavily toward one team.

Over/Under Betting

The over/under, also known as total wagering, requires players to place bets on the combined score of a sports event.

Let's say an MLB bet in Maryland between the Los Angeles Angels and New York Yankees shows a total of 8.5. That is an estimate by bookmakers on the combined score of how many runs the two teams will produce.

The over is set at odds of -107 and the under at a line of -124. In order to read betting odds on this type of wager, these American odds work the same as moneyline odds. They are lines based on how much would be won on a $100 wager. With a -107 moneyline total wager, the minus sign indicates that to achieve a $100 profit a bettor would need to wager $107.

Parlay betting

Like a trifecta or superfecta wager in horse betting, parlay wagers are plays that are longshots to come in but when they do, these sports bets are popular bets because they can produce a total payout that is quite lucrative.

Online sports betting sites recognize this possibility and play up parlay bets, even going as far as to offer MD free bets associated with parlays.

Parlay wagers combine a number of sports odds into one wager, referred to as legs. All legs must come in for parlay wagers to pay out. The more legs included in parlay bets, the higher the odds will be on the payout.

For instance, at William Hill, a three-leg parlay pays out at fractional odds of 6-1. Up those parlay wagers to six legs and the fractional odds increase to 45-1.

Live (in-game) betting

The hottest phenomenon among the best sports betting odds today is live betting. Also known as in-game or in-play wagering, as the name suggests, these are wagers placed on events occurring in real-time during the course of a game.

When betting on an NBA game between the Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Clippers, online sports betting sites will offer sports bettors numerous in-game bet options. Many of these prop bets — who will score the next basket, which player or team will score the most points in a quarter or half.

However, live bet action also features point spreads and moneyline wager odds on quarter and half outcomes. An interesting aspect of live betting is that the odds change in real-time based upon the action in the game.

Why do sports betting lines change?

From the moment the online sports betting odds are first established until the game starts, the betting lines can and often will change.

Point spreads can move if there is significant wagering on one team, as online sports betting sites seek to balance the books so they won't take a financial bath if that team wins.

If something happens to impact a sporting event, it will also impact the odds. This could be a key player being injured or benched, or in the case of outdoor sports such as football, baseball and soccer, a change in the weather forecast.

When are sports betting lines released?

The betting action in terms of when the odds are posted varies from sport to sport. In the case of the NFL, in which teams play once per week, odds for the next game are generally posted once the two competing teams complete their previous game.

For sports such as hockey and basketball, which play 3-4 times per week and baseball, with games almost every day, odds are generally up by the morning of the game.

Why Are Odds Important In Sports Betting?

The purpose of sports betting odds is to give those who bet on the underdog as equal a chance as possible to win a bet as those who play favorites.

Odds are important because they identify to bettors which team or player is the favorite and which is the underdog.

The odds also outline the payouts on a winning wager on the level of risk involved with each type of wager.

How To Calculate Sports Betting Payouts

Odds are used to calculate the implied probability of potential outcomes when players wager on their favorite sports. Understanding how odds work and pay out on a successful wager will make it easier for you to place a bet.

Negative Odds Payouts

In an NHL game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Montreal Canadiens, the Vegas lines show the Lightning listed as the -175 favorites in the American odds format. The minus sign indicates negative odds. In this case, the -175 moneyline total means that a bet would need to be a wager of $175 in order to realize a $100 profit. Of course, that's only paid out in the Lightning win the game.

Positive Odds Payouts

On the same NHL game, the Canadiens are +225 in an American odds moneyline wager. The Canadiens offer the most value. A win on a Montreal bet would return a $225 profit on a $100 wager. However, Montreal is also the underdog, so there is more risk involved in placing a hockey wager in MD on the Canadiens.

Sportsbooks and Betting Odds

A study of a cross-section of sports betting sites will display that whether it be a moneyline wager or a point spread bet, often the odds at one betting house will be slightly different than another. The same can also be seen in future book odds. One site might have the Phoenix Suns as +325 to win the NBA championship. Another might post odds of +350 on a wager on the Suns to win the title.

There are a variety of reasons why this is so. One sportsbook's vigorish — the profit that the betting house takes off the top — could be higher than another. Smaller betting sites might have less profit margin and therefore need a high vig. New betting houses may post better odds, willing to take a short-term loss to attract players and build up a customer base.

Comparing Maryland Betting Odds With Vegas Betting Odds

Maryland is poised to become the next U.S. state to legalize sports betting. It is expected to pass sports betting regulations sometime in July of 2021. Once that step is approved, application deadlines and the licensing process for online sportsbooks will be established.

Expect that Maryland's sports betting program will be similar to that of Las Vegas and several other states like Pennsylvania and New Jersey. A number of online sports betting sites will be battling for the Maryland market. That should lead to some very competitive odds to place bets.

Other Betting Odds

Futures betting

Futures betting is the type of wager that can reward a patient player handsomely. There are a number of anecdotal stories of a winning bet on a longshot championship winner coming in and paying hundreds of thousands of dollars.

A futures bet is a wager on a long-term outcome. It could be a bet on the Los Angeles Clippers to win the NBA championship. Say the Clippers are +600 to win the title. That's the same as fractional odds of 6-1. A $100 bet will win a $600 profit.

These bets can also be made on which players will win awards. The bets offer a solid return on investment. However, they require a long wait before winning bets can be cashed.

Prop betting

Prop bets were born in Super Bowl XX, when everything but the kitchen sink was bet on the Fridge to score a touchdown. Seizing on the popularity of Chicago Bears defensive tackle William (The Refrigerator) Perry, a 300-pounder who played in the backfield on short-yardage downs, a prop bet was offered on whether he'd score a TD (he did). The bet proved so popular that the prop bet phenomenon went mainstream.

Today, wagering on Super Bowl props is a multi-million dollar cottage industry. Prop bets are a huge part of everyday sports wagers. A wager on a player rushing for 100 yards in a game is a common NFL prop. Naturally, the odds will be lower on a feature back on a run-first team doing so than a back on a team that prefers a passing attack.

Live (in-game) betting

The arrival of the mobile device and the mobile betting app combined to create a passion for in-game betting. These live bets are like the fast food of sports betting. They can change at a moment's notice.

The Phoenix Suns might open as -150 favorites over the Los Angeles Clippers. However, if the Clippers are up by 13 points in the fourth quarter, in-game betting will now list them as the betting favorite.

Teaser/pleaser betting

A teaser is a bet that on the surface appears similar to parlay wagers. The main difference between teaser and parlay wagers is that players may alter point spreads and totals between 4-10 points. While this increases the chances of a win, it reduces the payout and still requires multiple wager types to come in successfully.

For instance, if a two-team teaser where the Washington Wizards are +3 against the Phoenix Suns and the Washington Football Team is +3 against the Dallas Cowboys to give both underdogs lines of +9, a $100 play on this parlay would pay $83.50. At the original odds, the same parlay would pay $277.70 on a $100 bet.

Why Should You Shop Sports Betting Lines

Before you go grocery shopping, do you scour the ads from the supermarkets, seeking value and the best bang for your buck? Well, should do the same when betting on sports. Line shopping is always a good strategy.

An NFL bet on Washington to beat Philadelphia might list Washington as 3-point favorites. Another site might put the Eagles as 3.5-point favorites in the game. It's only a half-point. Regardless, it can be huge. If you bet Washington and the Football Team loses 20-17, Washington +3 won't pay. However, Washington +3.5 will be a wager that's a win thanks to that half-point.

Betting Odds FAQ

The odds are designed to serve two main purposes. Sportsbooks use the odds to reflect the chances of a particular outcome actually occurring. The more likely the outcome is to happen, the shorter the odds will be. Secondly, the odds determine for bettors what the total payout will be on any bet.

An odds compiler, also known as an odds trader, is tasked with setting odds for a bookmaker.

A betting line can be moved by significant action on one side of the wager. Oddsmakers will seek to balance the account on the game by adjusting the odds enough to encourage bettors to wager on the other outcome. Aspects such as injuries and weather can also impact the odds.

While it's not advisable to wager on a team with severe negative odds — the payout doesn't warrant the risk — betting on a short favorite isn't bad strategy.

All sports will offer competitive odds. Rather than ask which sport has the best odds, the better question is which sport do you know best? Knowledge is king in sports betting. Writers write what they know. Bettors bet what they know.

Actually, since sports betting will be entirely new to Maryland, expect that the local sportsbooks will offer extremely competitive odds. Many are going to be willing to take an initial loss in order to attract new players and garner a client base.

In a recent England-Canada international rugby match, the English were -100,000 favorites. Although it was a virtual certainty England would win (they routed Canada 70-14), a $100 bet would've created a profit of 10 cents. That's a fool's bet. On the other hand, a $100 bet on a -115 favorite would return an $86.96 profit on a winning wager.

Contributors

Bob Duff

Reviewer since June 2021

A veteran journalist, Bob Duff has covered the gambling and sports betting industry since 2016. He has written more than two dozen books, including authorized biographies of Johnny Bower, Desmond Howard and Gordie Howe. Duff has covered the Super Bowl, World Series, World Cup, Stanley Cup Final, NBA Finals, March Madness and the Olympic Games. He has won multiple writing awards.

Interests: Sports betting, Sports betting legislation