How To Read Point Spread

Sportsprediction Guide To Read Point Spread
Written by, Jacob Cook Mon 08 Feb
Sportsprediction Guide To Read Point Spread
Sportsprediction Guide To Read Point Spread

How To Read Point Spread

Handicap bets are betting markets where we grant a particular advantage or disadvantage to a team. One version of the handicap is the spread, a pervasive market in Anglo-Saxon bets. Usually, we find that between two teams playing a match, one has a better chance of winning the game. Sportsbooks assign these advantages or disadvantages to groups seeking to equalize the winning odds for each team, allowing bookies to offer better odds than those offered to the match-winner. This advantage or disadvantage is what we call "point spread" or "spread." Depending on the difference between the two contestants, this will be higher or lower. This allows us to develop a strategy to cover the spread.

Reading The Point Spread

Here's an example of a point margin in the NBA:

Dallas Mavericks -7 vs. Phoenix Suns +7

The favorite team will likely win the match. So, to even out both teams' chances, the favorite must "concede" or "give" points to the weaker team. The favorite is displayed with a minus sign (-) along with the number of points it must surpass. In the example above, the Dallas Mavericks must not only win the game. They must win with a 7 point advantage or higher for those who bet on the Mavs to win. In that case, these bettors would have a winning "Against The Spread" result. From this expression comes the term "ATS", widely used in the betting jargon in North American sports.

On the other hand, someone who bets on the Suns will win if that team wins by any number of points or loses by less than 7 points. It also can happen that the difference between the teams' final scores coincides with the assigned spread. This can occur, for example, if Dallas wins by a score of 118-111. Bookies call to this "push" or "no action". In this case, the bookie returns the money bet. The point spread value will always be the same in magnitude for both teams. The difference is that the spread will be either a help or compensation for those who bet on the dog. While for the favorite, this will represent a disadvantage to overcome. Usually, bookmakers set point spreads with odds of -110, but these change often. If the odds are set at -110, then to win $ 100, you have to bet $ 110.


Point spread betting is a viral technique among professionals. Well-informed punters tend to earn big money through this type of bet. Betting on the point spread is ideal for specialists in betting on a particular sport because the better informed a bettor is, the more accurate his forecast and the higher his winnings can be. The betting markets in which the point spread is applied are numerous and vary depending on the sportsbook. However, it is fundamental that the event has a measurable result. Betting on point spread can increase the gambling excitement, as even bets on underdogs have a real chance to win.

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