Live Odds

What are Live Odds?

In sports betting, live odds are odds which update in the build-up to an event and also while the event plays out. Players who are losing on one bet can take another to cancel out their loss and to make the most of the new situation.

Live odds are common in sports betting, and are available throughout the game and very close to the final seconds, outs.

Which Sports are the most popular for Live Odds?

  • NFL
  • NBA
  • College Football
  • College Basketball
  • MLB
  • NHL

Live Odds Definition Explained

A popular form of sports betting in the United State is Live Odds or what many also call In-Game Wagering.

Sports betting involves wagering a cash stake against a particular outcome in a sporting event, such as a team winning or a number of goals being scored, and if their prediction is correct they receive a return on their stake.

This return is based on the 'odds' given for that bet - the chance of an outcome happening, weighted against the need to attract bets and also the bookmaker's cut.

'Live odds' are the odds given by a bookmaker on an outcome available for wagers during a game, as opposed to before it. The term is also applied loosely to any odds betting that is not fixed - that is, where the odds on the bet posted can fluctuate during the period that the bet is 'live'.

Usually seen NFL or College Football games, live odds betting is the option of placing bets while the match is ongoing. Certain events in a game can drastically change the result, and a player who has a losing bet or who has not yet placed a bet might want to take a chance on a live odds bet.

Live odds are offered by a number of bookmakers during the days of the game, and these posted odds are updated as different factors affect the ongoing game.

How to Read Live Odds

At a legal sportsbook in the US of choice, you’d see a spread laid out like this before kickoff:

Chiefs -1.5
49ers +1.5

Before the game, the Chiefs would need to win by two points to cover the spread while the 49ers would need to win outright or lose by one to cover. However, after five minutes of play, the Chiefs have scored a touchdown and the 49ers have done absolutely nothing.

At this point, the live point spread might look like this:

Chiefs -9
49ers +9

Online bookmakers see that a team is leading and will alter the spread to reflect that. When the fave gets down early in the first quarter, the line will shrink in favor of the underdog. Sometimes a favorite could even turn into a dog in live betting situations depending on the opening line.

Other live odds opportunities are totals that are adjusted within the game depending on the amount of scoring. If there is little to no scoring in the first and second quarter, a total that closed at 43 before the game might be offered later at 31 since a lower score is now projected.

One of the more profitable live betting spots is the moneyline. If a team goes down big, you might be able to get them at good odds to complete a comeback. A good example of this strategy working was at Super Bowl 51 when the Patriots went down 28-3 against the Falcons only to come back and win the game in overtime.

New England was being offered at better than +1000 (10/1) on the live moneyline at sportsbooks just after Atlanta went up 28-3 and many opportunistic bettors cashed in big.

Live Odds Wagering Tips

Unlike regular betting odds that remain somewhat the same (minus line movements), in-play odds go fast. If you see action you like, take it before it disappears. There is a limited window for live odds and you have to jump on lines quickly because they don’t last long.

If your pre-game bets aren’t hitting, live wagering gives you the chance to middle or hedge your bets. This is essentially a way to recoup your losses and break even.

If you can predict a player’s momentum, especially in baseball, you can see success with live betting. On the diamond, timing is everything (even though the game takes ages to progress).

While sportsbooks have the help of computer algorithms working for them when they set live lines, they don’t take the human element into consideration. By watching the action closely and seeing which players are getting hot and which ones are cooling down, you can gain an edge and possibly beat the book.