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Understanding Parlays

February 1, 2018

If you are a novice gambler you may have heard of a parlay. But maybe you stuck to the straight wagers just because they are simpler and you don’t want to be guessing what the rules or the payouts are on exotic plays and parlays. But, it really is a simple concept.

If you tell me that you like the Under 48 points and New England -4.5 in this upcoming Super Bowl, and you went on to say that you really liked those picks and were very confident in each side, I would say tell you to parlay them. This is the act of placing one bet (a combination of the two picks) and receiving better odds. For instance, if you placed that exact wager, NE -4.5 and Under 48 parlay for $100, it would pay out $264.46. This is using standard odds of (-110) per side and 13/5 payout for two teams standard parlay. Sound too good to be true? Well it isn’t. There is a catch. If one side of your pick loses, you lose your bet.

A betting purist would tell you stay away from any exotic wagers and parlay bets because these will lead you down the path to your etting demise. And they would be right if you are looking to make a living or take sports betting very seriously. But if you are Joe Public and you just wants some action for a max payout on the Super Bowl I say play the damned parlay.

Multiple Team Parlays

Basically, the more teams you add to your parlay string, the higher the odds increase (your odds of winning decreases). The same rule applies that if you lose just one leg of the parlay then you lose the bet. But, if you push (tie) on one of the legs of the parlay, it will automatically convert down to the next smaller sized parlay. Let’s say you have a four team parlay. You place $100 on it (4 team payout: $100 pays $1228.33). Three of the picks win and the fourth pushes (ties). Your parlay would automatically convert to a 3 team parlay and it will pay off that those odds ($100 pays $595.79).

Here are the multi-leg parlay odds based on -110 moneyline per leg (offshore sportsbooks usually pay better because of the lower overhead):

# of Teams Las Vegas Payout **Offshore Payout
2 13/5 13/5
3 6/1 6/1
4 10/1 12.28/1
5 20/1 24.35/1
6 40/1 47.41/1
7 75/1 91.42/1
8 150/1 175.44/1