Parlay wagers have the highest possible payouts in any sports betting site while having better odds of winning than most heavy underdog markets. Given the structure of these bets, bettors are asking how these wagers could have incredibly high pay.
We answer that question by closely examining how parlay bets work and why it has a high payout when you add more legs to them.
How Parlay Bets Work
A parlay bet consists of two or more wagers for anyone new to how this type of bet work. These wagers include money lines, spreads, totals, futures, and props. You are limited to only choosing one type of wager in one game, so your parlay will consist of legs from several matches. A parlay stake covers every leg, so you do not have to worry about putting down more money when creating 5-team wagers or higher.
Parlay with numerous legs have higher payouts. However, every portion of your bet must win to get that cash prize. You lose the entire wager if just one of the legs loses.
Note that your parlay loses when one of its legs loses, but this is not the case for a canceled match. Voided parlay legs due to canceled games will not make you lose the bet. Instead, it will reduce its payout by taking away its affected legs.
Nearly every US sports betting site lets you build parlay bets on their platforms. These sites include DraftKings, FanDuel, Caesars Casino, and BetMGM. You are free to add wagers on upcoming games as legs for parlays on these platforms. With online UK bookies, parlays are often called "bet builders."
Why Parlay Pays More
We know what parlays are, but how could this bet have higher payouts than the total of what you would get from individual bets? Risk is the answer as to why parlay pays more than traditional sports bets.
Let us imagine a parlay consisting of bets, whether you would get heads from a series of coin tosses. The odds are high that you will get two heads in a row since the chances of either outcome are 50/50. Imagine the risk of getting three or more consecutive heads in a row. Remember that all it takes for your parlay to go down is just one of its legs to lose. With the risk of tails appearing in one of your legs, parlay odds of winning diminishes as you add more coin tosses to the wager.
Of course, sports betting is more than just a coin flip. How could you lose if all of your legs are favored ones? This includes backing a strong sports team when they go up against the worst-ranking squad of the season. It can also have a -3.5 spread for the favorite. With these popular bets, your chances of winning are more than 50 percent.
Unfortunately, the outcome of a sports match tends not to turn into what most people would expect. It is not rare for an underdog to win against a favored team or player. Various natural-world factors, such as critical players' mental and physical conditions, can affect the match. Significant changes can also occur during the middle of a game that can have a negative or positive impact on the team, such as one of the players getting benched for violating the rules.
There are no guarantees when it comes to sports betting, which is why the risk is always present for each leg of a parlay. Even a three-leg parlay has a good chance of going bust, even if there are just three chances of one lost. Risk is why you get a significant cash payout if your parlay wins.
Before we put a cap on this section, it is essential to note that your parlay payout depends on the odds of your legs. Every sports bet is always tied to the odds of it winning. Adding risky wagers like underdog money lines will grant you a higher cash prize when your parlay wins. Making your parlay more difficult with low odds wager tends to result in higher payouts. To know how much a specific bet pays, you can use a parlay calculator to understand its profit potential.
Value of Parlays
Given the risks, parlays are considered money makers among UK and US sportsbooks. Even sports betting sites such as Betway offer same-game parlays to entice patrons. Is there any value to parlays of severe sports bettors?
Parlays are valuable for boosting the payouts of heavily favored markets. Let us use NBA money line odds as our example to illustrate its value. The Knicks have -130 against the Nets, and the Warriors have -120 against the Mavericks. When you bet on these two individuals, your total profit for both, with a stake of $100, is $160.28. However, a 2-team parlay with these legs will grant you a $224.36 payout with a stake of $100.
Sports parlay bets payout more because of their risk. Increasing the number of legs in a bet boosts the payout and the chances for the entire parlay to lose. Despite the risk, parlays provide value to bettors when using favored markets as their legs.
This article was published on August 25, 2022, and last updated on August 19, 2022.