What is Parlay in Sports Betting?

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Today we have arranged for you an overview of parlay betting and two well-known betting strategies for parlay that are in demand among bettors.

So, in our article we’re going to discuss such game systems as Under/Over and Odd/Even parlays. 

What is Parlay bet?

In the world of betting, the term “parlay” means a combined bet of several (2 or more) single bets, each of which is responsible for the “passing” of the bet. The loss of at least one of the outcomes will result in the loss of the whole bet, so each of the events must end in a win or a return.

The odds of a parlay bet are derived from the odds of each event multiplied together. The odds of a returned event are taken into account as “1.0”. If all events in parlay have been returned, then the parlay itself is calculated at odds of “1.0”.

How to calculate the odds in Parlay bet

It’s time to understand, what are parlays in betting on practice. For the experiment, let’s take 3 events from the EPL (England Premier League):

  1. “West Ham United — Brentford”: “Both Teams To Score” for “1.58”.
  2. “Manchester United — Everton: “MU win” at odds of “1.75”.
  3. “Sheffield United — Arsenal: “TO 3” for “1.55”.

It turns out that the total odds for this parlay bet are: 1.58 x 1.75 x 1.55 = 4.285. With a bet of $100 we will get $428.5 or $328.5 of net profit. Let’s calculate the betting expression by reviewing all possible variants:

  1. All 3 bets wim: We get a net profit of 328.5 USD.
  2. The first 2 outcomes wins but in the match “Sheffield United — Arsenal” there is a return (3 goals scored): In this case, the total odds of the expression changes to 2.765 (1.58 x 1.75 x 1.0), accordingly, and the net profit will be only 176.5 USD.
  3. At least one of the bets lost. In this case our Parlay bet is considered lost and the placed money is “burnt”.

The main Pros and Cons of Parlay betting

One of the main pros of Parlay bets – higher possible profitability in comparison with single bets. Eg., if the bettor in the above-mentioned example place 100$ on each of the outcomes of the parlay separately, he can get significantly less profit: (1.55 x 100) + (1.75 x 100) + (1.58 x 100) = $488 or $188 of net profit (3 bets of $100 were made). 

On the other hand, the risk of losing all the money in case of parlay bets is much higher. To effectively use it, the bettor should carefully analyze the selected betting sports events and accurately guess their result.

Due to the fact of the high risks, punter prefers to operate with positive ev betting, which also requires events analysis, but ensures tangible profit in the long run.

You might be interested in: what is positive ev betting

There are specialized ev betting services, which help punters to operate with such bets. The main aim of their work is to gather information about existing positive ev bets from thousands of bookmaker lines and provide their list to the customers. 

The leader in this niche is BetBurger: the service scans lines of more than 300 bookies in 43 sports and 220 markets, and has all the necessary features for comfort operation with the strategy.  

To sum up

Nowadays, parlay bets are quite popular among bettors due to the higher potential profitability as of single bets. However, if you can carefully analyze sports events and guess their result – it’s better to pay attention to positive ev betting, which can really bring profit in the long run.

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