What is a Parlay?

What is a Parlay?

Parlays

With recent legalization in the United States, sports gambling has received heightened attention from thousands of would be bettors who previously didn’t have access to the ability to gamble or at least didn’t realize it.  The move by the Supreme Court has led to many questions for the US general public.  One of the most common questions we receive is, “what is a parlay.”

Parlay is defined as a verb in the dictionary.  It means to “turn an initial stake or winnings from a previous bet into (a greater amount)by gambling.

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How a Parlay Works

A parlay is a standard practice in betting that combines multiple bets into one.  If all of the wagers on the bet win, an increased payout is received for the player. It’s one of the more popular options for sports bettors because it multiplies odds and makes payouts larger and more like normal casino jackpots in other games.

Normally we are offered a multitude of things to bet on in a sportsbook and we do so individually.  We can bet on the over/under point total in a game where a mark is set for overall combined points score.  We can bet on the moneyline where straight odds are given for a favorite or an underdog.  We can even bet on the point spread which is a +/- addition to the point total intended to level the competition of two teams.  Our bets are reliant on the sole outcome of the bet itself and nothing else.

A parlay combines all of these single bets into one large bet where every situation or single bet needs to hit to win the wager.  The average odds at the sportsbook for a two-selection parlay that wins is +250. Three team winners typically see +600 for odds.  That means that if you bet two teams and they both win, you’ll receive a 2.5 to 1 payout on your initial bet.  For a three-team winning wager, you’ll receive a 6 to 1 payout.  These odds can increase, and decrease based on the “favorite” level of a bet.

Benefits of Parlays

Parlays are popular because if you hit one, you can get rich quickly.  By combining 5 picks like we did on this day in the World Cup, a simple $10 bet could have paid us over $4500 dollars.  Pretty amazing!  If you hit that, you have a story for life and a life changing amount of money.

Disadvantages of Parlays

Parlays can suck because they give you a feeling of winning something big.  Often that feeling can slip away in heartbreaking fashion.  That can be tough as a bettor, especially if we want to use the money for something.

Remember, the odds of parlays are intended to be long for a reason.  It’s supposed to be HARD to pick multiple games correctly in a row even though it may seem otherwise sometimes.  Not everyone can be our Lazybets baseball picks team.

Don’t be upset if you lose a parlay in the end on something silly.  It hurts, but it’s part of the deal.  It’s why you’re getting the odds that you are.  Variance is involved with any bet, especially in something like sport where mental concentration and physics are involved and combine with statistics.  By combining so many different games or facets of games, we leave a lot to chance and increase the variability of numbers.

Parlay Conclusions

Parlay wins are lucky, especially if you nail one past three games, but they’re part of the reason we love this thing called sports “gambling.”  You can bet all day at the best of levels and net yourself an income, especially a secondary one.  The best of bettors nail about 60% of their wagers.  That means that most of the public is still trying to get lucky.  You best be throwing a parlay in occasionally, to maximize your own variance as a lucky bettor (we all are sometimes)!

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