What is an alternate spread? Alternate spreads are betting lines that differ from the original spread for a game. Some alternative spreads may be altered by more than ten points.
Whether you are new to sports betting or have been doing it for a long time, you have probably seen the following things happen when betting against the spread.
Assume you see a spread on a game and are torn about which side to take. Perhaps if the spread was only one or two points higher or lower in either direction, you'd feel more confident betting on it.
What if you saw a spread that appeared to be a no-brainer? You would feel comfortable betting on the same side even if the spread was vastly different. Sports bettors would be wise to take advantage of the "alternate spreads" offered by most sportsbooks in both of these scenarios.
In this article, we will define what is an alternate spread and show you how to place one in a sportsbook.
Alternate spreads have the potential for much better, or much worse, payouts than the original spread. The more points one chooses to lay on the favorite with an alternative spread, the higher the payout.
If, on the other hand, one chooses an alternate spread in which the favorite is laying fewer points than the original spread, the payout will be lower because there is less risk involved.
Here's an example of how SugarHouse Sportsbook might offer a different spread option for a game between the Eagles and the Cowboys.
The game's original spread was Dallas (-3). The (-104) represents the vig on the bet, which means a bettor must wager $104 to win $100. However, if a bettor believed the Cowboys could cover a (-11.5) point spread, a $100 bet would net them $300.
In contrast, a bettor would need to wager $1000 to win $100 if they wanted to take the underdog Eagles +16 (13 points more than the original spread).
Most sporting events with a spread will have alternate spreads available to bet on, depending on the sportsbook. Alternate spreads in basketball work much like they do in football.
In baseball and hockey, the spread is known as the "run line" or "puck line," respectively. Regardless of the teams involved, the favorite's run line or puck line is usually (-1.5).
Most sportsbooks, however, will offer other variations of these lines as alternate spreads. For example, in baseball, one could bet on the favorite laying 4.5 runs.
Because scoring in baseball and hockey is so different from scoring in other sports, the odds for their alternate spreads would change to reflect this.
If the spread is set at +7, the underdog must either win outright or lose by less than seven points to cover. The favorite must win by more than seven points to cover.
This means you can bet on New England while also receiving 7 points, or on San Francisco while also receiving 7 points. This is the pattern. The spreads on which you can bet on a game change when you use the "alternate spread," as do the odds with each associated spread.
Aside from the main pregame lines, alternate lines give bettors more options. For all major sports, there are alternative spread and total lines available. The odds for different lines will vary depending on how much they differ from the standard lines.
What is an alternate spread? When you bet on a line that differs from the official line, you are using an alternate spread. Alternate spreads are available in almost every sport where you can bet.
While the odds for each point in the NBA do not change dramatically because there are so many points scored, the odds on alternate spreads fluctuate much more when betting on sports such as hockey and professional football.