Why does a point spread sopmetimes have half a point?
How can one team be favored by 81/2 points,for example?
- Melkam DirsetLv 41 decade agoFavorite Answer
It is the result of a difference of opinion. Suppose there are two
line-makers. One says the spread should be 8 and the other says that it should be 9. The decision will be to make it 8.5.
A spread with half point is useful to avoid a PUSH. A PUSH is when a betting is unresolved, and so the money is returned to the bettors. This happens when the outcome of the game exactly matches the spread.
For example, if the spread of a match between two teams 8, and if, in the final result, the winning margin is exactly 8, then neither the bettors who betted on 'over 8', nor those who betted on 'under 8' will win. Therefore, the bets will be returned to the respective bettors. However, if the spread were 8.5, then those who betted it to be 'under 8.5' will win, those who betted on 'over 8.5' will lose, thus a PUSH can never happen.
- 1 decade ago
The point spread actually has little to do with the score of the game. The point spread is just a point where the people who are taking bets will have as close to 50% of the amount bet on each side. This way no matter what the outcome is the people taking the bets dont lose.
For example if the consensus is that New Orleans will beat Dallas by 3 points then the odds makers will set the line at 3. If a lot of people start betting on Dallas then the oddsmakers will decrease the line to make the bet less attractive to the Dallas side. If they decrease it too much then a lot of people will start betting on New Orleans. In the long run if setting the line at 3 puts too much money on one side and setting it at 2 puts too much money on the other side then the line is set at 2 1/2 to even out the betting equation.
- Anonymous1 decade ago
The casinos want to balance the money bet on either team.
They aren't interested in predicting the score.
They just want to predict what everyone else will think.
For example, when the Saints played the Redskins, the Saints were 9 1/2 point favorites.
Final score: Redskins 16 - Saints 10.
For the gamblers, that's Redskins 16 + 9 1/2 (25 1/2)-- Saints 10.
The casino missed their prediction, but since half the money was bet on the Saints and the other half on the Redskins, the casino doesn't care one bit about the actual result of the game.
- closetcoon_fanLv 51 decade ago
The half point is to guarantee that there won't be a tie. If you are favored by 7 points and win by 7 then it is a tie.
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- xLv 41 decade ago
It just sets the boundary between winning and losing. Nine points the favorite covers, eight points the favorite does not. Obviously you cannot score half a point.
- BigfootLv 71 decade ago
Just a way to avoid tying the spread. This way there is no ambiguity, you either win your bet or you lose it.