What does dime mean in sports betting?

by Big Al Staff

What does dime mean in sports betting?

You can downplay its importance, but money is what makes the world go around.  It's not only an indispensable part of the way our economy works, but it also can determine how one views other people, and even one’s self.  Many people will respect anyone who successfully managed to work his way up to earn a lot of money.  Of course, it's a struggle to work your way up, but once you're there, it can be even harder to remain in that place.

Although people will say money can’t bring you happiness, or buy you love, it surely does bring freedom to those who have it.  And it also allows you to take on more risk than you would be able to if you were without.  In the sports betting world, the ability to take more risk often translates to betting more money on a game.  Where some gamblers would be hesitant to bet more than $100 on a game, others are high rollers, and will bet $1,000 (or more) on a game.  

Interestingly, the lingo associated with various betting amounts is not literal.  Indeed, when a gambler wants $100 on a game, he’ll say ‘Give me a dollar on the Celtics.”  And if he wants $500, then he’ll say, ‘Give me a nickel on the Cowboys.”  But if he’s really going to open up his wallet, he’ll bet $1,000 on a game, and that’s called ‘a dime.’  Some sportsbooks have even incorporated this gambling term into their name.  For example, our #1-rated sportsbook is BetAnySports, whose sister sportsbook is called 5Dimes.  So, its name literally means $5,000 in the sports gambling world.  

It's an exclusive group of bettors that can set a dime as their betting unit since most bettors wager much smaller amounts of money.  It's a pain to lose such an amount, of course, but the upside is very high.  In this betting guide, we'll dive into the world of dime bettors and a good strategy which is sustainable compared to other sports betting strategies.  Then, we'll delve into several other sports betting terms and provide you with some tips on how to attain success.

Is dime betting a good sports betting strategy?

When we get to the actual betting part, it's hard for many to grasp that bettors will wager $1,000 every single bet.  Nonetheless, it's a rarefied group of people who have the privilege of having a big enough bankroll to allow these dime bets.  The key, of course, is understanding what your bankroll size is, and not overextending yourself on a single wager.  In general, professionals will wager between 1% and 3% of their bankroll on a game.  Thus, the proper management of your bankroll is one of the essential elements of dime betting.

We only recommend betting a dime (or more) on a game if it fits within your bankroll, and you’ve done proper research on the particular sports even which is the subject of your bet.  Even if you’re wealthy, a dime is a lot of money when you're uncertain about the outcome of a game, or if you haven’t done the right amount of research.  The best strategy is to analyze the games carefully and, when you genuinely find value, step out with a major wager.  So, it's an excellent choice to make a dime bet when your research has shown that the Bill Belichick-coached Patriots are excellent off a loss, and they were blown out the previous week.  But to bet a dime on a game, willy-nilly, without a well-founded reason, is simply out of bounds and reckless.  In those instances, it's better to stay on the sidelines, and protect your bankroll.

What's the difference between a dime bet and a dime line?
There's another sports betting term that you might confuse with a dime bet, and that’s the ‘dime line.’   Sportsbooks generally will have either a dime line or a twenty-cent line, and the terms refer to the amount of spread between the numbers (which determines a sportsbook’s profit).  A dime line will refer to moneyline odds with a 10-cent straddle, while a twenty-cent line will refer to moneyline odds with a 20-cent straddle.  Let’s illustrate these two options with examples.  In Game 7 of the 2019 World Series, the Washington Nationals played the Houston Astros.  The pitching match-up was Max Scherzer vs. Zack Greinke.  And the Astros’ odds were -133 at BetAnySports, while the Nationals’ odds were +123.  There was a 10-cent difference between the two numbers, so BetAnySports dealt a dime line on the game.  Now, let’s compare this to the odds for that Game 7 at the Mirage Casino in Las Vegas.  The Mirage made the Astros a -155 favorite, while its odds on the Nationals were +135.  There was a 20-cent difference between the numbers, so that casino had a 20-cent line.  Obviously, a 10-cent line is much more favorable to bettors than a 20-cent line, because there’s less profit for a sportsbook.  

In football and basketball, it’s standard for sportsbooks to make each team’s odds -110.  Such odds are an example of a twenty-cent line, as -10 x 2 equals -20.  But some sportsbooks, like BetAnySports, offer reduced juice on football and basketball games, and make each team -105.  Those odds would be a dime line, as -5 x 2 equals -10.  One of the reasons why BetAnySports is our #1-rated sportsbook is that it offers a dime line (i.e., -105 odds) on football and basketball games, unlike most other sportsbooks which make each team -110.

So keep in mind that a dime line refers to odds, while a dime wager refers to the bet size.  It doesn't matter whether you're betting the moneyline, over/under, parlays, teasers, prop bets, or point spread, as long as your bet is $1,000, you're betting a dime.
<h3>What other bet sizes are there?</h3>
Of course, the dime bet is not the only sports betting lingo employed to refer to wagering amounts.  There are many other terms bettors use.  We'll give you a little overview here with the most common terms:

  • Buck or Dollar:  ​​​​Refers to a $100 wager in the United States.  It's a very common wagering amount, in part because moneyline odds are based on the assumption the bettor wagers $100.
  • Limit:  When you ‘bet the limit,’ you’re wagering the maximum bet size a sportsbook allows.  Not every sportsbook has the same betting maximums.  Some only allow $500, while others, like BookMaker, will take $50,000 on an NFL side (BookMaker is the sportsbook of choice for real high rollers).
  • Nickel:  Lingo for a $500 bet.

How to find the right sportsbooks for dime betting
The sports betting industry is very competitive.  There are many online betting sites worldwide.  As a bettor, you have choices, so it’s wise to review the pros and cons of each sportsbook.  And whether you’re betting dollars, nickels, or dimes, the most important factor is a sportsbook’s odds.  One of the reasons BetAnySports is atop our Top 10 Sportsbook rankings is that it offers reduced juice -- that is, -105 odds on football and basketball games, rather than -110 odds.  Reduced juice translates to less profit for the sportsbook, and greater profit for the bettor.  And if you are betting nickels and dimes, that extra profit adds up fast.

Besides the vigorish, there are other factors to take into consideration when you choose your sportsbooks.  And, take note, we used the plural of sportsbook since all sports bettors should play with at least three sportsbooks in order to shop the lines to get the best number.  One crucial criterion when looking at sportsbooks is its maximum bet size.  Many smaller bookies don't allow any bets above $1,000, while other books -- like BookMaker -- have much larger betting limits.  So always check a sportsbook’s limits.  Another important consideration is a sportsbook’s sign-up and reload bonus because, after all, who wants to turn down free money.  In our review of sportsbooks, BetNow has the best sign-up and reload bonuses, and currently ranks as our #2-rated sportsbook, overall.  Finally, an important concern for many is that the sportsbook has a very modern user interface to make the placement of bets fast and easy.  If that’s important to you, then Bovada and MyBookie are the top two choices.

What other sports betting terms should you know?

The sports betting world is filled with colorful characters, of course, and also interesting lingo.  Bettors are people who like to live fast and talk fast, so they’ll often use abbreviations or gambling slang that only other gamblers will understand.  Here, we created a list with some of the betting terms that you should know when you want to take a deep dive into the industry.

  • ATS - against the spread:  A term used in point spread betting.  If a team successfully covers the spread, they're 1-0 ATS.  You will often see this statistic in a display of a team’s season ATS record-to-date.
  • ​SU - straight-up:  A moneyline wager where you pick the team which will win the game.  The team which wins is said to win the game, straight-up.
  • ​Cover:  In point spread wagering, when a team wins after the point spread is applied, then it covers the spread.
  • Edge:  Having an edge is having an 'advantage.’  You can have an edge over a sportsbook or another player.  An example would be if you bet at the opening number of +6, and the closing line was +3.
  • Half-point:  In setting point spreads, oddsmakers utilize both whole numbers (like 6) and half-numbers (like 6.5).  Half-points refer to such half-numbers, and when adjusting the odds on a game, the numbers often move up or down in half-point increments.
  • Run-line:  In baseball, because there are runs (and not points) scored, the spread wager is referred to as a run-line wager (rather than a point spread bet).  Unlike football and basketball point spreads, which will move a lot, the run-line is baseball is typically fixed at +/- 1.5 runs.  When oddsmakers need to adjust the odds, rather than changing the run-line, they’ll change the associated moneyline odds instead.
  • Puck-line:  This is the term for a spread wager in hockey, and operates similar to a run line in baseball.
  • Handicapper:  In sports betting we refer to handicapping as the method to calculate a team’s scoring advantage (or disadvantage).  Handicappers do so in order to project by how much a team might win (or lose).  Professional handicappers, in addition to betting on their games, often publish their research for sale.
  • Layoff:  If a bookmaker has an imbalance on a game -- say $110,000 on one side, but just $33,000 on the other -- it might choose to reduce its risk by laying off an amount with other sportsbooks.  Of course, we, as bettors, aren’t privy to when this happens, but it occurs more than you might imagine.
  • Push:  Your point spread bet pushes when it results in a tie, after the point spread is applied.  You can also push an over/under wager which lands on the number.
  • Value:  Value, of course, is often in the eyes of the beholder.  But one objective way to create value is to have favorable odds on a bet.  For example, you might have a futures bet on the Washington Nationals to win the World Series at 18-1 odds, and their odds might be +190 after winning the National League Championship Series.

Whether you're just getting your feet wet as a bettor, or you're already in the exclusive group of dime bettors, don’t be reckless.  It's essential to manage your bankroll correctly.  You're in this for the long run, not just for a one-time bet to cash in and walk away from the sports betting industry.  We're here to help you attain a sustainable sports betting career that can support your life for the long run.  So, stay disciplined, join the sportsbooks that best suit your needs, and don't forget to have fun.  We always advise not to wager more than you're able to lose -- but with dime betting, it’s even more important

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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