What is a Round Robin Bet?

by Big Al Staff

What is a round robin bet?

Sports betting might seem like an easy task, but if you want to do it properly, you should put in lots of work.  This means putting in hours and sometimes creating complicated set-ups when placing multiple bets.  Now, to save some time and hassle, sportsbooks came up with the round robin bet.  It's a type of bet which allows sports bettors to wager multiple parlays with a single bet.  With the use of the round robin bet, bettors can cover their bases and wager all possible combinations.  This is a risky operation as betting on parlay bets means betting on a wide variety of games.  Even though the payout can be way higher, the risk increases with every single match that's added to the bet slip.  In this betting guide, we show you how to bet round robin-style and how you can start using this type of bet in your sports betting strategy today!

What is the difference between a parlay bet and a round robin bet?

Without parlay bets, there are no round robin bets.  Any round robin consists of bets that are combined in a parlay bet.  You might wonder, what's the difference between the two of those?  The difference is the fact that in a regular parlay combination, every single match on your bet slip has to be in your favor.  With a round robin bet -- unlike parlay bets or teasers -- not every single parlay must be a winner for you to succeed.  This makes it easier to beat the house with a round robin parlay than a regular parlay bet,  but the payout will be smaller as well.

How do round robin parlays work?

You can make a round robin bet as complex as you like.  That's why it might be pretty hard to grasp at first.  The best way to understand round robin bets is by starting with an example with just three teams.  In this example, we'll take three teams from three separate sports to show the flexibility and possibilities of a round robin bet.  In this example, we'll follow these betting lines:

  • Los Angeles Lakers +7.5 (-110)
  • Dallas Cowboys -3.5 (-110)
  • Las Vegas Golden Knights +1.5 (-110)

Similar to a regular parlay bet, these teams do not have to have anything in common.  The Lakers play in the NBA, the Cowboys are in the NFL, and the Knights represent the NHL.  All separate teams from different competitions that get together in one bet.  The difference is, when wagering a regular parlay bet, all of these individual teams would have to cash.  The round robin bet builds an extra layer of security. Meaning, you would still remain profitable if one leg of your parlay does not succeed.  In practice, this means that you construct three different two-team parlays, like this:

  1. Los Angeles Lakers +7.5 (-110) & Dallas Cowboys -3.5 (-110)
  2. Dallas Cowboys -3.5 (-110) & Las Vegas Golden Knights +1.5 (-110)
  3. Los Angeles Lakers +7.5 (-110) & Las Vegas Golden Knights +1.5 (-110)

These three individual 2-team parlays allow you to be profitable even if one of the 3 teams fails to cash. There are three scenarios:

  1. If only the Los Angeles Lakers fail to cover the point spread, your parlay bet number two of the Dallas Cowboys and the Las Vegas Golden Knights will still be a winner.
  2. If only the Dallas Cowboys fail to cover the point spread, your parlay bet number three of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Las Vegas Golden Knights would still be a winner.
  3. If only the Las Vegas Golden Knights fail to cash, your parlay bet number one of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Cowboys would still be a winner.

This shows the power and flexibility of a round robin wager.  Of course, should each of the three teams manage to cash, you'll receive an even bigger payout!

What does a round robin bet payout look like?

Any sports bettor will probably know that the most ridiculous payouts usually come from parlay bets that consist of many legs.  A round robin wager does not bring as big a payout as does a bet slip with several individual parlays, but it can be pretty impressive.  Let's take the above example to illustrate the potential profits from a round robin wager.  The parlay odds don't change when using a round robin.  For 2-team parlays (assuming -110 odds on each team), the payout will be +260 on average, the standard for most online sportsbooks.  Let's say you have three teams in your round robin, and bet $100 on each of the three 2-team parlays. There are four possible outcomes:

  1. All three teams cover the point spread. You profit $780 as all three 2-team parlays pay $260. Your initial stake is $300, that would mean your total payout is $1080
  2. Two teams cover the point spread. You profit $60 as one of the 2-team parlays pays $260 above your initial stake of $100 for that parlay (for a total payout of $360).  But you invested $300 initially for the three parlays.
  3. One team covers the point spread. You lose $300. Your initial stake was $300, but none of the 2-team parlays succeeded.
  4. None of the three teams covers the point spread. Your initial stake is $300, but all your bets failed. Your total loss is $300.

As you can see in the four scenarios above, the round robin bet gives a lot of possibilities and some security.  It combines the potential payout of the parlay wagers with the security of a regular moneyline bet.  In some sense, it's handicapping your round robin versus a regular parlay.
Is round robin betting suitable for my sports betting strategy?

When it comes to online sports betting or regular sports betting at brick-and-mortar sportsbooks, it all comes down to finding the right strategy.  If you are a sports bettor who enjoys taking a risk, you might be up for some parlay betting.  But, to reduce your risks, you can play around with the round robin bets to find out whether this more secure version of parlay betting is the right way for you.  To give you some insights into effective betting using the round robin strategy, we want to provide a few betting tips:

Reduce the sportsbook advantage
When you are constructing your round robin wager, make sure you stick to two-team or three-team parlays.  When you start to increase this number, the sportsbook’s advantage becomes greater.  Thus, don't overdo it, just stick to 2-team and 3-team parlays.

Be aware of your bankroll
When you are placing a round robin wager, you are wagering on several individual parlays.  This means that every single parlay requires an individual stake.  As you could see in the example above, we bet $100 on every single parlay.  That means you're betting $300 in total.  When you want to keep your bet to a small percentage of your entire bankroll, you should be aware of the way these round robin wagers are constructed.

Sports betting is all about doing research
Any bettor can have a lucky day and have a winning bet when placing a moneyline bet.  It's not really impressive and would not require that much research.  Now, when you move into parlay wagers, it means you are betting on the outcome of several different matches.  Possibly even in various sports.  When you place a bet on an MLB game, you need to know about all the players, not to mention other factors such as the ballpark configuration, the schedule, the weather (especially wind conditions), and the matchup’s history.  And it’s similar with respect to football and basketball wagering.  So, before ever placing a bet on more than one game, make sure to do your research.

What is the best online sportsbook for round robin betting?

As experienced sports bettors, we are continually scanning the industry for the best sportsbooks out there.  You should know that not every single online sportsbook offers the possibility to place round robin wagers.  But most will do so.  In general, we like to give a couple of tips when trying to determine the sportsbook which best suits your needs:

  • Does the bookmaker offer round robin bets?
  • Can the bookmaker support your wagering limits?
  • Does the bookmaker support your preferred banking methods?
  • How are the sportsbook’s odds on parlays, since that’s the key consideration for round robins?

Of course, there are many other factors to take into consideration when making the jump to a new sportsbook, but the above will generally do the magic!  If these criteria are also important to you, then you should consider joining BetAnySports or BookMaker.  We love BetAnySports because it offers the best parlay and teaser odds in the sportsbook industry.  And BookMaker is the best sportsbook in the world for high rollers who want to bet $10,000 on an NFL game.  By now, you know all it takes to create a proper round robin bet, so enjoy yourself and start placing your first round robin!

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

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