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Using bitcoins for betting on sports is a lot easier than you think. It’s why most sportsbooks now accept it and sometimes even offer larger bonuses for customers who commit to crypto sports betting over using traditional fiat currency. The basics of bitcoin betting are quickly becoming second nature for both sportsbooks and the players that use them.
If you’re new to cryptocurrency and using an online sportsbook look no further than this review for the ultimate primer on sports gambling with bitcoin!
Best Bitcoin Sportsbooks
Bitcoin Betting Basics
Before even considering placing a wager with bitcoin, it’s important to understand the basics of cryptocurrency sports betting and what options are available online.
While there are many different kinds of bets you can make, five main types account for the majority of wagers a player typically makes at a sportsbook. Here are the most common crypto betting types gamblers select:
- Money line
- Point Spread
- Live Bets
Each type of bet presents has its pros and cons. The type of bet a player selects usually depends on a number of factors including their understanding of the bet type, the sports they wager on, and their perception of value.
Let’s go over each type in detail.
Moneyline: Picking a Winner
Moneyline betting is arguably the most straightforward way to get in the game. In this scenario, the player receives a payout directly tied to the likelihood of a given event occurring. Bitcoin sportsbooks express these odds using either decimals, fractions, or what is known as American odds. For the sake of keeping things simple, let’s use the American style throughout this entire post.
American odds list what it will cost a player to win $100 on a given bet. Say for example the NFL’s New England Patriots are the favorites to beat the New Orleans Saints in the Super Bowl. The odds display as follows:
New England Patriots (-180) vs. New Orleans Saints (+150)
The above odds mean that winning $100 requires a $180 bet on the Patriots. It also means that if the underdog Saints win, a successful $100 wager pays out $150.
Keep in mind that sportsbooks embed their profits in the odds based on the betting trends of players across the sports betting market. This is why an even odds bet typically pays out slightly less than what the wager is worth.
Point Spread: Margin of Victory or Loss
The idea behind betting on the spread is to bet on an event with even odds. This means the favorite has to win by a given margin or more, and the underdog must lose by a given margin or less. Let’s stick with the Patriots vs. Saints example:
New England Patriots -6.5 (-110) vs. New Orleans Saints +6.5 (-110)
Betting on either team in the above example means it takes a $110 wager to win $100. It also means the Patriots need to win by at least seven points in order to cover the spread. The Saints, on the other hand, can lose by six points or less or win outright and the bet still cashes.
Point spread betting is particularly popular among players who love wagering on the NFL and NBA, where a spread puts a heavy favorite and a considerable underdog on a level playing field.
NOTE: Point spread betting does exist in other sports like hockey (aka puck line betting) and baseball (aka run line betting). However, because the margin of victory in these sports is more likely to be a single goal or run, puck and run line bets combine features of a money line and point spread bet together. Players get better payouts if they bet on a team to win by one score or more, as opposed to just a single goal or run.
Parlay Betting: Combining Your Bets
A parlay bet allows players to stack games together in order to increase the payout on a win. Most sportsbooks require a minimum of three selections in order to place a parlay-style bet. Both moneylines and point spread bets can be included on a parlay.
The benefit of parlaying selections is that the payout is higher. The downside is that all bets on a parlay card must hit in order to receive the payout. Winning five out of six bets as single moneyline wagers is profitable. Yet winning five out of six bets on a parlay card is a loss.
Futures Bets: Long-Term Wagers
Placing a futures bet is what it sounds like. It appeals to bettors confident in making a long-term prediction.
Right now, for example, it’s possible to pick the Los Angeles Clippers to win the 2021 NBA Championship:
Los Angeles Clippers +333
This means a $100 wager awards a payout of $333 if the Clippers are victorious. However, if any other of the 29 teams in the NBA take the crown, the bet is a loss.
Prop Betting: Hitting Milestones
The word ‘props’ is short for the proposition. A prop bet considers the likelihood of Kawhi Leonard scoring more than 27 points in a given game, or whether Tom Brady completes more or less than 25 passes in a game. The outcome of a props bet does not depend on the outcome of the game itself, just the occurrence of a specific event within the game.
Bitcoin Deposits and Withdrawals Options
Sites that accept cryptocurrencies empower players to keep wagering on their favorite sports. The best Bitcoin sportsbooks want to make it easy to do so and express BTC bets in dollars. The reason for this is that it safeguards bettors from the volatile 30-40% swings in price that digital currencies often face. Not only are most sportsbooks accepting bitcoins while shielding players from price swings, they’re also paying out big deposit bonuses for using it, sometimes up to 200%. You may also find yourself with a free bet from time to time as a thank you for using crypto for your bets.
Depositing Bitcoin on a sportsbook is simple. First you will need to buy Bitcoin with a credit card at an exchange like Coinbase or Kraken. The purchase is instant. Once in possession of bitcoins, the user transfers them to the sportsbook’s crypto wallet address. In the cryptocurrency world, a wallet address is just a string of long characters that identifies both the sender and receiver of the coins. Bitcoin’s transaction fees cost a few cents and transactions take anywhere from a few seconds to 20 minutes to show up on a sportsbook. All of these steps can be done using websites or mobile apps, and it’s all quick, easy and cost-effective.
One thing to keep in mind is that bitcoins trade to 12 decimal places, whereas traditional currencies trade to two. That means it’s possible to complete a Bitcoin transaction worth less than a penny. However, Bitcoin betting sites typically convert crypto into dollars and still subject players to minimums and maximums for both deposits and wagers.
Crypto Sports Betting vs. Other Deposit Options
Betting with cryptocurrency poses many advantages and a few disadvantages over other traditional deposit options.
For one, there’s no central authority in charge of bitcoin, meaning the player acts as their own banker. The power is in the hands of the individual. There is also technically no registration process for accessing the bitcoin network. While exchanges require identification, it is possible to acquire bitcoins off the map and transfer them directly to a sportsbook. Typically, crypto sports betting sites don’t take cash deposits without third-party involvement.
Bitcoin does have its disadvantages.
Bitcoin’s network doesn’t offer any kind of customer support. Sending bitcoins to the wrong address is irreversible. Neither the player nor the sportsbook can do anything about it. Another disadvantage is that the fees to buy bitcoin with a credit card or bank account are typically higher than a regular banking transaction fee.
Seeing that fee can definitely be an eyesore, but for both sportsbooks and gamblers, it’s still better than being at the mercy of banks and credit card issuers.
Getting Started at Bitcoin Sportsbooks
Is your favourite sporting event coming up and are you ready to engage in sports gambling with bitcoin at an online gambling site? Several traditional big-name sportsbooks now accept digital gold, including Bovada, BetOnline.ag and Intertops.
There are several factors to consider in trying to find the right bitcoin-friendly sportsbook. Looking for a site that offers crypto e-sports betting? Some the big-name sportsbooks don’t offer it. Non-traditional crypto sports betting sites like CloudBet, Betcoin, Nitrogen Sports or mBit are likely better options.
It’s important to remember that sportsbooks work to provide players with easy-to-use deposit options, attractive bonuses and promotions, and the most favorable odds in one way or another to try to get more users betting on their platforms.
Whether players possess tons of experience sports gambling with bitcoin or not, the name of the game for the players is the same. Play only with disposable funds, manage the bankroll, weigh the odds and pick the winning team.
Welcome to the exciting world of Bitcoin sports betting!