Mixed parlays are popular with some sports bettors, especially those who enjoy high risk betting. A mixed parlay is composed of at least two different types of sports, such as football and basketball. Parlays are thought by many to be bad bets, and mixed parlays are considered by most to be sucker bets. However, that doesn’t stop people from playing them. Let’s consider the types of mixed parlays you may encounter at an online sportsbook, and whether they are smart bets.
The two-sport mixed parlay varies from among sportsbooks. Some sites allow you to combine any two sports, while others limit your choices. In essence, you are betting on two different sports, such as baseball and hockey, or two different levels of the same sport, such as the NBA and college basketball.
This type of wager calls for high proficiency in both sports. In order to make a smart bet on something such as baseball and hockey, you’re going to have to engage in two very different handicapping scenarios. Plus, you’ll need to be right on both. Combining the same professional and collegiate sport is not as difficult but it does still have its challenges, as handicapping methods are different for professional and college sports.
If the two-sport mixed parlay is difficult, adding a third sport is even tougher. There are times that you can wager on the NBA, NHL and MLB at the same time. Imagine the amount of handicapping you’d have to do to have a shot at putting together a three-sport mixed parlay.
Up to this point, team sports have been the focus in mixed parlays. Things become even more complex when you start mixing events such as tennis, golf, NASCAR, boxing, and other such sports.
Special Mixed Parlays
Some bookmakers will offer special mixed parlays that you can play. The sportsbook will usually define the sporting events from which you will choose, and they will designate what types of picks you need to make. Special mixed parlays often hype large payouts. That’s because they are nearly impossible to win.
As an example, a bookie may offer the choice of three soccer matches, four different baseball games, and a golf tournament. Bettors must choose the winner of one of the soccer matches, the winner of one of the baseball games, the over/under on the same baseball game, and the winner of the golf tournament.
Consider the complexity of this mixed parlay. A soccer match has three possible outcomes due to the fact that it can end in a draw. The baseball game is, in essence, a parlay unto itself because you must choose the winner and totals, making it a very difficult pick. Also, the soccer matches and baseball games that the bookmaker has chosen will likely be close. They will select those events very carefully.
Finally, the golf match has a slew of players from which you can choose, and at least twenty of them are capable of winning the tournament. By adding the golf tournament, the bookie is actually asking you to handicap an entire event.
Stay away from this type of bet unless you have money to burn or are feeling exceptionally lucky.
Mixed Parlay Payouts
Mixed parlay payouts vary quite a bit. If all of your wagers are on games at -110, then you’ll basically receive the same odds you would for a regular parlay. However, you are likely wagering on events that carry very different odds. This means that each contest’s odds will be calculated individually and the total payout will be a combination of those payouts. Mixed parlays can offer large returns on relatively small bets, but because they are so tough to get right, they offer little real value to the sports bettor.
The real problem with the mixed parlay is that it complicates what is already a very difficult wager to win, the basic parlay. By adding more than one sport to your betting ticket, you’re making it that much harder to properly handicap.
Many professional sports bettors will wager on more than one sport, but they are usually really proficient at handicapping two sports and considered to be experts in only one. There’s a lot to know about any sport; becoming totally proficient at two or three and then making smart parlay bets on a consistent basis calls for otherworldly powers. Mixed parlays are a diversion. Utilize them as such.