If you are looking for the type of edge that many horseplayers get when they box an exacta bet, then you may want to consider the reverse bet. This sports bet takes the form of the parlay, but comes with much less risk. The reverse bet involves at least two wagers.
Basics of the Reverse Bet
The reverse bet is what is called a double-action “if” bet. If you’re playing a two-team parlay with reverse action and you place $11 on the Patriots in the first game and $11 on the Bears in the second, you’ll have action no matter what happens in either game.
The basic manner in which it works is each team occupies both the first position and second position of the betting ticket. Action is never negated. It continues, which means that a two-team reverse bet provides you with the chance of realizing numerous outcomes.
When you use the reverse bet, you have two separate “if” bets. Using our Patriots and Bears example:
- $11 on the Patriots at -7.5
- $11 on the Bears at +3.5
You can think of it this way, bet the Pats first and place the “if” on the Bears, or bet the Bears first and place the “if” on the Pats.
- Patriots- if – Bears
- Bears- if – Patriots
In our example, we bet $11 on each team at spread odds that are 10:11. Here are the various ways that this scenario can work out.
- Both Bets Win: $10 Pats + $10 Bears (Reverse Bet) $10 Bears + $10 Pats = $40 profit plus $22 wagered = $62 return.
- Both Bets Lose: You lose $22.
- Win One and Lose One: Win $10 on Pats and lose $11 on Bears and $1.00 of the other vig = a loss of $2.00.
Is It Worth It?
Like the “if” bet, the reverse wager is often used by sports bettors who find themselves in the midst of a losing streak. Along with lessening risk, this type of action provides sports bettors with a decent payout. The reverse wager offers some decent protection. Of course, if you get both picks wrong, you lose the cash, but that’s no different than if you made two individual point spread wagers.
Playing It Safe
If you like to reduce risk, then the different variations of the parlay are a good choice, even though the odds are also greatly reduced. In essence, the reverse bet is a four-team parlay, which pays around 12:1 or about $240 on a $22 bet. The return on our reverse wager is just $62.
As it is with all sports betting opportunities, how much risk you want to take, how much money you’d like to try to win, and how many teams you’re willing to bet at once are all your choice.