Teaser Betting

sports betting teasers

Before we get into the details of this type of wager, in Layman’s terms a “teaser” is simply a modified parlay bet. For those unacquainted with a parlay bet, it is a type of wager that is made up of multiple individual bets. A bettor selects 2 or more teams that are playing in separate events to wager on. The bettor wins the parlay if each of the individual bets is correct.

A teaser takes this principle and adds in an interesting points spread or game points totals facet. In a teaser, the bettor purchases a certain amount of points that are used to adjust the spreads or totals of the individual bets. This allows bettors to give themselves more favorable spread. The ability to adjust the spread or totals comes at the expense of reduced odds.

Most casual bettors tend to stay away from exotic bet types such as teasers because they can appear rather daunting.  Casual bettors who are faced with the option of a teaser bet often shy away because they do not understand the fundamentals behind teasers.

However, the fundamentals of a teaser bet can be understood by reading over all the tips and strategy I have listed below for my fellow sports betting minions.

How Teasers are Displayed

Teasers follow the standard wager display that is used for other bets such as parlays. The teams to be wagered on will be displayed with their given points spread or totals. A points spread might be identified by a number such as +9 or -9 while a total will usually have a larger number such as +45. Remember that the positive indicator means that the team must lose by 8 points or less and the totals of +45 indicates that the total points scored in the match has to be 44 or less.

The standard betting information is supplemented with the bet type combination. This bit of info is a selection of point teasers made available by the sportsbook service. A range of point teasers may be available such as 6, 6.5, 7, and 9.5 points. Sportsbook services like to include point teasers with halves such as 6.5 and 9.5 in order to prevent the possibility of a push.

How a Teaser Works

The key to understanding a teaser is by using an example. Say a bettor wants to make a wager on an NFL matchup between San Diego and New York. The bettor chooses two bets for his teaser. The first bet is that San Diego will either win or lose the match by 8 points or less. The second bet is that the matchup between San Diego and New York will have a total points score of 34 or less. A teaser of 7 points is purchased.

The teaser points are then added to each individual bet. The first original bet was San Diego at +9 points. This bet now turns into San Diego at +16 by simply adding the 7 teaser points onto the regular points spread amount. San Diego now has to either win or lose by no more than 15 points in order for the bet to win. The second original bet was an over/under totals at +35. The addition of the teaser points to the over/under wager makes it a +42 point totals. The final points score of the game must be 41 points or less for the bet to win.  Should the bettor get both of his individual bets correct, the teaser will be a success and earn a payout.


Common Questions and Tips to Know About Teasers (READ!)

First, can you list all of the US-friendly online books that support +EV teaser bets? I am referring to those that give +180 for 3-team 6-pointers, and/or +100 for 2-team 6-pointers.

While most of the books at Gambling666 are solid and support solid teasers like this (for example, Bodog and  Bookmaker), I recommend NOT betting teasers at 5Dimes, mainly because they shade their lines away from the Wongs, so you’re getting even money but you’re getting 5.5 point teasers that are disguised as 6. There are no more +100 2 teamers left, sorry the books have been hit enough on those that they no longer exist.

What the heck is a “Wong” aka a “Wong Teaser?

The name Wong teaser originates because the concept was popularized in the book Sharp Sports Betting by capper/author Stanford Wong. It can also be seen by other names – mainly your standard basic strategy teaser. A Wong teaser is a two-game teaser in which teasing the spread moves it through the two key numbers of three and seven. In other words, it’s a teaser involving favorites of between 7.5 and 8.5 or underdogs of between 1.5 and 2.5. If a line is reasonably accurate then you can assume about a 50 percent chance of either team covering. If the odds were -110 then you need to win about 52.4 percent of your bets to break even.

To win 52.4 percent of your teasers you need to be able to win the individual games approximately 72.5 percent of the time. Because games end up being decided by three and seven more than 22 percent of the time, teasing through these two numbers increases the chances of covering a spread from about 50 percent to 72 percent or more (It’s actually better than that because you are also covering the numbers four, five and six, and games can also finish with those margins as well). Over the long term, then, Wong teasers are one of the few places in betting where there is a positive expectation. In other words, Wong teasers are very good for your bankroll.

What sportsbooks support high or middle limit bets?  Some have the proper odds but stick you at $100 max, which is useless unless you are near broke – any suggestions?

Here’s the thing, if you want to bet 5k teasers even the ones that allow the limits will turn off your teaser options immediately after they see you fire. Books are a lot smarter about wongs, they don’t just let you come in guns a blazing with your $$. The much better way to get 5k down is to do 5 books at 1k each. Spreading your winning around is the only way to stay in the teaser business more than a few weeks.

When betting teasers, you look for favorites of -8.5 to -7.5, and dogs from +1.5 to +2.5.

Both in theory should be +ev, but dogs both home and away for the last 25 years have shown a significantly better record.

Since 1985:

75.37 268 HOME DOG
74.85 336 AWAY DOG

Try NOT to use more than one favorite in a 3 team combination, and personally after finding this data I NEVER use an away favorite unless the total is extremely low (35 or less).

It is better to tease the home team than the road team.

See above, home teams are ok, but only use away dogs. You need to win about 71.5% to break even at -110 2 teamers and about 70% to break even at 3 team +180s. Obviously now you can see why historically away favorites are -EV even in the wong ranges.

You are looking for a game with lower totals, as this makes the 6 points you’re gaining more meaningful.

Yes, be aware of games with totals 45+. You can use them if they’re a part of a sunday or monday night game, since you can then hedge your bet by betting the other side with the spread to protect your risk on the teasers if need be. The Colts are a perfect example of this. They constantly play night games and always have a high total. At least a dozen times over the last 7 years they’re have been enormous amounts of live teasers -2 with them and the other team bet back for the entire exposure at +8.

Editor’s Note: These tips were used w/ permission by DonkDown.com


Teaser Payouts

In return for allowing bettors to alter the points spread and totals, sportsbook services maintain lower odds for their teaser payout schedule. The following lists are two traditional teaser payout schedules:

6 Point Teaser for Football:

  • 10:11 for two teams
  • 9:5 for three teams
  • 3:1 for four teams
  • 9:2 for five teams
  • 6:1 for six teams

4.5 Point Teaser for Basketball:

  • 10:12 for two teams
  • 8:5 for three teams
  • 5:2 for four teams
  • 4:1 for five teams
  • 7:1 for six teams

Are Teasers Worthwhile?

Teasers are entirely circumstantial and most bettors will only use them if the situation is tailored for it. For instance, when a bettor wishes to place a parlay but is hesitant about the points spread or totals offered, then a teaser might be the way to go. The teaser essentially offers bettors the ability to reduce the risk and still earn a return in their investment compared to standard parlay points spreads.