If the odds have it, who has the odds?
So far, books in the Ontario online sports betting market remain split on the best way to present odds to punters.
Some operators remain keen on keeping it +100 through the American odds system. Meanwhile, others are showing offerings exclusively through the decimal European system.
A select few have opened the doors to both, plus fractional odds.
Why is odds display important?
If you’re looking for a better explanation, check out our in-depth guide on sports betting odds. Typically, bettors have a preference when it comes to odds display systems.
Essentially, that’s due to what you’re used to and a different mathematical format. Everyone’s brain operates differently, so naturally, bettors will gravitate toward the one that makes the most sense.
What’s the difference between American and European betting odds?
American sportsbooks use a +100 base betting system. That means American odds base all calculations on a hypothetical $100 bet. Meanwhile, European sportsbooks use decimal odds. Here all lines are based on a supposed $1 wager.
You also see odds displayed in a negative (favourite) or positive (underdog) format.
With all that in mind, PlayCanada looks at what Ontario operators offer for display odds.
Caesars: Odds options available on desktop, not mobile
Caesars Ontario Sportsbook is — by default — displays in American odds. But there is an option to change them to decimal or fractional format if desired.
The process is easy on desktop:
- Head to the top right of the page
- Hover over “Odds Format” in bolded caps
- A drop-down menu will appear
- Select desired display odds
On mobile, it gets much more complicated.
While pages will typically invert themselves on mobile form, it seems as though the odds format tab doesn’t translate to phones. That, or Caesars removed it for some reason.
It’s an odd occurrence because the other tabs beside it — “Location” and “Responsible Gaming” — convert over from the desktop form.
In the end, I couldn’t find the button. So, even if it does exist, patrons will get too frustrated with the process of finding it and give up (IMO).
BetMGM: European odds exclusively
BetMGM Canada is available exclusively in European odds.
No toggle or American odds functionality is on offer. And even when searching “Odds Format” in the search bar, nothing popped out.
If patrons are looking to bet with the Wayne Gretzky-endorsed sportsbook, then beware, there is only one option to be had.
Bet365: Odds format easily changeable
Bet365 Sportsbook in Canada offers one of the most easily accessible and changeable odds formats of all the operators.
First off, there are four choices available (fractional, decimal, American, American/fractional). Secondly, patrons can change the format on every page visited. That’s because Bet365 has embedded a page footer in its platforms.
The toggle odds format setting is always accessible if users scroll down to the bottom of the page regardless of what sport or betting menu gamblers are on.
And yes, that includes both on mobile and desktop.
By default, the odds are American.
BetRivers: Bettors see odds in multiple formats in real-time
As soon as you hit BetRivers Canada, the sportsbooks settings tab will hit you square in the face – if you are on a desktop.
On mobile, patrons will have to click on the menu search bar for the sportsbook settings to pop up.
But even that is easily doable for even the most tech-adverse.
Visitors to the online service will notice you cannot type anything into the search bar before clicking it. Thus, visitors must click on the menu search bar and see the sportsbooks setting pop up.
When you access the tab, more treats appear.
BetRivers has a setting that allows gamblers to change the odds format when placing their wagers. That means punters could look at their NBA playoff bets in decimal, fractional and American formats.
It allows bettors greater versatility and info if they are more fluent in one form than another: Simply enable “Bet Placement Odds Change Menu” on the sportsbook setting, and you’re good to go.
PointsBet: Odd preferences available but obscure
PointsBet Canada offers an odds display preference option. But users will have to search for it.
On desktop, the option is tucked away under the menu icon in the upper left corner. On mobile, you find the icon at the bottom of the screen.
Patrons will then have to scroll through all the sporting possibilities— the odds display preference is the last option.
It could be more straightforward and visible.
But it’s there.
Clearly, PointsBet Canada views the option as more of a bonus feature than an opportunity for versatility.
Instead, featured and live bets are the premiere assets on the platforms landing pages.
Unibet: Bet Placement odds change menu comes as default
Of all the sportsbooks, Unibet in Ontario seems to have taken the most practical approach. Why not make all the odds available and allow punters to change them whenever they want?
While they place a bet.
With no scrolling back between pages to change the odds. No more guesswork. It just seems obvious. It makes you wonder why Unibet was the only sportsbook to offer such functionality.
Granted, BetRivers Canada offered the same feature of being able to change betting formats while at a betting slip. But that first required punters to head over to the sportsbook settings and then proceed.
Unibet has eliminated that step entirely.
Drop-down odds format menus are available for every possible bet.
DraftKings: Ontario’s newest operator offers American odds
Ontario’s latest gaming operator, DraftKings, is keeping it strictly American — at least, for the time being. The American-based sports betting giant only offers American odds with no options for fractional or European formats.
But it will be interesting to see if that will change, especially in light of their late (and rocky) start.
With such a seismic pull in the sports betting landscape, the operator could potentially reach more customers by changing its ways.
Then again, DraftKings is used to people coming to them.