No matter which sports or bets you prefer, online sportsbooks have something for every kind of bettor. Hockey, soccer, cricket, golf, the NFL … the betting lines will be there day after day, week after week.
Below find a direct feed of live betting odds for all the major sports as posted at Canadian online sportsbooks. You can look underneath the odds feed for full walkthroughs of all your betting options.
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How Canadian sportsbooks display odds
Betting odds appear in one of three formats at the best Canadian online sportsbooks:
Most sportsbooks will have a feature that allows you to set the odds to the display of your choice, but the popularity of a particular type usually depends on location.
In the United States, American odds are the default option. In the UK, fractional odds are quite common. Throughout the rest of Europe and at Canadian sports betting sites, decimal odds are the most popular.
We’ll start here, since this is what Canadians will come across quite often. Decimal odds are popular around the world because they are easiest to convert into implied probability, which we’ll get into more below.
Think of these odds as the amount you can get back from a successful bet for every dollar you risk. Decimal odds include the original risk in addition to just the profit.
Let’s say you come across a team with 1.9 odds. This means that for every $1 you wager, you can win $0.90 in profit. This means your total return on a winning bet would be $1.90. You can easily multiply this by any amount you want to wager.
These odds are three digits or more, with underdog odds being positive and favourites being negative. The way to best understand American odds is to think of them relative to the number 100. For positive numbers, you can win that amount on a successful $100 wager. With negatives, you must risk the listed number for a potential return of $100.
Placing a bet at -110 odds requires a $110 wager to win $100 in profit on a success. Selecting a team with odds of +120 means a profit of $120 on a successful $100 bet. From there, simply do the math to figure the risk and reward when risking an amount other than $100.
Fractional odds are presented with a slash, and thus look like a fraction. To calculate your potential profit, simply multiply your bet by the first or top number (numerator) and divide it by the second or bottom number (denominator).
Let’s say you want to bet $100 on 10/11 odds, which are quite common in sports betting. The formula becomes: (100 x 10) / 11 or 1,000 / 11, which equals $90.90 in profit for a $100 stake.
See a deeper breakdown of American vs. Fractional vs. Decimal odds.
How to read sports betting odds
Before getting started, bettors must be able to look at odds and know exactly what they are seeing. This way, calculating the potential risk and reward becomes easy. Below, we have an example to break down exactly how moneyline, spread and total wagers work when placing single-game bets.
- Denver Nuggets -141 -3 (-108) O 223.5 (-112)
- Toronto Raptors +118 +3 (-113) U 223.5 (-109)
The above example came from DraftKings Online Sportsbook and uses the American format for the odds, but we will also convert them to a decimal in the examples below.
Moneylines are the easiest form of betting to understand because they simply involve predicting which team will win.
In our example, the Nuggets are the favourite with -141 odds, which translates to approximately 1.709 in decimal odds. This means that a $100 wager would stand to win $70.90 in profit. If you’re looking for a potential profit of $100, you would need to wager $141.
The Raptors are the underdog at +118 in American odds and 2.18 in decimal odds. Bettors risking $100 would win $118 in profit, getting a return of $218 once you count the initial wager.
Point spreads are a numerical figure that sportsbooks set to even out the game from a gambling perspective. The goal of the sportsbook is to have an bettors wager an equal amount on each side of the point spread, thus guaranteeing a profit for the house based on the vig (or juice) that is paid on each wager.
The point spread is different from the moneyline as it tells you exactly how much a team needs to win or lose by in order to have a successful wager. Point spreads are common in all sports but only bear that name with football betting lines and basketball betting lines. They are referred to as puck lines in hockey and run lines in baseball.
In this case, the Nuggets are -3 (-108). With American odds, this translates to a $108 wager for a chance to win $100 in profit. In decimal odds, Denver is -3 (1.925), but it means the same thing.
The Raptors spread odds are +3 (-113) in American odds, requiring a successful bet of $113 to win $100. That converts to +3 (1.885) in decimal odds. A successful bet of $100 would win approximately $88.50 in profit, bringing the total to $188.50.
Note that if the favourite wins by exactly three points, the sportsbook will treat this bet as a push and you would receive your original bet back.
Totals, aka over/unders, involve betting on whether the combined total score by the two teams will surpass or fall short of a predetermined number that the sportsbook sets. Similar to point spreads and favourites on the moneyline, these come with negative American odds and convert to decimal odds under 2.00.
A wager on over 223.5 (-112 American, 1.893 decimal) means betting $112 to win $100. If only betting $100, the potential profit would be about $89.30. A bet on under 223.5 (-109 American, 1.9174 decimal) would require a $109 wager to win $100, and risking $100 would equal winnings of approximately $91.74.
How live sports betting odds work
Another major perk of using an online sportsbook in Canada is live betting, which has erupted in popularity over recent years. Thanks to sports betting apps, bettors have access to odds that update frequently as the game progresses.
In many sports, odds change every few seconds, giving bettors the chance to place a seemingly endless number of wagers on the same contest with different odds at various points throughout the game.
Live lines change with each scoring play and as the clock ticks down, but each game also has its own pace and identity, so there are no two games with the same set of live odds. Many of the markets mirror what is available pregame, and the list may include the following:
- Moneylines (quarters, halves, periods)
- Spreads (quarters, halves, periods)
- Totals (quarters, halves, periods)
- Game props
- Player props
- Team props
What is implied probability?
All bettors should understand that odds actually tell you the probability of a given team winning a game. Implied probability is the conversion of betting odds into a percentage, and you can use it as a valuable tool when it comes to deciding whether a bet is worthwhile.
American odds and implied probability
The formula changes based on negative or positive lines. For negative odds (moneyline favourites along with most point spreads and totals), we divide the absolute value of the odds by 100 plus the absolute value of the odds and then multiply by 100. Let’s take odds of -130, for example:
- 130/(130+100) * 100
- 130/(230) * 100
- 0.565 * 100 = 56.5%
With positive odds (usually underdogs on the moneyline), the formula is similar. But instead of beginning with the absolute value of the odds, the first number is always 100. For a +120 line, it would look like this:
- 100/(120+100) * 100
- 100/(220) * 100
- 0.454 * 100 = 45.4%
Decimal odds and implied probability
With decimal odds, implied probability is very simple to figure out. All you need to do is take the number 1 and divide it by the decimal odds. Then multiply your result by 100 for a probability percentage.
Let’s take 1.75 odds as our example: (1 / 1.75 = 0.5714) x 100 = 57.14% implied probability. For longer odds such as 3, it looks like this: (1 / 3 = .3333) x 100 = 33.33% implied probability.
Vegas odds vs. Canadian sportsbook odds
The first difference between Las Vegas sports betting odds and what you see at Canadian sportsbooks may be the way the odds appear. In Canada, decimal odds are standard while the United States uses American odds. Other than that, there isn’t much between the two aside from the natural variation between odds at different sportsbooks.
If you are looking for a major difference between Canadian betting sites and Las Vegas sportsbooks, it’s the markets that they offer. In most cases, online sportsbooks have a wider range of odds compared to land-based venues. This includes props, live odds and alternate lines, the latter of which gives bettors a chance to buy or sell points in exchange for a modified payout.
Buying points involves moving the line in your favour and taking on worse odds that require a larger risk. Selling points means moving the spread or total in the other direction for a larger potential payout.
Why do betting odds move?
In the time between odds being posted and when the scheduled game starts, it’s common for odds to shift. Exactly how much they shift depends on a variety of factors, but it’s important to know that the betting market never sleeps.
There are several reasons for odds to move, including new information such as injuries, roster changes, the weather, etc. Another driver of line changes is the amount of money that bettors are putting down on each side.
If one side is heavy with most of the money, this is likely to result in an odds change that the sportsbook hopes will level out the bets between the two sides. In many cases, the market isn’t balanced, and one side will have more action than the other. This is likely to result in a line correction.
The market also shifts based on action that it deems more likely to come from professionals, also known as sharps. Sportsbooks check how much money is on each side compared to the percentage of the wagers each side is receiving, and this will help them determine where the biggest bettors are coming in. Sportsbooks aren’t as worried about the casual-betting public, but they are certainly reacting to the big fish that may have spotted some value on one of their lines.
Line shopping for better odds
Line shopping involves comparing odds at multiple sportsbooks to find the most favourable odds for a particular team or game. It is one of the simplest and wisest tactics that a bettor can use when deciding what to wager on, and it’s one of the reasons you should be signed up for more than one site.
It’s entirely possible that sportsbooks will offer different odds for the same game. With only one account, there’s a chance that you’ll be stuck with the worst possible line for your game and can’t do anything about it. But by signing up at multiple sites and doing some line shopping, you can wager on the most advantageous odds.
These are the steps to take if you have multiple betting accounts and want to shop for lines:
- Visit the site of your choice and find the market(s) you are interested in betting on. Take note of the odds that come along with that wager.
- Open a different sportsbook application and check out the same market(s) on which you are planning to wager.
- Compare the odds on the second betting site to those you originally found.
- Repeat the process for as many sportsbook accounts as you have active.
- Be sure to look at new online sportsbook apps in Canada that have just launched for better odds and promos.
- Place your bet on the site that offers the best odds.
How to convert betting odds
Looking at betting lines and not knowing how to decipher them is a helpless feeling. While it may be difficult to remember formulas for all three types, it may be easiest to understand how to convert odds to your preferred style.
American to decimal
The first thing to do is identify whether you’re converting positive or negative American odds, because that will alter the formula a little bit.
Let’s say the American odds are +110. For positive numbers, the formula is 1 + (odds / 100). So 1 + (110/100), which becomes 1+ (1.1). The decimal odds for a +110 line are 2.1.
Now let’s use -150 odds. The formula for negative odds uses the absolute value of the odds and is 1 + (100 / odds). This becomes 1 + (100 / 150), or 1 + (0.67). Once converted, -150 means 1.67 in decimal odds.
American to fractional
Again, the formula changes for positive numbers and negative numbers, but this is a pretty easy one to convert.
For negative odds, divide 100 by the absolute value of the odds and reduce it to its simplest form. A -120 line means the formula is 100/120, which reduces down to 5/6. With positive lines, instead divide the odds by 100 before reducing. A +110 line would be 110/100, or 11/10.
Decimal to American
The line of demarcation is 2, since there are different formulas depending on whether the odds are above or below that number.
For odds that are below 2, we must do (-100) / (decimal – 1) = odds. If we have odds of 1.65, that means (-100) / (1.65 – 1). Broken down to (-100) / (0.65), that equals -153.8, which is likely to round up to a -154 line.
When odds are above 2, the formula adjusts to (decimal – 1) x 100 = odds. If we have a line of 3.4 and we plug it in, we wind up with (3.4 – 1) x 100, or 2.4 x 100. This equals 240 and means the American odds line is +240.
Decimal to fractional
Decimals to fractions is incredibly simple, as all you need to do is subtract one from the decimal before turning the result into a fraction and reducing it as far as it can go.
For example, a 1.50 line means (1.5 – 1) = 0.5, or 50/100. After reduction, the fraction is simply 1/2. Now take a 4.25 line, which would be (4.25 – 1) = 3.25, or 325/100. This reduces all the way down to 13/4.
Fractional to decimal
Simply convert the fraction to a decimal and add one to it, regardless of what the fraction is. A 6/5 line equals 1.2 and if you add one to that, you wind up with 2.2 decimal odds. A 3/4 line is 0.75, and 0.75 + 1 equals a 1.75 decimal line.
Fractional to American
For odds over 1/1, all you need to do is convert the fraction to a decimal and multiply it by 100. If a line is 6/5, that is equal to 1.2 x 100, which equals a +120 line.
With odds under 1/1, turn the fraction into a decimal but then divide 100 by that number and make the result negative. A 5/6 line turns into 0.83, and 100 / 0.83 = 120.4, rounded down to -120.