Betting on Team Sports vs. Individual Sports: Which is Easier?

With so many new odds and lines to choose from at online sportsbooks in Canada, what are your best bets? Is there an obvious entry point for those new to betting on sports?

Should you dive right into betting on the big four—the NHL, NFL, NBA and MLB? Or should you look for an edge in individual sports like golf, tennis, boxing and MMA?

Here’s a look at the pros and cons of each approach.

Pros and cons of betting on team vs. individual sports

Here’s a quick look at the pros and cons of betting on both team sports and individual sports:

Individual vs. Team SportsProsCons
Individual Sports- Increased betting options
- Easier to research
- Increased predictability
- Fewer straightforward futures options
- Injuries have a more significant impact
- High prices on favourites
Team Sports- Straightforward futures betting
- Individual injuries can have less of an impact
- Popularity leads to increased line movement
- Fewer betting options
- Understanding team dynamics can be difficult
- Expert oddsmakers have the edge

What team sports can you bet on?

The major sports leagues you can bet on in Canada include:

You can bet on various team accomplishments, including who will win the title at the end of each league’s season, through futures betting markets. You can also bet on the statistical performance of teams and players via prop betting markets. Plus, you can place the following types of bets on just about every game in every major sports league:

  • Moneyline: These are bets on one team to win or, where possible, a game to end in a draw. Moneyline bets are booked at the currently posted odds, which are negative for the game’s favourite and positive for the underdog. The odds tell you how much you stand to win if your pick wins. The specific number indicates how much you have to lay on the favourite to win $100 and how much you can earn for every $100 you bet on the underdog.
  • Point Spreads (Run Line, Puck Line): These are bets on one team to win with a point spread set by sportsbooks factored into the game’s final score. At the end of the game, you either deduct the points from the favourite or add them to the underdog to determine what side wins the point spread bets. They call this a run line in MLB and a puck line in the NHL. Point spread bets are also booked at the currently posted odds, which work just like moneyline odds.
  • Totals (Over/Under): These are bets on both teams in a game combining to score a total that’s more or less than a specific line set by sportsbooks. Most totals lines include a half point, so there is no push. You bet either the Over, which means the total score will land above the line, or the Under, which means the total score will land below the line. Both bets are booked at the currently posted odds, which work just like moneyline odds. You win if you’re right.

Which individual sports can you bet on?

Major individual sports (and organizations) you can bet on in Canada include:

  • PGA Tour, European Tour, The LPGA (Golf)
  • ATP Tour and WTA Tour (Tennis)
  • UFC and Bellator MMA (Mixed martial arts)
  • WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO boxing

Bets available for individual sports depend on the sport.

Golf and tennis have tournaments. You can bet on who will win an upcoming tournament through futures odds markets and ongoing tournaments through outright markets.

You can also bet on the finishing position of a golfer or tennis player in various ways.

You can bet on every tennis match that’s a part of a tournament and golfers that are part of a tournament in groups or head-to-head matchups against other golfers.

Golf offers even more betting opportunities. You can place golf bets on almost anything up to and including the nationality of a tournament winner or who the top finishing Canadian will be in any event.

Betting on fighting sports like boxing and MMA usually involves individual fight betting. However, there are futures markets that offer betting on a fighter to win a title within a certain time period. Individual fight bets are usually moneyline bets on a fighter to win. However, you can also bet on things like the winning method and how many rounds a fight will go.

Live betting on team sports or individual sports

Betting isn’t limited to pregame or ahead of a match anymore. These days, there’s in-game or live betting, allowing you to bet on both team and individual sports in the middle of the action. The live sports betting odds change alongside that action, which means they change fast and online sportsbooks and sportsbook apps are the only way to keep up.

The odds will likely change again before you can get a bet down any other way. For the most part, in-game and live betting is in the same markets as before a game or match. However, some new markets may open up as well, particularly in individual sports like golf and tennis, where you can suddenly bet shot by shot or point by point.

Betting on Team Canada/Olympics

Betting on team sports and individual sports extends beyond major professional sports leagues and the top individual sports organizations.

That means you can bet on Team Canada or Canadians in major international events like the Olympics and Olympic Qualifying, and all kinds of World Championships like the IIHF Hockey World Championships.

Top live sports betting apps in Canada

Here’s a quick look at the top three online and mobile sportsbooks in the world when it comes to live and in-game betting. Each may be headed to your province soon:

  • DraftKings Sportsbook: DraftKings has designed the most comprehensive and innovative sports betting app around. The betting carousel is customizable, but the default is to have the live betting options right up front. Competitive live odds and a decent bonus and promo structure are great added values.
  • FanDuel Sportsbook: FanDuel is a market leader wherever it goes. The fact that many promos and live betting options are so easy to find is part of the reason why. The live lines selection and odds are simply unparalleled.
  • BetMGM Sportsbook: MGM is a leader in everything gambling-related, and live betting on the BetMGM app is certainly gambling related. The huge list of live betting options takes BetMGM over the top.

How to start betting online in Canada

Get started betting on both team and individual sports with an online sportsbook in Canada by following these four simple steps:

  1. Click our link to any Canadian online sportsbook website in your province.
  2. Register for an account with the sportsbook using your name, email address, date of birth and any other required personal and account info.
  3. Make a deposit into your account using a credit or debit card, Interac, online bank transfer, third-party payment processors like PayPal or any other method available.
  4. Browse through the live and upcoming betting markets and start placing your best bets.

Best Canadian sports teams & players to bet on

Here’s a look at some Canadians and Canadian teams you should seriously consider betting on:

  • Best Ever Canadian Team: The Montreal Canadiens are the NHL’s winningest franchise. With 24 Stanley Cups, Montreal’s hockey team is also the second-winningest franchise in all of sports. Only the New York Yankees have more titles. While they haven’t won a cup since the early 1990s, they did make the Stanley Cup Finals last season, making them Canada’s best team to bet on in any sport. Place bets on Canadiens games or find odds to win the Stanley Cup.
  • Best Canadian Tennis Player: This one’s a tie since Bianca Andreescu‘s U.S. Open win is a couple of years ago now and Leylah Fernandez made the U.S. Open Finals in 2021. Either Canadian tennis player is a good bet to win a lot in the immediate future. That being said, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov are no slouches either.
  • Canada’s Most Promising Team: The Toronto Blue Jays had a year to remember in 2021, vaulting into a playoff spot at one point. The team won 13 of their first 16 in September and looked like a shoe in to win a Wild Card berth in the MLB postseason before fading to finish one-game back of the last wild card spot. With Kevin Gausman and Jose Berrios now heading the rotation, things continue to look promising for the coming decade. You can place your Jays bets here.
  • Best Canadian Golfer: Corey Conners is the highest-ranked Canadian player currently on the PGA Tour. However, Mackenzie Hughes had the third-round lead at the 2021 U.S. Open and was in contention at the 2021 Open Championship before he finished sixth, the best-ever finish for a Canadian at The Open. Either one is always a good bet to be top finishing Canadian in any golf event.
  • Best Canadian National Team: Do we really have to tell you that it’s the 27-time IIHF World Championship, six-time World Cup, and nine-time Olympic-winning Canada men’s national ice hockey team? Although don’t sleep on the rising Men’s Soccer National Team and always great Women’s Soccer team.
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