- An offer or suggestion.
- A statement or problem that must be solved or proved to be true or not true.
- To propose a plan or deal.
A prop bet, or proposition bet for long, is a wager placed on any event which doesn’t have an immediate impact on the outcome of the game.
Call them novelty bets, side bets, or just plain props.
These are plays for those who don’t necessarily care about who wins and loses the game but still want to get in on the fun. Prop bettors hone in on the individual, specific, sometimes consequential but often not, events that make up the match.
These differ from the traditional bets which have been offered by sports books for decades, things like the point spread, the money line, and the over under (how many total points will be scored in a game).
Bets like that have been the bread and butter of bookmakers for years, but we live in a golden age of betting options, so why limit yourself?
Some prop betting examples:
- Who will be the first team or player to score?
- How many points, yards, assists, blocks, shots, will a specific player get?
- Will player A or Player B score more points?
- How many games will a team win in a season?
- How long will a certain event, such as the national anthem, take to complete?
- Who will be drafted first overall?
- Which team will win the coin toss?
- Which team will win the first replay challenge?
The variations are endless, and because there is no standard type of prop bet, such as money lines or point spreads, sports books will offer their own brand of unique prop bets.
As a result, a little bit of research and shopping around can lead to a plenty of fun and profit for bettors.
Not Just For Sports Anymore
Prop betting isn’t limited to just the world of sports, as the phenomena has spread into all areas of life, from politics to the red carpet.
Want to bet on who will win the Democratic leadership nomination? There’s a prop for that.
Have a strong lean on who will win the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress? There’s a prop for that, too.
Want to back your favorite contestant on The Bachelor or Survivor? You’d better believe there’s a prop for that.
Profiting From Props
For some, props are nothing more than a diversion, a way to have some fun without having to take the result of the game seriously.
For those who are sharp, alert and willing to work, however, prop betting on sports can be a profitable endeavor.
The reason? Bookmakers don’t put nearly the time and resources into making sure their prop betting lines are accurate that they do for the traditional bets.