What Is a Moneyline Bet? An Ontario Betting Guide

By Ryan Buschmeyer
Fact Checked by Matthew Asher

Ontario sports gambling, at its most basic, is a question of “who is going to win the game?” Initially, this is how “bookies” took wagers, whether it was on baseball or in the billiard room. As gambling progressed, however, bookmakers started to figure out that there were other ways to take action like total bets and point spread bets. Thus began the rapid expansion of betting types.

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A moneyline bet is the original type of bet. The gambler is literally just betting on the winner of a straightforward bet; no spread, no cover. As the late Al Davis used to say, “Just win, baby!”

This OntarioBets.com article will cover moneyline betting in greater detail, as well as how to bet moneylines, how to read the odds, and how to predict payouts when using any sports gambling sites in Ontario.

Also covered: how moneylines differ from sport-to-sport and how to include your moneyline in a parlay to really increase your odds for a great payout.

What is a Moneyline Bet and How Is It Used in Ontario Sports Gambling?

The moneyline is the sportsbook’s indicator of a bet where the bettor is wagering on the real-life outcome of the game. There is no regard to how much aside wins by, just that they win. A Moneyline bet can be used as a standalone on your bet slip or can be combined with a couple of other wagers in a parlay.

The moneyline will also indicate which side is the “favourite” and “underdog” in the match. This is especially important in baseball, soccer, and hockey, as the spreads do not matter as much in those sports. Paying attention to the moneyline in basketball and football can also be a clue to how strongly the book feels about its point spread.

The Favoured Team

In gambling, the “favourite” team is the team the sportsbook expects to win the game. The moneyline on the favourite will always be indicated with a minus sign, e.g. -110. This means that if a bettor wants to bet the favourite to win on the moneyline, they have to wager more money than they expect to get back, should the bet payout.

A sample moneyline on football would look like this for the CFL: 

  • Toronto Argonauts -110
  • Ottawa RoughRidgers +285

In this example, Toronto (the favourite) is carrying odds of -110. Calculating winnings of odds will come later, but the takeaway for this section is your betting favourite is always a negative number.

The Underdog Team

The betting “underdog” is the team NOT expected to win. Odds for underdogs are always listed as positive numbers. In the above example from the CFL, Ottawa is +285 on the moneyline. This means that Ottowa is the underdog and betting them to win carries a better payout should they win.

Even/Close Teams

Sometimes the book is not willing to set the outcome, so the odds are even at +100, likely. In this case, the bettor will need to bet $100 to win $100. Calculating evens payouts is easy, the win pays out the bettor with the exact amount as the stake.

Outcomes On The Moneyline Wager

With moneyline betting, there are three options for the bet. The bet wins, loses, or there’s a draw. In some sports, the draw is not an option because leagues prevent ties but in soccer especially, this is a real possibility.

Unlike betting the point spreads, the possibility for a draw on your bet slip is impossible for most sports. Here’s a rundown of outcomes of moneyline bets and what to expect for each.


As stated earlier, betting the moneyline is betting aside to win the match, so if they do then the bettor gets paid. Simple and easy. If the favourite was bet, the payout will be a percentage of the stake. Players need to keep in mind that betting favourites are a lower payout so higher stakes are necessary for high payouts.

Winnings are typically expressed in one of two ways: "profit" and "payout." A profit is an amount won in the bet. In the case of a $100 bet on a favourite (odds: -110), the profit would be $90.91.

A payout is expressed as the amount bet, the "stake," plus the amount won. If the bettor wagered $100 on a favored team (-110) and the bet is successful, the total payout will be $190.91; the original stake ($100) plus the profit ($90.91).


Losing a moneyline bet just means the side that was chosen lost the match. It happens. The downside is the player loses all of the stakes, so if the player bet $100 then the book keeps the money, regardless of the odds.

Wagering on the underdog odds, +285 in our example above does not expose the bettor to additional loss over or above the original stake. The ONE exception to this rule is pointed betting on basketball.


In Soccer and some other sports, the possibility of a draw is real. In this case, the moneyline bet on either side is considered a loss. This is because with soccer and sports can end in a draw, that bet is a possibility.

Some sportsbooks even offer the bet of “ends with zero,” which is a bet that neither team scores at all, and the game is a draw. 

Calculating Payouts On Moneyline Odds

Several sites offer odds calculators, us included, but so do betting sites and sports gambling apps in Ontario. When the bettor puts the bet and stake in the bet slip, the app will automatically show what the expected payout will be.

That said, it is essential for sports bettors to truly understand sports betting odds and how to bet payouts are calculated. Fumbling through the bet slip is not efficient.

Minus Odds

Odds with a minus sign (-110) are an indicator that this is the favoured team, or that the game is a Pick-em, in either case, the bettor will need to wager more than the expected winnings.

In American odds, the expression is stated as such “bet this much to win $100.” In the case of -110 odds, the bettor will need to wager $110 to win $100 profit. A winning wager on a favourite with these odds pays the house $10 (the “juice”) to win the $100…because the favourite was selected.

Betting favourites does not always have to be low payouts, however. Adding a couple of favourites to a parlay can result in odds on the plus side, because of the increased risk to the bettor.

Plus Odds

Plus odds are where the bettor can really make money if they can pick the right underdog. Underdogs are always listed with a plus sign, e.g. +285 in our example above. In this case, betting Ottawa (+285) with a win would profit the bettor $285. In the case of underdog odds, the bettor is, in a sense, beating the house because the “juice” is irrelevant.

Even Odds

Betting evens is particularly attractive to bettors because they only need to win 51% of the games to make a profit. Winning a $100 bet on even odds means the bettor profits $100 on the bet. The payout, including the original stake, is $200.

NHL Moneyline

NHL betting sites in Ontario offer hockey moneylines. That's where the bettor needs to focus attention. Betting the puck line (spread) can evaporate in the case of overtime, which happens a lot in the NHL…or an empty-net goal late in the 3rd period.

For example, the Toronto Maple Leafs are hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins; the Pens are the underdog at +340 and the Leafs get the favourite odds at -175. A successful $100 bet on the Pens profits the bettor $340, while that same stake nets $57.14 for the Leafs. 

NFL Moneyline

With professional football, opportunities abound, but moneylines are where most of the action goes.

Here’s an example: Kansas City Chiefs @ Buffalo Bills (-10.5). In this case, the Bills are a 6-point favourite (spread).

The Chiefs are the underdog and carry odds of +389 and the Bills are -538. In the case of this game, a $100 bet on the favoured Buffalo Bills would profit only $18.59. A successful bet on the Lions would profit the bettor $389 on a $100 stake.

NBA Moneyline

In the NBA, moneylines operate in much the same way NFL. The odds, however, get better as the spreads increase. In NFL odds, a 15-point spread will correlate to an underdog moneyline 723 dollars lower than the NBA, whereas a 5-point spread will have the NFL’s moneyline higher with higher odds.

Payouts of NBA moneylines would operate in standard ways. For example, the Toronto Raptors are favored over the Golden State Warriors. The Warriors are +471 and the Raptors are -685 on the moneyline. In this scenario, a $100 bet on the Warriors would pay a profit of $471 while a successful $100 bet on the Raptors only profits $14.60. 

MLB Moneyline

Moneylines with Baseball, as well as Soccer and Hockey, are the primary driver because there is not a spread. The run line on baseball games never changes (always +/- 1.5), so the major action is the odds on the moneyline.

In regular-season baseball games, it is more important to look at the moneyline odds than the run line. The Blue Jays may be +170 vs. the Yankees at -150 in a game. In this case, betting $100 on the Blue Jays could net the bettor $170, while that same stake on the Yankees would only profit the bettor $67.

Bettors planning to bet baseball need to pay very close attention to moneyline odds and the minor differences between different sportsbooks, such as FanDuel Ontario.

Because baseball is a volume-betting sport, even a couple of dollars in odds can make a big difference over a 162-game season. Getting better odds on the moneyline in baseball is like getting a better price on the bet.

Moneyline Parlay Bets in Ontario

Parlays are combined bets in a “bundle.” Including multiple bets into a parlay can significantly increase the odds of a big payout, but the danger is also high. In a parlay, only one of the possible outcomes needs to fail for the entire bet to lose.

If, however, a player can get a successful parlay, the payouts can be big. Adding a moneyline underdog to a parlay can really boost the payout odds. Here’s a sample:

2-leg parlay including: Game 1@ -135 (Moneyline favourite), Game 2 @ -110 (Moneyline favourite), Total odds: +232.

In the 2-leg parlay, the two favourite games add up to a +232 odds, paying out $232 on a $100 bet. If, however, the bettor adds just one underdog at +110, the payout odds jump to +598. This 3-leg parlay would profit $598 on a $100 bet…just by including one underdog with very meager odds.

How Is Moneyline Related To A Spread Bet?

With a straight bet, the player needs the selected team to “cover” the point spread to win the game. If that’s the favourite in a 6-point spread, the winning team needs to win by 6 points or more to win the bet. With moneylines, this is not the case, the bettor just needs the team to win the game to win the bet.

Moneylines and moneyline odds can, however, indicate how much the book is confident in its point spread. In the case of hockey, baseball, and soccer, because the lines are so small, the odds on the moneyline are a better indicator of how the book feels about the potential outcome of the game.

If you'd like to start moneyline betting on sports in Ontario but are unsure how or where to start, there is an option for new bettors.

Many leading sportsbooks in Ontario, such as BetMGM Ontario, offer sign-up offers for new bettors.

While any form of betting comes with its own set of risks, sports bettors can take advantage of new sign-up offers to try moneyline betting in Ontario first hand.

Moneyline Betting in Ontario FAQ

Moneyline wagering is super simple. Bettors will pick a winner of the match or game. If that team or individual wins, the bet wins. The point spreads don’t matter and neither do the total points scored. The spread might be 13 points, but the moneyline only requires one point better than the other team.

Simplicity. The biggest benefit of the moneyline is the player doesn’t have to worry about a point spread, a cover or anything else. The player can just focus on picking a winning side. The other benefit is the payout for the underdog if played successfully.

A +200 moneyline means two things: first, the team affixed to this line is the underdog, meaning they are not expected to win the game. Secondly, the +200 odds means that a player betting $100 on this team would profit $200 on a successful bet.

A moneyline is paid out utilizing the combination of the original stake plus the profit of the bet. In the case of the previous question, the $100 bet on the +100 line would payout $300 to the bettor. This is the original stake of $100, plus the profit of $200.

The moneyline, as mentioned above is simply a bet on the winner of the match. The spread is the number of points need to cover for a point spread bet. In the case of moneylines, the book throws out any point spreads.

Yes! Moneylines are a great addition to parlays because adding even meagre odds on the moneyline to a parlay can significantly increase the parlay’s odds. A player could add a series of moneyline bets to a parlay and get high-paying odds with games that might be very easy to predict.


Ryan Buschmeyer is a software developer professionally, which make him perfect for analyzing the top betting apps in terms of what features they have to offer as well as identifying what sets each sportsbook apart from the other brands in Ontario.

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