What Does -7 Mean In Betting? Sportsbook Odds Explained

A -7 in betting terms occurs when a sportsbook heavily favors a particular team to win a matchup. To level the playing field, the sportsbook handicaps the favorite with a -7 score deduction.

Whether you’re an experienced bettor or new to the betting world, navigating the different markets, along with the jargon, can sometimes be a tricky task.

With this handy guide, we will give you the lowdown on what spread betting is, what -7 means in betting, along with some tips to maximize your chances of winning your -7 bet when using US betting apps.

What Does -7 Mean In Betting?

In recent times, spread betting has become one of the more popular markets for bettors. A point spread is where a team is given a handicap or an advantage depending on how likely they are to win or lose by a certain margin.

Spread betting is immensely common in the betting world, and you can find it in the majority of sports markets. However, it’s most commonly used in American sports like the NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLB.

A -7 point spread is awarded to a team if they are considered strong favorites in a match-up, with the aim of leveling the playing field for both sides.

For example, in basketball, this means the chosen team will start the game with a -7 points deficit in order to give the opposing team a head start. This is done in a bid to make the game more even.

It’s worth noting that the point spread market is not available for every match-up or game. For example, if a game is deemed extremely close, then there will be no point spread.

What Is Plus and Minus Betting?

The ‘+’ and ‘‘ signs tend to be placed beside a certain team to indicate which side is more likely to win that match.

For example, the ‘‘ sign will normally be placed in front of the side deemed favorite to win the tie, while the ‘+’ sign will be placed beside the team deemed more likely to lose.

Sports bettors can use these signs to know which sides the sportsbook believes will win or lose.

What Needs To Happen For A -7 Bet To Win?

In a -7 bet, the favored team starts the game with a -7 point spread. This means they essentially begin the game with a deficit of -7 points, runs, baskets, or goals (depending on the sport). To win a -7 bet on this team, they must win the game by at least 8 points.

Naturally, the riskiness of a -7 bet depends on the sport and the specific match. For instance, in basketball, where scores can often surpass 100 points for each team, a -7 bet isn’t very risky. However, in hockey, where there is an average of 6 goals per game, an 8-goal swing would be very unlikely to occur.

How Much Can You Win On a -7 Bet?

Your potential winnings from a -7 bet depends on the odds of that particular match and the amount you’re willing to wager.

When a bet is considered riskier, your odds improve, offering you a greater potential payout. However, the likelihood of winning decreases accordingly.

Additionally, if you choose to wager a substantial sum, your potential winnings increase proportionally. A larger stake leads to a higher payout in the event of a winning bet compared to a smaller wager.

A -7 Bet Will Always Be On The Sportsbooks Favorite

As previously mentioned, if a sportsbook awards a team a ‘,’ it means they are the sportsbook’s favorites to win. So, a -7 bet on a team means the sportsbook sees them as the superior side. Hence, if you bet on that favored team, they’ll need to win by a minimum of 8 points, goals, runs, or baskets for your bet to payout.

What Is The Opposite Of A -7 Bet?

The opposite of a -7 bet is simple, a +7 bet. The underdogs in a match-up are usually awarded the +7 bet.

If you place a +7 bet on a team, they’ll need to avoid losing the game by 7 or more goals, points, runs, or baskets, for your wager to be a winner.

 -7 Betting In NFL 

In the NFL, high-scoring games are quite common, with the average score per team per game coming in at around 23 points. As a result of this, an 8-point swing is not uncommon.

For instance, consider the Super Bowl LVIII clash between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers which ended 25-22 in favor of the Chiefs.

Bettors who placed a -7 bet on the 49ers still won their wager even though the team lost the game. This is because the 49ers lost by a margin of fewer than 7 points.

-7 Betting In NBA

Much like the NFL, NBA games can be very high-scoring affairs, with the average score per team per game at around 114 points, meaning an 8-point swing is very achievable.

For example, in the March 2024 NBA fixture between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Atlanta Hawks, the Lakers won 136-105.

If you had placed a bet on the Lakers with a -7 spread, you would have won your bet since the Lakers won by more than 7 points.

However, let’s imagine a scenario where the final score was 136-134. In this case, you would have lost your bet despite the Lakers winning the game. This outcome occurs because the -7 spread would leave the Lakers with 129 points, which is less than the Hawks’ final score of 134.

-7 Betting In MLB 

With each team rarely scoring over 10, baseball is generally a low-scoring game. As a result, 8-point swings can be rare but not impossible.

For example, in a March 2024 MLB fixture between the San Francisco Giants and the Cincinnati Reds, the Reds claimed victory, winning 19-11.

Therefore, had you bet on the Reds with a -7 spread, you would have still won your bet since the -7 spread will equate to a scoreline of 12-11, with the Reds still on top. And given the unexpected outcome, you would have received really favorable odds on this bet.

-7 Betting In NHL  

Much like MLB, NHL games can be low-scoring, with the total goals per game at around 6. Therefore, this makes an 8 goal swing extremely unlikely.

For example, even in a high-scoring game like the March 2024 fixture between the Ottawa Senators and the Carolina Hurricanes, in which the Hurricanes won 7-2, had you bet on the Hurricanes with a -7 spread, you would not have won your bet.

This is because the Hurricanes would have ended the game on a fictitious score of 0, making the score 2-0 to the Senators.

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