How Do You Hedge a Futures Bet?

by | May 6, 2022

Winning a big futures bet can make any gambler excited. These are the big paydays everyone dreams of, and most futures bets have great odds. With a win within sight, most have thought at least once or twice about what they’d do with the winnings.

Of course, a big futures bet is never a guarantee. Even if a team is one win away from a title, everything could crash down and end up as a loss. For gamblers, a way to ensure some type of win is to hedge a futures bet.

There is always the risk of losing your original wager in gambling. Hedging bets helps minimize this risk and guarantees a profit when done at the right time. So, how does someone hedge a sports bet?

Hedging Made Simple


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The simplest way to describe hedging a bit is that a gambler will place a second wager against the original bet if they aren’t sure what the outcome will be. This provides a win-win scenario in many cases.

After figuring out possible outcomes, next is determining how much to bet on each market. This will depend on the odds and overall risk tolerance. A good rule of thumb at the very least is to bet an amount that would return the original stake if the first bet loses and double the money if the second bet wins.


Example Scenario on Futures Bets


Let’s say at the beginning of the season the New York Knicks have 50-to-1 odds to win the NBA championship. That means putting a $100 wager down would yield $5000 in winnings.

The next get on a roll and make it to the NBA finals. They go up against the Los Angeles Lakers, and at this point, either team can win at all. Hedging the original bet means placing a wager on the Lakers to win which makes mathematical sense. In this example, the Lakers have even odds to win the title.

Some like the idea of letting it all ride and winning all $5000 originally that on. Others want a bit of safety, so they will sacrifice potential winnings so that they are in a win-win situation. A smart hedge would be something along the lines of a $1000 bet on the Lakers. This would result in:

Knicks win: $5000 winnings – $1000 hedge bet = $4000 total profit

Lakers win: $1000 winnings – $100 original bet = $900 total profit

There’s a way to mess with the numbers and get things closer or further apart depending on what the person is comfortable with. The key here is ensuring victory either way. Without a hedge bet, a person has a 50/50 shot at winning $5000 or losing $100.


Why Smart Money Prefer Hedging


Seasoned, smart sports gamblers almost unanimously suggest hedging a bet if possible. The goal is to win consistently and not miss out on potential winnings. Sacrificing a bit of a big win is better than going home empty-handed.



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