Whether you are a sports fan or just looking to bet, understanding terms like odds and lines is important. It helps you make informed wagers.

Sports betting has become a popular pastime and is now legal in many states across the country. However, many newbies are confused by the lingo that comes with it. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a handy glossary of the most common sports betting terms you may encounter to help you understand how your bets are settled and what you should expect from a sportsbook.

Point Spread (also known as the “spread”) – The number of points the oddsmakers think one team will win or lose by. Typically, a team that has a negative spread will be considered a favorite. A team with a positive spread will be considered an underdog.

Handle – The total amount of money wagered on a game or event at a sportsbook. The handle for Super Bowl LVII was $153.1 million at Nevada sportsbooks.

Official Betting – The use of official league data to grade in-play wagers.

Two US states with legal sports betting – Tennessee and Illinois – have inserted mandates into their laws that require the use of official league data for in-play wagers. In both cases, the requirements are backed by a qualifier that says the official data must be available on commercially reasonable terms.