Esports odds

Not only do you need to have a good understanding of esports and betting to beat the bookmakers. It’s necessary to have good knowledge of esports odds, how the odds are compiled, what it is and the different odds formats and where to find the best esports odds. On this page, you’ll find everything you may need to know about esports odds to increase your chances of being successful.

How esports odds are made

Esports odds are made up of two parameters, the outcome probability in percentage form and the margin that is set by the bookmaker. Odds are initially compiled by analysts using odds compiling software. Odds compiling software uses different data points that are needed to calculate outcome probabilities. After the probabilities are known, the bookmaker will publish the odds with a margin. The bookmaker margin is basically the commission a bookmaker takes for taking the risk of offering esports odds on matches. Once the odds are published, and people start betting on either side of a market, the odds will adjust according to the betting activity. This activity will cause fluctuations in the odds. If new information is revealed, maybe the star player is injured and won’t participate, then the odds will be adjusted quickly to reflect the new outcome probability of the match.

List of bookmakers with esports odds

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Different odds formats

First, we’ll cover the most common odds formats. The same as with different metric systems around the world, different odds formats are used depending on where in the world you are. The standard odds format in Canada is Decimal odds. Decimal odds format is also popular in Europe, but not everywhere in Europe, if you visit a UK bookie you’ll find Fractional odds. If you move south of the border, they prefer the American odds format.

  • Decimal Odds 1.50
  • American Odds -200
  • Fractional Odds 1/2

Decimal esports odds 1.50

Decimal odds is a way to display odds intuitively. Outside of Canada, decimal odds is the preferred way to show odds in Europe. The odds value includes the total return from a 1 unit stake. Decimal odds always have a value greater than 1.

An example of decimal odds:

  1. Odds 1.75
  2. Stake $100
  3. Winnings $75
  4. Total return $175

American esports odds -200

As the name of this esports odds format implies, American odds is commonly used in the United States. Due to the proximity of Canada and the US, it’s not uncommon to see American Odds in Canadian bookmakers. It’s beneficial to learn how to interpret American Odds.

American Odds include the “+” and “-“ and how the odds relate to a $100 wager.

The “+” sign typically indicates that you’re looking at the odds of an underdog. The number following the “+” is the amount a $100 bet would win.

As an example, FaZe are big underdogs at +215 in a CSGO match versus Astralis. A $100 bet would win $215. Total return would be $315.

The “-“ sign typically indicates that you’re looking at the odds of a favorite. The number indicates the amount you’re risking to win $100. Astralis on the other side of FaZe, are favorites of winning at -260. This means that you would have to wager $260 to win $100.

Fractional esports odds 1/2

Fractional odds are often referred to as UK odds due to the popularity of this format within the United Kingdom. Fractional odds were originally used in horse racing and is one of the oldest odds formats, now also available for esports odds.

The first number in the odds value is the numerator. This value represents the amount of money your bet will yield. The second number is the denominator and represents the amount you bet.

As an example, Ninjas in Pyjamas are favorites to win against Na’Vi in CSGO. NiP are 10/15 to win. You wager $150, and your potential win is $100. If NiP wins your total return is $250, $150 wager and $100 profit.

You are looking at an underdog bet where you’re betting on the high odds. Say that you just signed up to and you’re looking at the Dota 2 match between TNC Predator and Team Secret. Team Secret are underdogs to win at 5/1. If you bet $100, the potential win would be $500. The total return, including the wager amount, would be $600.

Outcome probability

Outcome probability is relatively straightforward. The higher the chance of a team winning, the lower the odds are. The lower the chance of a team winning, the higher the odds are. In a match where Astralis are favorites to win against FaZe in CSGO, Astralis will have low odds while FaZe will have high odds.

If, in this example, Astralis have a 66.7% chance of winning and FaZe have a 33.3% chance of winning. Then this would translate to Astralis having odds of 1.50 to win and FaZe having the odds of 3.0 to win.

The formula to convert the outcome probability to esports odds is:

1/ outcome probability

Astralis has a 66.6% chance of winning, 1 / 0.66 = 1.50

FaZe has a 33.3% chance of winning, 1 / 0.33 = 3.0

Let’s do another example for clarity. We have the match between Toronto Ultra and Chicago Huntsmen in Call of Duty. Toronto Ultra have a 50% of winning and Chicago Huntsmen have a 50% chance of winning.

Toronto Ultra, 1 / 0.50 = 2 in odds to win.

Chicago Huntsmen, 1 / 0.50 = 2 in odds to win.

Bookmaker margin

In the last example above, the match between Toronto Ultra and Chicago Huntsmen, the teams had an equal chance to win at 50%-50%. The odds for any team to win is 2.0. If you have been betting on esports for a while, you may have noticed that the bookmakers never offer these odds. You might be asking yourself why they don’t do that. The reason is that the bookmakers need to ensure that they make a profit in all outcomes.

Consider a scenario where one person bet on Toronto Ultra to win and another person bet on Chicago Huntsmen to win. The bookmaker offers 2.0 odds on Ultra and 2.0 odds on Huntsmen. Each person bets $50 on their team to win. Toronto Ultra ends up winning, and the bookmaker pays out $100. The stake plus the win, the win amount is the stake from the other person’s bet. In this case, the bookmaker made no profit as they paid out 100%.

To ensure a profit, bookmakers use a margin. The average margin in Canada for esports odds is 8%. This translates to a payout percentage of 92% on all bets. In the match between Toronto Ultra and Chicago Huntsmen, this would mean that the odds offered would be Toronto Ultra to win at 1.86 and Chicago Huntsmen to win at 1.86.

Different online Canadian bookmakers usually offer different margins. When choosing a bookmaker, it’s beneficial to check which one provides the best esports odds.

To check what margin any given bookmaker has for their esports odds you can use the following formula.

We’ll continue using the match between Toronto Ultra at 1.86 and Chicago Huntsmen at 1.86 in this example:

(1/ decimal odds) x 100 + (1/ decimal odds) x 100 = Bookmaker margin.

(1/ 1.86) x 100 + (1/ 1.86) x 100 = 53.76 + 53.76 = 7.52%

Parlay odds

A parlay bet is a bet where you have made multiple combined bets into one bet, where every bet you selected is needed to be correct for the bet to win. Parlay bets are also commonly referred to as multiple bet, combination bet or accumulator.

For example, let’s say it’s the first day of Dota 2 the International. Empire vs paiN, Na’Vi vs Vega and Mineski vs Forward Gaming are all playing. You want in on the action of all these games, and you want to combine the games into one bet. You select the following:

  • Empire to win at 1.68
  • Vega to win at 2.11
  • Forward Gaming to win at 1.78

The odds for each of these bet selections are multiplied together to a parlay odds. This value is then multiplied by your stake.

1.68 x 2.11 x 1.78 = 6.20 x $20 = $124

For your parlay wager to win, all the bet selections you made must end up as a win. Empire needs to beat paiN, and Vega needs to beat Na’Vi and Forward Gaming needs to beat Mineski. If they all win, this bet will give you a net profit of $104: $124 minus your stake of $20. If any of these teams lose, then your whole parlay wager is lost. With parlay bets, the risk is generally higher, but so is the potential payout. In many provincial bookmakers, parlay bets are the only types of bets that are allowed. Single bets are prohibited. Our list of bookmakers doesn’t include any of the provincial state-owned bookmakers.



After reading and learning more about esports odds, we suggest that you take a look at our esports betting guide if you didn’t do so already. The combination of reading both these pages will give you a head start when betting on esports.