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Live line movement refers to how odds on a certain event shift while the event itself is being played out. Live line movement occurs within in-play odds markets and behaves very differently to markets available before the event starts (ante-post).

How Can A Bet Be Placed Under Live Line Movement Conditions?

To place a bet, you must already have an account with any of the bookmakers offering live bets for an event that is unfolding. Assuming that you have already deposited into your online account with the bookmaker in question, you can place your wager via the bookmaker’s site by clicking the appropriate action button.

You will then be redirected to the betting slip on the bookmaker’s site, which is automatically created by OddsChecker, and prompted to log in if you have not already done so. It is worth remembering that an in-play bet is often subject to several seconds' delay, allowing for any fluctuation.

Range Of Live Markets

Depending on the profile and popularity of the event, the range of in-play markets available can be quite impressive, especially in team sports like the NFL. Here are but a few examples of live markets that are typically available within any team sport.

Handicap (European/Asian)

As an alternative to the straight moneyline bet, bettors may still be able to back teams to breach a certain winning margin – or attain one that sits inside certain parameters (i.e., a margin of 8-10 points).

This is particularly useful when one team is a heavy favorite but concedes early. In European handicapping, increments are whole (i.e., a handicap of -4, -6, -8) while Asian handicapping sees decimalization in action to provide a wider range of options (-1.5, -2.25 -3.5, -4.75 etc.)

First/Next/Last Scorer

This can refer either to a team or an individual within the team, with the latter naturally commanding much better odds given the sheer number of variable outcomes. Some bookmakers will also give bettors the opportunity to back teams or players to score within a certain time period or via a certain method.

Correct Score (+ Time Zone)

In a twist on the correct score market, bettors can also back the score to stand in a specific way by a certain milestone of the game. In the NFL, for instance, you can bet to predict the score after the 1st/2nd/3rd quarter, or the score after the third/fifth/seventh inning in MLB, or how it stands after 15, 30, 60 or 75 minutes of an MLS game.

How Does Line Movement Work?

With in-play odds set by computer algorithms, understanding the inner-workings of live line movement is vitally important. Unlike ante-post wagers, bets placed via in-play markets are often subject to a delay of several seconds, and this allows for any fluctuations in the market, which change at a volatile rate after the flashpoint event but soon settle.

While fluctuations can be a frustrating element to negotiate immediately after a flashpoint event, they can be beneficial, even when they do not occur in reaction to them. For instance, the odds against a favorite are subject to lengthen immediately after the start of the match, even if it just something as innocuous as possession statistics. In that regard, it is sometimes worth waiting until the start of the event and looking out for any spikes in odds against favorites.

Fluctuations are ultimately unpredictable, but they can be a friend as much as a foe. Indeed, some 'spiking' odds can stay in place for as much as a minute. Putting a combination of these into a betting slip and using them in a multiple bet can make for some decent profits.

Timing Key To In-play Success

When it comes to live line movement, it is ultimately all about reaction time. Key flashpoints will send odds shifting one way or another, with the beneficiary seeing theirs shorten, while the opposition will see a lengthening. This is the case in all sports, and no matter how heavily one party was the favorite, their odds will always lengthen in the event of a setback.

A Hypothetical Example

In one of the annual NHL all-star game semi-finals, the Central Division’s all-stars take on their Pacific Division counterparts. Pacific enter the match as outsiders, with Central priced as slight favorites. In this scenario, Pacific begin strongly and score inside the first minute.

After betting is "Suspended" for several seconds, new odds begin to show. For instance, Pacific’s moneyline odds after the goal might shorten from the original ante-post odds, while Central’s odds for a win lengthen from the original price.

The effect of the goal on Pacific’s odds in this scenario shows just how reactionary some in-play markets can be, sometimes to the detriment of those backing the underdog. By waiting for in-game developments, bettors can gain longer odds for backing the favorite, especially if they concede to their opponents early on but still stand a strong chance of winning regardless.

The in-play market’s inherent nature is what keeps us all on the edge of our seats, awaiting the next flashpoint as the audience witness history in the making. While there can be disadvantages to betting on live line movement, it can be greatly advantageous to those with a strong understanding of the game or team in question.

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