When a sportsbook doesn’t have an outright favourite ahead of the match, it is called a PK, pick ’em, PK ’em, or pick.
A lot of time, effort, and algorithms are put into bookmakers creating odds and setting lines for games. Sportsbooks have a lot of information to take into account when setting odds and lines. Form, head-to-head performance, and the betting public are just three of the elements bookmakers consider.
Yet, some games are not so easy for bookmakers to create odds for.
There are some events in which the teams are just too evenly matched, making it difficult for sportsbooks to decide which side is the favourite.
So if you have ever wondered what does PK mean in betting – it simply means the bookmaker doesn’t have a favourite.
Is PK betting the same in all sports?
The answer to this question is “No”.
PK betting is different in various sports. In football, games often have a low total of goals, with three possible outcomes.
In sports like baseball, basketball, ice hockey, and American football, there are no draws. Teams will go to overtime and play out the game until there is a winner.
Sports other than football may provide small differences in the PK odds. There may be a slight favourite in terms of the odds, but it won’t be much. The usual odds for two options are -110 for both sides. The odds may change slightly.
For example, the Las Vegas Raiders are playing the New York Giants, and bookmakers have posted the following PK odds:
- LV Raiders PK –105
- New York Giants PK –115
The Giants are the slight favourite according to the odds. If the bet is successful, you will make more money on a PK bet on the Las Vegas Raiders.
The odds listed for this NFL game are in the American format. The American format differs from others such as fractional odds and decimal odds, so it is important you read the lines correctly.
In the example above, if you want to wager on the New York Giants, you will need to stake £115 to win £100. And you would need to wager £105 on the Las Vegas Raiders to win £100.
How does PK betting work in football?
PK betting is the same as “Draw No Bet”. The odds for the two markets provided by sportsbooks will be similar.
The Draw No Bet wager eliminates one of the three possible outcomes of a football (soccer) match. The sportsbook will refund your stake if the match ends in a draw. If your selection wins, however, you will receive a payout.
Of course, if your selection loses, your bet loses.
PK occurs in point spread betting. It may appear as +0 or –0, as neither team receives positive or negative points, making them a favourite to win.
Normally, in point spread betting, the teams receive points from the sportsbook. For example, a team may receive +2 or –2 for the game.
However, PK means neither football team has an advantage, as the two sides are too evenly matched. There is no favourite, and there is no underdog for the game.
Making A PK Bet On Football
A PK bet is basically a straight-up winner bet. If you wager on Team A at PK and they win, then the bet wins. If you bet on Team A at PK and they lose the game, then the bet loses. It is like making a 1X2, but you are instead wagering on the points spread.
However, betting at PK means the winning team covers the spread, so the number of goals doesn’t matter.
If you are betting at PK for a football match, then you will have three possible outcomes: a win, a draw, or a loss.
Betting at PK on a match that ends in a draw would mean the bet ends in a push. Therefore, your initial stake would be returned or refunded. Hence the reason a PK bet is similar to a Draw No Bet wager.
In soccer betting, PK means the teams are evenly matched. For example, you may see the Champions League Final between Real Madrid and Manchester City evenly matched with sportsbooks unsure which side is the favourite.
- Manchester City PK –110
- Real Madrid PK –110
You simply need to pick the team that will win the match at full-time to win the bet. The bookmaker will refund your wager in the case of a draw.
What is spread betting?
Regardless of your betting experience, you may not be familiar with spread betting. It is common in American football (NFL), basketball, ice hockey, and baseball. It is becoming more popular in football (soccer) betting, and the big sportsbooks offer it for the major leagues.
Point spread betting is also growing in popularity in European football betting circles.
With this type of bet, you are more concerned about the “margin of victory” when making a spread bet. For example, if you wager on Team A at +1, you need them to win by one goal to win the bet. The bet would be a push if Team A lost by one goal.
You can make money off point spread betting by researching and gaining experience using the market. The great thing about sports betting is the amount of research and studying you do for a particular match is up to you.
Many experienced bettors will make their point spread bets as soon as the odds are posted. This allows them to lock in the odds before the lines move due to public betting or team news being released ahead of the match.
We have a more detailed explanation of Point Spread Betting here with extra examples.
PK Bets Vs Point Spread Betting
The great thing about the PK bet is it doesn’t matter the number of goals a team wins by.
Rather than betting on the point spread, the game’s straight-up result is the most important aspect of the bet. You want the team you wagered on to win the match, the number of goals they score doesn’t factor into a PK bet – as long as they win!
PK betting is a great way to make money in sports.