An action reverse is, in short, a two-way if bet. As with if bets, action reverse bets offer bettors a way to manage the amount risked on a multi-game bet, while still preserving some of the value. An action reverse bet is essentially two if bets made simultaneously on the same set of games. So, to understand action reverse bets, we need to start with an explanation of how if bets work.
Let’s say it’s a busy Sunday in January, and the NFL’s New England Patriots are playing a playoff game in New York against the Jets. On the same day, the Boston Bruins are in Los Angeles to play the Kings in a regular season NHL game. In both cases, you happen to be interested in picking the home teams. The wagers those games might look like this:
New York Jets (-110) to win
Los Angeles Kings (-110) to win
If this were an if bet, a single stake (for example, $10) would be risked. The outcome of the first event (in this case, whether the Jets beat the Patriots) determines whether the same size of wager is placed on the second event.
If the New York Jets WIN: bet wins $19.09, and a $10 wager is automatically placed on the Los Angeles Kings.
If the New York Jets LOSE: bet loses $10, and no wager is placed on the Patriots.
If Bets vs. Action Reverse Bets
An action reverse bet places two separate if bets simultaneously, one in each direction. An action reverse bet also risks twice as much as an if bet, because it is effectively two separate bets.
If an action reverse bet was placed on the Jets and Kings, it would cost $20, instead of $10, because two individual $10 bets are being placed. The maximum payout and amount being risked are both doubled.
It’s easiest to think of it as two separate wagers, one that depends on the outcome of the Jets game to bet the Kings game, and one that depends on the Kings game to bet on the Jets game.
ACTION REVERSE EXAMPLE: Jets (-110) to win and Kings (-110) to win
WAGER A – If the Jets, then the Kings ($10)
If the New York Jets WIN: wager A wins $19.09, and a $10 wager is automatically placed on the Los Angeles Kings.
If the New York Jets LOSE: wager A loses $10, and no wager is placed on the Patriots.
WAGER B – If the Kings, then the Jets ($10)
If the Los Angeles Kings WIN: wager B wins $19.09, and a $10 wager is automatically placed on the New York Jets.
If the Los Angeles Kings LOSE: wager B loses $10, and no wager is placed on the Patriots.
Ultimately, action reverse bets create a bet structure similar to a parlay, but with less risk. The best case scenario is if all teams involved in the bet win, but if one team doesn’t, the action reverse bet preserves some of the value.
If the Kings lost in the example above, the bettor would only lose a matter of cents, rather than the entire amount being wagered.
As with if bets, action reverse bets can involve more than two teams. Adding more teams adds the potential for larger wins.
Action Reverse vs. Win Reverse
There are two slightly different types of reverse bets that govern how the bet is graded in the event that the first event in the reverse bet is a push.
A push is most common in point spread betting. If a team is favored by, for example, seven points, and ends up winning by seven, bets on both sides of the spread are graded as a push, meaning there it is neither a win nor a loss. In the case of a push, the initial stake is returned to the bettor.
If a particular wager within an action reverse bet is graded as a push, the secondary bet is still placed. In a win reverse bet, the secondary bet is only placed if the first bet is a win – a push would cancel the second bet.
NEXT > Win Reverse Bet