What is a Prop Bet? Complete Prop Betting Guide for Kentucky Bettors

Fact Checked by Shannon Lane
Prop Betting Guide for Kentucky Bettors

Prop betting allows you to wager on specific events that may occur within a sporting event, rather than on the outcome of the event itself. Prop betting is an exciting way to wager that creates unique opportunities to cash in on various aspects of a Kentucky sports betting event such as an NFL game.

They're such a fun and popular form of betting that sportsbooks will likely offer special Kentucky sports betting promos just for prop bets.

Kentucky sports betting will officially go live at retail racetracks on September 7, 2023, with Kentucky sportsbook mobile apps following online on September, 28, 2023, so now is a perfect time to learn everything there is to know about prop betting.

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Table of Contents:

  • โœ… What is a prop bet?
  • โœ… Examples of prop bets
  • โœ… Fun vs skilled prop bets
  • โœ… Player props
  • โœ… Game props
  • โœ… Why you should be betting props
  • โœ… Prop betting strategies
  • โœ… Common mistakes in prop betting
  • โœ… How to place a prop bet
  • โœ… How to win a prop bet
  • โœ… How prop bets are paid
  • โœ… Popular prop bets in sports
  • โœ… Prop betting FAQs

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What is a prop bet?

Prop bets (short for proposition bets) are bets you can place on potential outcomes that could occur within a sporting event, rather than on the outcome of the event itself. The possibilities for prop betting are virtually endless, and best Kentucky online sportsbooks will offer plenty of options for all major sporting events when sportsbook apps can go live on September 28, 2023.

Proposition bets can be placed on events regarding individual players, such as how many points an NBA player will score in a game. Other times, they may take the form of "game props," giving you an opportunity to bet on aspects of the game itself such as which team will score first.

Because prop bets focus on such random aspects of games, prop odds can sometimes be more favorable than other markets like moneylines, over/unders, and point spreadsโ€”all of which are carefully calculated by sportsbooks to be narrowly in their favor. Keep reading to learn more about what prop betting markets offer and how you can use them to wager in a fun and potentially lucrative way.

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Examples of Prop Bets

A proposition bet can be placed on just about any event in any sporting competition. Both team props and player props are available to bet on for major league games.

  • ๐Ÿˆ Football: A classic prop betting example during a football game is which team will score the first TD. This simple bet type is an example of team props.
  • ๐Ÿ€ Basketball: In a basketball game, one could bet props such as an over/under on a specific player's number of 3-point shots made. For example, you could bet on whether Stephen Curry will make over or under 5.5 3-point shots during his next game. This is an example of player props.
  • ๐Ÿ’ Hockey: Just like other sports, NHL games are commonly available on sports betting platforms to bet props. A classic example of a prop bet on a hockey game is an over/under for the number of saves made by a goalie.
  • โšพ๏ธ Baseball: Baseball games, like other sports, provide endless opportunities for placing prop bets. You could bet on the number of hits a certain player will have in the game, or on the number of hits a team as a whole will have.

Fun vs Skilled Prop Bets

Since prop bets can be placed on basically any event that happens in relation to a game, you might imagine that some of the available bet props are quite silly and random. These betting props, which require little to no skill and are really just random events that you can bet on, are called 'fun' or 'exotic' props. Meanwhile, prop bets that require knowledge of the sport or player at hand are called skilled props.

Skilled Prop Bet Examples

  • ๐Ÿ”ฅ How many points will Lebron James score in his next NBA game?
  • ๐Ÿ”ฅ Who will the Super Bowl MVP be?
  • ๐Ÿ”ฅ Which team will have more errors in the World Series?

Fun Prop Bet Examples

  • โญ๏ธ What color of Gatorade will be poured on the winning coach after a big game like the Super Bowl?
  • โญ๏ธ How long will the national anthem take to sing?
  • โญ๏ธ Which team will win the coin toss before a football game?

Player Props

Most sportsbooks that offer prop betting markets will offer both player props and game and team props. Player props are prop odds that refer to a specific player within a game. For example, when placing Super Bowl prop bets, you might see an option to bet on whether or not a specific player will score a touchdown.

Player props can be a fun way to bet on events within a game without worrying about the final outcome or even the final score. To effectively bet on player props, you should have some knowledge of the sport at hand, the player in question, and what factors (injury, opposing defense, etc.) might impact the proposition bet you are placing.

Player Prop Examples

  • ๐Ÿ‘‘ Lebron James with over or under 25.5 points scored within a certain game.
  • ๐Ÿ‘‘ Lamar Jackson with over or under 220 total passing yards during a particular game.
  • ๐Ÿ‘‘ Klay Thompson with over or under 1.5 steals during a regular season game.

Game Props

Game props are bets you can place that refer to the performance of an entire team or results that have to do with the game as a whole. Game props could have to do with the final score, or random events like which team will score first in the second half of a game or which team will have more fouls.

Game props, like player props, are usually skilled prop bets where it helps to have some knowledge of the game and the teams involved. Any legal sportsbook that offers prop markets will have a combination of player props and game props.

Game Prop Examples

  • ๐Ÿ”ฎ Which team will score the first run in an MLB game?
  • ๐Ÿ”ฎ Will the San Francisco 49ers score over or under 23.5 points in their Super Bowl game against the Philadelphia Eagles?
  • ๐Ÿ”ฎ Which team will score more points in the second half of an NBA game?

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Why You Should Be Betting Props in Kentucky

Prop bets are a fun, simple, and potentially lucrative way to engage in sports betting. Prop bet odds can present opportunities for making major profits, sometimes doubling your money (or more). Prop markets allow you lots of flexibility in how you bet, making it fun and engaging to watch sports with your friends and family.

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Prop Bets are Flexible

Unlike other types of sports betting, prop betting provides almost limitless opportunities to wager on your favorite competitions. You can bet on everything from a coin toss to how many touchdowns your favorite player will score, and everything in between. The flexibility of prop betting allows you to use your expertise in different areas of the game to your advantage. It also lets people who don't know much about sports have fun by betting on exotic props.

Double Your Money

Many serious sports bettors love prop markets because prop odds can be more favorable than other markets. While betting sites do their best to adjust the odds on props, they can't always keep up with the latest trends. For example, let's say you want to bet that Stephen Curry will make more than 6 three-pointers in his game tonight. While that doesn't happen very often, you happen to know that the opposing team's best perimeter defender is out sick tonight. You take advantage of the great odds on this prop bet before they change, wager a responsible amount of money, and win big!

Prop Bets are Simple (and fun)

Whether you're betting NBA props, MLB props, or just want to have a little more fun while you watch the super bowl, prop bets provide a simple and fun way for people of all experience levels to try out sports betting. While some bet types might be difficult for novices to understand, props tend to be straightforward and easy to grasp, even for people who don't watch a lot of sports. Even if you don't care about the final outcome of a game, you can have fun watching sports with family and friends by betting on props.

Prop Betting Strategies

If you're serious about making money with prop betting, there are some strategies that you can employ to maximize your chances of doing so. Managing your bankroll, becoming an expert in a specific sport or type of bet, and targeting mispriced odds are three strategies that can help you to take your prop betting to the next level.

Bankroll Management

Managing your bankroll is critical in all types of gambling, whether you are sports betting, playing casino games, or playing skill-based games like poker. Bankroll management starts with only depositing money into your sports betting account that you can afford to lose. Next, you should choose a unit size, or the percentage of your bankroll that you plan to wager on each event. Professional bettors rarely bet more than 1% of their bankroll, while a common unit size for most bettors is between 1% and 5%. Finally, you must keep track of your wins and losses so you know where you stand and don't end up in over your head.

Specialize in a Specific Sport or Market

Props cover a massive range of sporting events and aspects of play. Even the most obsessed sports fanatics can't be experts in every aspect of every sport. You can increase your chances of placing a winning bet by focusing on specific sports, leagues, and markets that you have the most knowledge of. The best props are oftentimes simply the areas of sports that you are most familiar with.

Look for Mispriced Odds

One thing that makes props unique is that they offer odds for random events within games that most major sports betting markets don't focus on. Random stats about individual players and other specific props can be difficult for sportsbooks to place odds on. You can expect major bet types like point spreads and over/unders to have carefully selected odds that are slightly in the sportsbook's favorโ€”but it is often possible to find props with more favorable odds. Finding mispriced odds and exploiting them is a key to making money with prop betting.

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Common Mistakes in Prop Betting

If you want to be successful when placing prop bets, it's critical to know what not to do and how to avoid common mistakes. Four things that novice prop bettors tend to get wrong are overvaluing the narrative, ignoring the vig, failing to line shop, and overextending their bankroll. We'll break down what these mistakes mean and how to avoid them below:

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Overvaluing the Narrative

When it comes to sports, there is always a narrative. Sports media plays a huge role in how we see the games we watch and who we believe will perform well. If you want to be successful when placing prop bets, it's best to be as objective as possible. Don't put too much emphasis on underdog/favorite narratives, hero narratives, or any other story that makes it seem like a certain outcome is particularly likely. Just analyze the stats and make an informed decision for your prop bet.

Ignoring the Vigorish (Vig)

Ever wonder how sportsbooks make money? The answer is with vigorish (also called the "vig" or "juice"). The vig is the way that sportsbooks adjust their lines to be slightly in their favor so that they can make a profit. Let's take, for example, a prop bet about the super bowl coin toss. This bet has 50/50 odds, so you should expect to make a $100 profit if you bet $100. But most sportsbooks will offer odds of -110 or so on a bet like this, meaning you would only win $91 if you bet $100. You can't ignore the vig when bettingโ€”understand that sportsbooks are highly profitable because they adjust the odds in their favor.

Failing to Line Shop

Line shopping is a critical part of every successful sports bettor's strategy, and failing to do so is an easy way to shoot yourself in the foot when prop betting. Line shopping refers to the process of searching for the most favorable odds for the bet you want to place. For more specific player prop bets, there might only be one sportsbook that offers the bet. But for most general bets, you can find the prop on multiple sportsbooks with different odds. You should always line shop when placing a prop bet and choose the sportsbook with the most favorable odds.

Overextending Your Bankroll

All successful gamblers must keep close track of their bankroll and practice self-control to ensure that they do not bet too much. There are two ways to overextend your bankroll: First, you can bet money that you cannot afford to lost. This is extremely dangerous behavior and is a red flag for a gambling problem. The second way to overextend your bankroll is to bet too much of your money on a single prop. In general, you should only bet 1-5% of your bankroll on each prop.

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How To Make a Prop Bet in Kentucky

Making a prop bet in Kentucky will be easy once sports betting has been legalized in Kentucky. Just follow these steps:

  • โœ… Download a few top Kentucky sportsbook apps and set up accounts.
  • โœ… Choose a sport to bet props on and find a specific prop you want to bet on.
  • โœ… Take the necessary steps to give yourself the best chance of turning a profit.
  • โœ… Place your bet!

How To Win a Prop Bet in Kentucky

You can never be sure that your Kentucky prop bet will win, but you can still take steps to set yourself up for success.

  • โœ… Compare lines between different sportsbooks.
  • โœ… Research the narrative and the vig and make an informed but objective decision.
  • โœ… Bet props in sports and markets that you feel confident in.
  • โœ… With a little luck, win some money!
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How Prop Bets Are Paid in Kentucky

You can claim your prop wager winnings in a number of different ways depending on where you placed the bet. If you wagered with an online sportsbook, you can set up withdrawals from your account. Most major sportsbooks have options to withdraw directly to your bank account, to an intermediary account such as PayPal or Venmo, or to a prepaid card associated with the casino. Withdrawal times vary with online sportsbooks but generally speaking, they take a few days.

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Popular Prop Bets in Sports

Although prop betting is not limited to sports, there is an unbelievable amount of unique prop bets that can be made on all of your favorite sports teams. 

Here are some of the most popular prop bets in sports:

NFL Prop Bets

When it comes to sports betting in the U.S., football is the biggest sport, and it's not even close. NFL prop opportunities are plentiful and can make games more fun to watch. 

For example, let's say the Indianapolis Colts are playing the Bengals, and you want to bet on which team will score the first TD. You bet $10 on the Colts scoring first with -105 American odds, meaning you could win a little less than $10 if your bet hits.

Super Bowl Props

While NFL props are popular, Super Bowl odds for prop bets are on another level. You can bet on everything from the length of commercials to how many points your team will score. A classic Super Bowl prop example is betting on the coin toss. If you wager $100 on the home team winning the toss with -110 odds, you'll win about $90 if your bet hits.

NBA Prop Bets

NBA games are exciting to watch and betting props on these games can be equally riveting. Pro basketball games are fast-moving with stats stacking up for all the players on the floor, so there are plenty of opportunities to bet on the NBA. Let's say you want to place a bet on Brandon Ingram of the New Orleans Pelicans having a big game. You bet $200 that Ingram will score over 35 points. Since this is a long shot, the odds are good: with odds of +700, your bet will cash out with $1400 if it hits.

MLB Prop Bets

Baseball fans know that the sport is all about statistics, which means ample opportunities for prop markets. Let's say you have a feeling that Aaron Judge is going to have a good game against the St. Louis Cardinals. You wager $50 that Judge will hit both a homerun and another extra-base hit. The line for this prop is +650, meaning you can win $325 if Judge comes up big and your bet hits.

NHL Prop Bets

NHL fans will be delighted to find that all the major sports betting platforms offer proposition betting opportunities on major league hockey games. When the Nashville Predators have their next game, you can find plenty of options for placing prop bets. If you think the team will come out hot, you might place a $100 bet with +120 odds that the Predators will score in the first period. If your bet hits, you'll win $120.

College Football Props

College sports are huge in Kentucky, and football is a big part of that. There might be stricter rules for what you can and cannot bet on when it comes to college sports, but game lines are usually up for grabs. If you believe that the University of Kentucky Wildcats are going to have a high-scoring third quarter, you could place a $100 bet that they score more than 13.5 points during the period. With +300 odds, your bet will make you a $300 profit if it hits.

College Basketball Props

If you're a big Wildcats fan like many people in Kentucky, you're probably wondering whether you can bet on the next game. Betting sites offer lines on every Wildcats game. You could wager on the team scoring more points than their opponent in the first half. Since they're the favorites, the odds are -150. Your $75 bet can win you $50 if it hits.

Nascar Racing Props

Kentucky is home to lots of NASCAR fans, and we have good news for you: racing is fair game when it comes to prop bets. Let's say you want to bet on which driver will hit the pit first. You wager $150 on Carl Edwards, with +600 odds. If Edwards pulls into the pit before any other drivers, you'll cash in on $900 in winnings.

Horse Racing Prop Betting

If Kentucky is famous for one thing related to sports, it's the Kentucky Derby. Horse racing betting is huge in the state, and now you can place all sorts of prop bets on your favorite races. Maybe you've got your eyes on a particularly fast horse in this year's Derby, and you want to bet that the horse will beat the old Derby record time set by Secretariat in 1973. The chances are slim, so you bet just $20 with a line of +1500. If your bet wins, you'll make $300.

Get Started Making Prop Bets in Kentucky

Whether you're a seasoned sports bettor or someone new to gambling, prop bets offer a fun and exciting way to play. You can bet props to have more fun while watching sports with loved ones, or take things more seriously and try to really make some cash with these unique bets.

With sports betting sites offering all sorts of prop options on a huge variety of competitions, it has never been easier to place bets on your favorite MLB players, college athletes, or NFL games.

Prop Betting FAQ

Author

Adam Wernham
Sports Betting Contributor

Adam Wernham has over eight years of professional copywriting experience. Growing up in the Bay Area, Adam developed strong ties to local teams including the Giants, Warriors, and 49ers. His passion for sports and writing make him a strong voice on all things sports betting and a great asset to the BetKentucky staff.

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