League of Legends continued its meteoric rise in popularity with an incredible showing at the 2018 League of Legends World Championships. The tournament’s opening ceremony alone received over 90 million concurrent viewers tuning in, and the finals peaked at over 200 million viewers. As viewership has climbed in this tournament every year, so to have the prize pools, with 2018’s winner Invictus Gaming scoring a first place prize of $2,418,750.
While the World Championship in October brings in the biggest prize pool and viewership numbers, high-level League of Legends events occur year-round around the globe. In addition to watching these games, some esports fans have also taken to betting on them.
Betting on League of Legends events only adds to the excitement when spectating. It is also a great way to make use of your knowledge of the sport as a fan. Because esports betting is still a relatively new player in the market, those that have a good grasp on their favorite games can find value on live underdogs and undervalued favorites.
How Does League of Legends Betting Work?
Betting on League of Legends works the same as betting on any other event or sport. The most basic type of League of Legends bet is a bet on the moneyline in which bettors are simply betting on which side will win the match, which in standard play is a best-of-three.
The odds and payouts on each team are unique based on each team’s perceived chances of winning. For example, if two teams are very evenly matched, betting on either side will pay about the same for a win as the perceived likelihood that either side wins is quite high. But if a very strong team is playing a less strong team, the betting odds will be adjusted accordingly.
Understanding League of Legends Betting Odds
Being able to read betting odds is an important step in being able to bet on League of Legends. Let’s say that KT Rolster is a slight favorite in an upcoming best-of-three matchup against Damwon Gaming. Odds on this moneyline event listed in the American odds format might look like KT Rolster (-160) vs. Damwon Gaming (+120)
Odds with a “-” in front of the number indicate that this is the amount that you would have to bet to win $100. So a $160 bet on KT Rolster at -160 will pay $100. This ratio holds up regardless of the bet amount, so an $80 bet would yield a profit of $50 if it wins and a $1600 bet would pay out $1000.
A bet on the “+” side is a bet on the underdog. This number indicates how much you would win on a bet of $100. So betting $100 on Damwon Gaming at +120 would pay out $120, while a bet of $200 would pay out $240.
Some sportsbooks use the decimal format instead of American odds. In decimals, this matchup would be listed as KT Rolster (1.63) vs. Damwon Gaming (2.20). When using decimals, you just have to multiply your wager amount by the decimal to see what your total payout will be. For example, $100 x 2.20 on Damwon Gaming = $220. This equates to your original $100 back plus a $120 profit; the same as +120. Similarly, a $200 wager on KT Rolster will yield a total payout of $200 x 1.63 = $326, which is a profit of $126. Regardless of which format you read the odds in, the payouts on each of the sides offered will remain the same.
Most sportsbooks will let you choose your preferred betting odds format between American and decimal odds. Across all of the various types of League of Legends bets, you can figure out your projected risks and payouts using these numbers.
What Type of League of Legends Bets Are There?
- Proposition Betting (aka Prop Bets)
- Who will win a certain map?
- Which team will get first blood?
- Team to slay the first Baron
- Winners of MSI
- Winner of LEC Spring Split
What Can You Bet on in League of Legends?
While moneyline bets are the most standard way to bet on League of Legends events they are far from your only option. Another popular option is the spread, which lists the favorite at -1.5 games and the underdog at +1.5 games. A bet on the favorite at -1.5 means that it must win the match 2-0. A bet on the underdog at +1.5 games will pay out if the underdog wins the match outright OR if it loses two games to one.
Spread bets can offer nice payouts for bettors that like a side in an even matchup that believes the favorite will win 2-0. They also make matches that would otherwise be less appealing to bet on more enticing.
For example, a matchup of Gen.G (-850) vs. Sandbox Gaming (+450) might not make for a worthwhile bet as the payout is so low for a Gen.G win and the likelihood of an outright win is so low for Sandbox gaming. But on the other hand, Gen.G -1.5 (-190) vs. Sandbox Gaming +1.5 (+135) offers Gen. G backers a much better payout on a 2-0 win and Sandbox Gaming backers an achievable goal of stealing one game out of three.
Totals bets are another option for bettors that have a stronger opinion on how the game will go than who will win it. If you determine that two fairly even teams are likely to split the first two games, you can bet on a League of Legends match to go OVER 2.5 rounds. Conversely, a bet on the UNDER 2.5 rounds isn’t tied to a specific winner and just needs to end with either side scoring a 2-0 win over its opponents.
More in-depth fans of League of Legends and specific teams and leagues will be excited by the prop betting options that are available on head-to-head matchups. For example, you can bet on which team will win Map 1, Map 2 and Map 3 separately to take advantage of teams that get off to hot or cold starts.
Prop bets cover a wide array of other in-game options as well. For example, on each map, prop bettors can bet on which team will score the first kill, be the first to ten kills, destroy the first inhibitor, destroy the first tower and more. Depending on the sportsbook and the magnitude of the event, prop bets will vary from book to book, but there are plenty of great wager options to take advantage of.
Lastly, futures bets are another option for League of Legends bettors. Odds are offered on future events like which team will win the league championship, whether or not a team will make the playoffs, which team will win individual tournaments and so on. These odds are constantly being updated based on results, but the odds that you bet on are locked in.
Where to Bet on League of Legends
As esports continues to grow in popularity, more and more sportsbooks are offering betting odds on popular games such as League of Legends. If you are already using an online sportsbook, you have probably seen betting lines offered on League of Legends and other esports events.
For esports bettors just getting started with online betting or those looking for a sportsbook with more of a variety of options, BetDSI offers excellent coverage of League of Legends events. BetDSI usually posts its moneyline options up to a week in advance of the event, as the event gets closer plenty of totals bets and prop bets are added to the board.
In addition to BetDSI, other sportsbooks such as Bovada and Betway also offer extensive esports betting options. Before making a deposit, bettors can check out the interfaces and bonuses and League of Legends betting options on a handful of online sportsbooks to decide which one they like the most.