How Do ‘Dead Heat’ Ties Work in Golf Betting?

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Jordan Spieth watches his tee shot on the 14th hole during the second round of the Masters golf tournament on Friday, April 9, 2021, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
(AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Ryan Hannable @RyanHannable May 22, 2023, 10:45 AM

When betting on golf, there are a few times when dead heat rules come into play. The term got its name from racing but is now common in golf betting.

A dead heat refers to ties in bets like top 5s, top 10s and top 20s, or other markets like first-round leader.

When players tie, the bet amount is usually cut by how many players tie for those spots.

For example, if you bet on Jordan Spieth to finish in the top 5 at the Masters and he finishes T-3 with three other players, dead heat rules apply, and you would win 75% of the original bet.

This is because there was one extra player inside the top 5.

That means a $40 bet on Spieth at +900 to finish inside the top 5 becomes a $30 bet, and you’d lose the other $10. Instead of a $400 return, it would be a $300 return.

Dead Heat Tie Rules First-Round Leader Bets

Dead heat ties most commonly come into play with first-round leader bets.

Books will cut first-round leader bets by how many players finished tied for first.

For example, if after the first round of the Open Championship, the leaderboard had these three players tied for first: Collin Morikawa (30-1 odds), Sahith Theegala (60-1), Zach Johnson (150-1) bets would get cut by 2/3 because three players tied for first.

Morikawa would pay out 10-1, Theegala 20-1, and Johnson 50-1.

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About the Author

Ryan Hannable

Read More @RyanHannable

Ryan Hannable is a Content Managing Editor on the Web Content Team for BetMGM. Previously, he was a New England Patriots beat writer for WEEI in Boston. He also has published a golf book, “The Ultimate Book of Golf Trivia: 600 Questions and Answers.”

Ryan Hannable is a Content Managing Editor on the Web Content Team for BetMGM. Previously, he was a New England Patriots beat writer for WEEI in Boston. He also has published a golf book, “The Ultimate Book of Golf Trivia: 600 Questions and Answers.”