NBA Betting Tips: How to Place Bets on NBA Games

NBA ARTICLES » NBA Betting Tips: How to Place Bets on NBA Games

Browsing through hundreds of NBA betting lines might take a lot of work. This thorough NBA betting guide covers all of the various sorts of bets you can place on NBA basketball games to aid novice and seasoned bettors alike.

From primary basketball betting lines like betting against the spread to the sophisticated and nuanced world of teasers and parlays, knowing how to bet on NBA games is easy with the correct information. Knowing the various lines, how they operate, and how they may or may not fit your level of participation and interest is critical to understanding how to bet on NBA games.

Unlike Allen Iverson, we’re not talking about practice. You cannot withdraw your chips after you have put in your wagers. The match has begun!

NBA Betting Explained

As basketball season comes around each autumn, the NBA is the crown jewel of the basketball world, and all eyes are on the league and its players. As a result, you may place various bets on any game at any moment.

Several betting possibilities are available, ranging from how many rebounds and assist a Chicago Bulls player will receive to who will win the NBA title this season. Maintaining all of those alternatives daily is difficult. This NBA betting tutorial will teach you how to bet on NBA games correctly.

How to Choose the Best NBA Betting Site

Choosing the best NBA betting site boils down to promotions and personal choice. There are several excellent betting sites, each with its unique set of NBA betting regulations.

There are excellent alternatives, ranging from well-known online sportsbooks like DraftKings and FanDuel to recent arrivals like Barstool Sportsbook. The best place to begin is by examining the various sportsbook alternatives and determining how you feel about each. In certain circumstances, you may prefer one brand over another, which might be as easy as that.

NBA Promotions to Avoid

As previously said, one critical component of selecting the best NBA betting site is ensuring you do your homework regarding promotions. Each sportsbook has its own set of advertisements meant to reward bettors for joining up with them.

Often, a promo will take the shape of a risk-free wager, but there are also unique league-specific promotions that sportsbooks will provide when a new season begins.

How to Bet on the NBA: Single Game Bets

When you join an NBA betting site, the first lines you’ll see are moneyline bets, spread bets, and total bets. These are single-game bets since they concern the result of a single encounter.

Single-game bets are the simplest to grasp. Nevertheless, before deciding which NBA games to wager on, you must first understand how to read NBA odds. The following sections will introduce you to the various lines in your sportsbook and explain how to evaluate betting odds.

Betting on the NBA Moneyline

The moneyline is the simplest and most popular NBA bet. When you wager the moneyline, you predict who will win the game outright. The margin of victory is unimportant.

Reading moneyline odds is simple. The team with a “+” next to it is the underdog, while the club with a “-” next to it is the favorite. The corresponding figures represent the implied probability that the sports betting site has ascribed to each team’s chances of winning the game. The odds may also be used to determine your potential winnings.

A positive moneyline (for example, Boston Celtics +180) shows how much you can gain on a $100 wager. A negative moneyline (e.g., Golden State Warriors -200) specifies how much you must bet to win $100.

In this example, if you put $100 on the Celtics, you may earn $180. Your total payment would be $280: your $100 bet plus the $180 profit. To win $100 betting on Golden State at -200, you must risk $200. As you can see, betting on the favorite entails a higher risk for the same payoff.

Check out our odds-related tutorial if you need more assistance evaluating probabilities and what they signify for your payoff. After you’re comfortable reading NBA odds and understanding the fundamentals of moneyline betting, our complete guide to betting the NBA moneyline contains more advanced strategic considerations.

NBA Betting: An Introduction to the Point Spread

Betting against the spread is known by many different names: betting the spread, point-spread betting, and betting against the spread (ATS), to mention a few. Be assured they all relate to the same thing. Betting against the spread is unusual because you are not choosing an outright winner or loser.

If you wager on the favorite, they must win by a certain amount of points. In contrast, if you bet on the underdog, they must only lose by the stipulated amount of points.

Spread betting may seem perplexing, so look at our example line above to understand how it works. The Golden State Warriors, with a negative number next to their name, are the favorites to win. If you bet on the Warriors, they must defeat the host club, the Celtics, by at least 7 points to effectively “cover” the spread and make your wager a winner.

Another way to look at it is to remove 6.5 points from Golden State’s final score. If Golden State wins after subtracting 6.5 points, they have covered the spread.

Putting money on Boston? For your bet to win, they must either win the game outright or lose by 6 points (or less). A “+” symbol in the spread indicates an underdog. This is a simple and accurate method for determining which team the oddsmakers believe is the least likely to win.

Why are half-points used when betting against the spread?

Half-points are one of the most perplexing components of betting against the spread (In our example, the space is 6.5 instead of 6 or 7). Seasoned sports bettors refer to these half points as “the hook,” a method that removes the chance of a tie or “push.” Since basketball has no half-points, you will either win or lose your wager when a half-point is added to the spread.

The game may conclude in a “push” if no “hook” exists. In general, a push results in the return of your bet. But keep in mind that some bookmakers consider a push a loss.

Why do sportsbooks like spreads?

Spread betting is quite popular, especially when betting on the NFL or NBA.

Spreads are used by sports betting platforms to promote equal betting on both sides, which is the most secure method for operators to profit. If equal money is placed on both sides, the sportsbook may pay out the winners from the pool of funds gathered from the losers while still pocketing the five or ten percent “vig” (bookmaker’s charge) received from everyone.

It is vital to notice that the spread is flexible. Things may (and will) alter in the run-up to the game. If bettors spend significant money on one team, like Golden State (-6.5), the sportsbook may change the spread to entice additional betting on the opposing side.

Sportsbooks use this to reduce their own financial risk. Stay calm if the lines alter after you’ve put your wager. Your bet is locked in at the odds you choose.

Totals Betting

Totals betting (sometimes known as over/under betting) is also simple. You’re betting on the total number of points scored in a game. Total the points achieved by each team.

In this case, the total is set to 210.5. If you bet on the over, you are wagering that the aggregate final score of Golden State and Boston will be more than 210.5 points. Half-point bets, like spread bets, are intended to prevent a push or tie.

You may have noticed that both the over and under have a -110 next to them. The amount, like the moneyline, represents the payout. In this example, whether you bet on the over or the under, you must wager $110 to earn $100.

Although the over/under odds are usually set at -110 or -105, the payoff for the over and under is not necessarily the same. The sportsbook may occasionally provide more appealing odds to entice more activity on the less popular side of a sure bet.

NBA Betting on Several Games

When numerous games are involved, betting on the NBA gets much more challenging. There are more factors to consider when there are more games. Yet there’s a solid incentive to get familiar with multi-game bets: the increased complexity comes with the possibility of significantly greater winnings.

Seasoned gamblers like the betting lines associated with parlays, teasers, and props. Let’s take a closer look at each.


A parlay is any bet that includes gambling on the result of more than one event or proposition. These results might occur in the same game or over consecutive games.

If you wanted to wager on the Celtics winning and the game’s overall score being less than 210.5. A parlay enables you to bet on both outcomes with a single wager. It is also feasible to add another event to this stake (say, the Lakers beating the Clippers). If you win all of your parlay bets, your payoff will be substantially more than if you gambled on just one event.

Remembering that there is no award for correctly predicting two out of three occurrences is vital. Each bet inside must be suitable for the parlay to be considered a winner. Consequently, parlays may give massive returns on a tiny investment, but only because the likelihood of accurately forecasting numerous occurrences is often relatively low.