Our Guide To NBA Betting Strategies

If you are looking to win at NBA betting, you need a strategy. We have the NBA betting strategy details, like NBA MVP betting, NBA best bet of the day & more.

NBA sports betting is becoming more and more popular, with more markets to bet, and potentially win, on than ever before. Our NBA experts look at the NBA betting trends across multiple sportsbooks, provide analysis, picks and predictions on every game and all of the futures markets, helping you become a winner.

NBA Betting Point Spread

Otherwise known as NBA betting lines or Handicap betting, the point spread is the margin of victory that the book makers think will happen. This margin is given a 50/50 chance of happening and book makers change the margin as head to head market odds change, however the odds will be the same for both sides of the spread. The odds you get for this market will also vary from agency to agency.

An example is:

Milwaukee Bucks -5.5 -110

Toronto Raptors +5.5 -110 

This means that the Bucks are favourites as they have the minus-margin and the Raptors are underdogs as they have the plus-margin. The book makers believe that the margin will be close to a Bucks 5.5 point victory. 

So how do you bet? If you think that the Bucks will win by 6 or more points, you would select the top option of Milwaukee Bucks -5.5 and you will profit $100 from every $110 bet. If you think the Bucks will win by 1-5 points OR Raptors will win by any margin, you would select the bottom option of Toronto Raptors +5.5 and profit $100 from every $100 bet.

If you bet on Milwaukee Bucks -5.5, and the final score is Bucks 100 Raptors 90, to work out whether you won or not, you subtract 5.5 from Milwaukee’s final score making the result Bucks 94.5 Raptors 90. In this case you would win the bet (profit $100 from a $110 bet). 

If you bet on Toronto Raptors +5.5 and the final score is Bucks 100 Raptors 90, you would add 5.5 points to Toronto’s final scoring making the result Bucks 100 Raptors 95.5. In this case you would lose the bet. 

To see today’s NBA picks and predictions for every game, check out our free NBA picks and predictions page. 

NBA Betting Over / Under

This method of NBA betting is where you bet on whether the total points (both teams combined) will go over or under a specific total formulated by book makers. You are given a 50/50 chance that the total points in that game will go over or under the total created by the book makers.

An example is:

Over (+223.5) -110

Under (+223.5) -110

Betting on this market is pretty simple. If you think that both teams will combine to score 224 or more points, you bet on the Over (+223.5) market and will profit $100 from every $110 bet ($210 return from $110 bet) if the total points combine for 224+. If you think that 224 is too high and the team’s combined scores will be less than that, you bet on the Under (+223.5) market and will profit $100 from every $110 ($210 return from $110 bet) bet if the total points combine for 223 or less. 

To see today’s NBA picks and predictions for every game, check out our free NBA picks and predictions page. 

NBA Betting Moneyline

This NBA betting style is simply head to head, who do you think will win? Book makers will determine a favourite to win the game and change the odds depending on how much better they believe one team is over another. When placing a bet in this market, you simply pick which team you think will win the game. 

Going back to our Milwaukee Bucks vs Toronto Raptors example from earlier:

Milwaukee Bucks -300

Toronto Raptors +280

If you think the Bucks will win and place a bet on them in a Moneyline or Head to Head market, you will need to place a $300 bet to profit $100 ($400 return from $300 bet).

If you think the Raptors will win and place a bet on them in a Moneyline or Head to Head market, you will profit $280 from a $100 bet ($380 return from $100 bet). 

It is important to be aware of team and player news, as players can be rested or out without any warning. This can either benefit or hurt your betting.

For example: Milwaukee Bucks are paying -300, returning $100 if they win from a $300 bet. An hour before tip off it is announced that Brook Lopez will be out, hurting their chances of winning the game. The odds for Milwaukee might increase to -200, and you still think they will win the game meaning you only need to place a $200 bet to profit $100. 

On the other side of this situation, if you hear information about a player being rested, or returning from injury early, you might be able to bet on an underdog before the odds come in when more people hear about this, and capitalize on the increased odds. 

Alternatively: Using the same example, the odds for Toronto in that game are +280. If you keep on top of your information and hear that Brook Lopez is out before book makers are able to change odds, you would place a $100 bet for a profit of $280 ($380 return from $100 bet). When book makers change their odds, if Milwaukee’s odds went to -200, Toronto’s odds would roughly come in to +220, meaning that if you placed a $100 bet now, you would only profit $220 (receive $320 from a $100 bet).

To see today’s NBA picks and predictions for every game, check out our free NBA picks and predictions page. 

NBA Betting Parlay

This method of NBA betting is combining multiple bets into one, combing their odds to create a bigger potential payout. You can pick from different markets, whether it be moneyline, against the spread or over/under, but all of the ‘legs’ of the parlay must be successful for your bet to be paid as a winner. 

Example

There are three games on a particular day of the season; Boston v Philadelphia, Indiana v Miami and Denver v Utah. 

Our best NBA picks for that day could be:

  • Boston v Philadelphia Boston -5.5 -110
  • Indiana v Miami Under 220.5 -110
  • Denver v Utah Over 225.5 -110

If you were to bet on each of these individually, you would need to place a $110 bet to create a profit of $100 ($210 return, including your stake). That would be $330 bet across the three bets for a combined $300 profit, if all three bets win. 

If you were to create a parlay with these three legs, those odds would roughly combine to +600, meaning if you place a $100 bet, you would profit $600 ($700 return, including your stake) if all three legs win. 

If you were to combine four legs with -110 odds in an NBA Parlay, the odds would roughly be +1200 meaning if you place a $100 bet, you would profit $1,200 ($1,300 return, including your stake) if all four legs win. 

To see today’s NBA parlay, check out our free NBA picks and predictions page. 

NBA Prop Bets

NBA prop bets allow you to bet on specific player and team performance for any given game. 

When betting on player prop markets, you are wagering whether a player will go over a predetermined amount of threes, points, rebounds and / or assists, for example Anthony Davis to score over / under 30.5 points. 

Some team prop bets include the first team to score, quarter or half time leader and race to 30 points, among others, for example Utah Jazz -2.5 First Quarter Only. 

Our NBA experts pick the best player and team prop markets based on research and statistical analysis, knowing how players and teams play against specific opponents, and what will be the NBA bet for you to be a winner. 

To see today’s NBA prop bets, check out our free NBA picks and predictions page. 

NBA Betting Strategies FAQs

Is the NBA rigged for betting?

No, the NBA is NOT rigged for betting. While it may seem like it after a couple of losing bets in a row, there is no fixing of games in the NBA. 

However, in 2007 an NBA referee pleaded guilty in a case accusing him of betting on games that he was officiating. He was offered money in exchange for successful bets that he suggested to companions to make and was eventually sentenced to prison. While this brought a hit to the reputation of the league, this is the only instance of fixing games in history. 

Are NBA players allowed to bet on their own games?

NBA players are NOT allowed to bet on their own games. Match fixing is prohibited in all professional sports and is an offence that can land you in jail. 

What is moneyline betting NBA?

NBA moneyline betting is where you pick who will win the game. The favourite of the game will have negative odds next to their name, meaning you have to place a bet of that size to profit $100, and the underdog will have positive odds next to their name, meaning if you place a $100 bet then you will profit that much. For a more in depth explanation on NBA betting markets, including a real life example, check out our how to bet on the NBA page. 

Where to bet on NBA over / under markets?

When betting on NBA over / under markets, bookmakers will have different total lines and odds, so it is important to know where to bet. Here at SportsTips, we have reviewed the main bookmakers, finding the best odds, promotions and specials for you to capitalize on.

Our NBA picks and predictions will have a link to the bookmaker with the best market we have found and want to bet on, so you are getting the most bang for your buck. When betting on NBA games, it is important that you check the specific rules and regulations on sports betting in your state, as each state is different.

How NBA proposition betting works?

NBA prop bets are where you can bet on the performance of a player or team. Our experts have written an article explaining everything you need to know about prop betting but in NBA terms; player prop bets allow you to bet on how many points, rebounds, assists and/or three pointers each player will have. 

James Harden Total Points
o34.5 (-110)u34.5 (-110)

In this market, you are betting whether James Harden will score 35 points or more, or 34 points or less. Both outcomes have -110 odds meaning to profit $100, you must place a $110 bet. 

FanDuel has become increasingly popular, allowing you to parlay player prop bets from the same game to multiply odds and make watching a particular game more intense!

If you were to parlay 4 player prop bets with -110 odds, the combined odds would become +1288, meaning instead of four $110 bets to profit $100 each, one $100 bet would profit $1288, if all four legs were successful. 

Do 2nd half NBA bets include overtime?

All second half bets do include overtime scores. All bets placed on full game and second half bets including moneyline, spread and total over/under include overtime scores, however fourth quarter bets do not. 

For example;

Half Time

Charlotte Hornets54
New Orleans Pelicans50

The Hornets are up by 4 points at home time, and you think the Pelicans will win the game, so place a second half moneyline bet on New Orleans. 

End of Fourth Quarter

Charlotte Hornets96
New Orleans Pelicans96

The full time scores are tied, meaning the Pelicans won the second half by 4 points, but the game is going to overtime, and that is included in your second half bet. 

Full Time

Charlotte Hornets108
New Orleans Pelicans102

The Hornets beat the Pelicans by 6 points in overtime. Although in the second half the Pelicans beat the Hornets, because the game went to overtime and the final margin was more than the half time margin, your bet would lose!