The game of basketball has enough firepower to compete with soccer, football, baseball, and other sports for the title of the most popular. Frequent score changes, the speed with which the game’s momentum shifts, the frantic crowd in the stands, and action-packed gameplay make basketball incredibly alluring. Among its most diehard fans are sports bettors.
When it comes to basketball betting, players can expect to see a variety of standard bets, such as point spreads and moneylines, as well as those more exotic bets, such as props, futures, and more. Thanks to the fast-paced nature of basketball games, especially in the NBA and EuroLeague competitions, live betting is the go-to choice for many.
While there is no guarantee that your every bet will be a winning one, there are some things you can incorporate into your betting arsenal. This guide will arm you with tools that can help you maximize your chances of winning more basketball bets, so keep on reading.
Master the Betting Markets
The first thing you need to do to get better at basketball betting is learn what types of bets are available. Mastering the betting markets will immediately increase your chances of winning a bet since you will better understand what types of bets you can place. Here are the most common betting markets you can opt for:
- Moneyline — Moneyline is the type of wager where you bet on the winner of a basketball game. Let’s illustrate with an example. Say the Los Angeles Lakers are hosting the New York Knicks. The Lakers are the favorites, with the betting odds set at -220, while the odds for the Knicks to run away with it are +180. This means that if you back the Lakers to win, you need to stake $220 to win $100. If you go with the Knicks, a $100 stake will bring a $180 profit.
- Point spreads — Point spread is probably the most popular form of betting on basketball games. The bookmakers use the spread to even the scales between the two competing parties. For example, a -5.5 spread means the favorite needs to win by 6 points or more to cover the spread. If you opt for the underdog, then a loss by 5 points or less will bring you a win.
- Over/under — Over/under bets let you stake your money on the total number of points in a game. The bookmaker will assign a certain number of points, and it is your choice to bet if there will be more (over) or fewer (under) points in that game.
- Futures — Futures are types of bets where you can bet on the winner of a competition, conference, playoff round, individual player rewards, such as the MVP of the NBA, and others.
- Props — Prop bets include those more peculiar wagers, such as Will LeBron James score in every quarter? or Will Barcelona score 100 points against Real Madrid?
Follow the Stats and Injury Reports
Before deciding on the game and the bet you want to place, make sure you have done your homework. Studying the individual stats of a player and how that player fares against a particular matchup or team can be crucial when, say, you are betting on the number of points that player will score. Also, make sure to follow the injury reports and all the possible changes in a roster. Some coaches will rest their best players if a game is a blowout which can affect the overall total of points in the game.
Home Court Advantage Is Key in the NBA Playoffs
The majority of basketball bets are placed on NBA games. Statistically speaking, home teams have a significant advantage, especially when playing a team from the opposite conference. The road trip duration, how many games a particular team has played on the road in a row, etc., all matter. However, during the playoffs, that advantage is even greater. For example, it is well known that the altitude in Denver has helped the Nuggets gain the upper hand over most other teams. Even if the home team are not the favorites to win it, you can risk a bit more by backing them and hope the home crowd and the venue itself can be the leverage they need.
Shop for the Best Lines
The odds and betting lines you get from sportsbooks make all the difference when it comes to winning more bets and the payouts. Browse all betting sites to see the betting odds they give for a specific basketball game before choosing where you want to bet. No difference is too small, especially in the long run.