My foray into the world of sports betting was as a punter, primarily following the ups and downs (well, mostly downs…) of my local team as they battled against the ever-present threat of relegation. Over time, I began to become more and more interested in the ins and outs of various strategies and became adept at spotting a good operator.
My day job was, at the time, writing and editing for a local newspaper, so turning my professional skills to my interest in sports betting followed naturally. I started writing about sports betting as a hobby initially with my own blog, analysing odds and providing betting tips where I thought I could find value. Eventually, I was headhunted to write the same content for a betting firm, which resulted in me leaving my local paper job behind and turning my professional interests solely to sports betting writing by 2017. Since then, I have been proud of the body of work I have been able to produce.
Using my interest in all aspects of the sports and gambling world to guide me, I now write for Betting.net, compiling operator reviews, bonus reviews, and sharing the tips and tricks across our various sports betting guides. When I’m not at my keyboard, I am an avid rock climber, with an ultimate goal of eventually ascending the Seven Peaks — if I can fit it in between penning the latest bookmaker review, that is!
Basketball Betting Strategies That Work
Betting on basketball can really enhance your enjoyment of the sport. Basketball is a fast-paced game that can change in an instant, making it ideal for betting. The question is: what is the best basketball betting strategy?
This guide will help you put together your own basketball betting strategies. We will look at areas such as budgeting, betting basics and betting guides. It’s everything you need for a successful basketball betting journey.
Why are basketball betting strategies so important?
There are more basketball betting markets than ever. You can bet on moneylines, spreads, total points, winning margins and a multitude of other markets. And then you’ve got to weigh up the different odds available at all of the different betting sites.
In short, going through every market at every betting site makes for a long, confusing and ultimately frustrating journey.
Therefore, regardless of your experience level, it’s important to use betting guides and put together a solid basketball betting strategy that works for you. It will make the whole process of placing bets a lot less stressful and time consuming.
A solid basketball betting strategy will help you focus your efforts on a few specific markets. Making it easier for you to place winning bets and ultimately find profitable betting strategies.
Of course, a basketball betting strategy is a very personal thing, so this guide will help you identify what works for you and help you put together your very own best basketball betting strategy.
Basketball is a hugely unpredictable sport. Upsets happen all the time and games can change in the blink of an eye. That $50 on the Lakers beating the Heat might look like a safe bet, but in reality a win for the Heat wouldn’t come as a complete shock.
Whether you are a complete novice with limited knowledge of basketball or a complete fanatic with an encyclopaedic knowledge of the sport, betting on basketball can be a risky pursuit.
That is why finding your best basketball betting strategy is essential, if you want to make a profit. It will enable you to hone in on the markets that work best for you, it will help you manage your bankroll and it will make your overall betting experience more enjoyable.
Basketball betting strategies: The basics
The first step towards finding your best basketball betting strategy is to ensure you have a solid understanding of the fundamentals of betting. Here are four important things you need to know:
What is basketball betting?
Basketball betting involves placing money on the outcome of a basketball event. This is often the overall outcome of a game, but it can also be specific events during a match-up (for example points totals, quarter scores, spreads etc). Make the correct bets and you win money, fail to do so and you are looking at a loss.
What are basketball betting odds?
Basketball betting odds reflect the perceived likelihood of an event occurring. The longer the odds, the lower the likelihood of the event occurring. Typically, a basketball match will have a short odds favourite and a longer odds underdog.
What basketball markets are there?
Whilst there are an abundance of basketball betting markets, there are a few that attract the most attention from bettors. These popular markets include:
Moneyline: A straight bet on who will win the match.
Spread: A popular betting market that involves the favourite in a game receiving a points handicap. This causes the odds on both teams to become virtually the same.
Totals: Totals markets have increased over the years. Not only can you bet on the total points scored in a game, but you can now break that down into total points scored in a specified half or quarter. Some betting sites even allow you to be on the total points scored by individual players.
Halftime/Fulltime: This requires you to predict who will be winning at halftime and who will be winning at fulltime.
Parlays: Multi game bets that require you to pick the winners of a selection of games. This can either be based on moneylines or spreads. Some sites also allow you to place parlay bets on other markets such as total points.
Overall winner: A bet on the outcome of a competition or tournament.
In-play betting involves placing bets whilst a basketball match is occurring. Whilst betting markets are relatively static before an event starts, In-play markets change rapidly depending on the score and flow of the game. In most cases, in-play markets cover the same areas as pre game markets. But you may occasionally find in-play specific markets like ‘Race to 50’ where you bet on which team will reach a specific points tally first.
Basketball betting strategy; Money management and bonuses
Betting on basketball with real money means that you need to make a few financial considerations. This will ensure that you manage your bankroll correctly and don’t make any mistakes that will cost you money:
Set a budget
The most important consideration of all. Having a budget and sticking to it will ensure that you don’t spend beyond what you are comfortable with. It will also stop you from chasing losses and making knee jerk bets that don’t fit in with your basketball betting strategy.
When you sign up for a betting site, make sure you are aware of which deposit and withdrawal methods are accepted. For a start you need to make sure that your preferred payment method is accepted. But it’s also important to read reviews to find out how reliable payment methods are, how long transactions take to process and whether there are any fees attached.
Your basketball betting strategy can be enhanced by promotions and bonus offers. Free bets, enhanced prices and money back offers all crop up from time to time. Always check out the terms and conditions of any offer before committing to it. Make sure you have the required bankroll to meet the wagering requirements.
Understanding basketball betting strategies
Whilst finding the best basketball betting strategy is down to the individual, there are a few tried and tested strategies that have worked for gamblers over the years:
Two points versus three points
This is a useful strategy if you are betting on competitions where you are not overly familiar with the teams. When researching the teams, look at where on the court they score their points. Teams that rely on three pointers for the majority of their points are far more likely to have off days and go cold. The most successful teams in basketball rely heavily on a consistent stream of two pointers. If a ‘three point’ team is favoured against a ‘two point’ team, that may present a good opportunity to back the underdog.
Road favourites coming off a loss
If a team is still the moneyline favorite, despite suffering a blowout loss in their previous game, it suggests they are a strong side who had a poor result. What’s more, they will be desperate to atone for the defeat. As such, they have an excellent chance of covering the spread. In fact, in the last ten years of the NBA, teams that have lost their previous game, but are favoured on the road, have won over 60% of their games.
Big home underdogs
Another popular basketball betting strategy is to bet on home teams who are 10 point or more underdogs.
Conditions do not play as big a role in basketball as they do in sports like american football, soccer and baseball. However, one condition-related factor that can play a huge part in basketball is home support. Not only can a partisan home crowd spur on the hosts, but it can undermine the confidence of the road team.
It’s also worth considering the fact that many teams are merely concerned with winning games, not by how much they win them by.
It all means that big home underdogs have a great chance of covering the spread. Something that is backed up by statistical evidence from the last few seasons.
Make your picks before checking the odds
Whichever basketball betting strategy you use, research is fundamental to its success. You need to study the teams, the form book and all of the available statistical data. One way you can use that information to inform your betting strategy is to make your picks before you even look at the betting markets.
Confused? Let’s use an example to see how it could work:
The Golden State Warriors are playing the New York Knicks in a road game. You conduct your research and come to the conclusion that the markets should have the Knicks as five point favourites.
You then look at the odds and see that the Knicks are two point favorites.
Based on your research, this means the market is skewed in favour of the Warriors. As such, the sensible option is to bet on the Knicks to beat the spread.
Another advantage of this basketball betting strategy is that it stops your judgement being affected by seeing the odds, making it easier for you to spot the value bets.
Wait until gameday
There is an argument that betting a few days in advance is the best basketball betting strategy. You can often find more advantageous lines at that point, but betting in advance does have a few negative factors. For a start, a lot can happen in the run up to a game – injuries, disciplinary issues, tactical changes can all impact upon starting line ups and, subsequently, betting lines.
Make sure you subscribe to at least two or three reputable basketball news services and regular check news sites. The last thing you want is to place a bet on a team, only to subsequently discover that their star player is missing the game through injury.
Your best basketball betting strategy may not fall perfectly into any of the above. But it’s worth strongly considering themall and perhaps incorporating elements into your chosen basketball betting strategy.
Operators With Great Basketball betting strategies
Key knowledge for putting together a basketball betting strategy
Context is everything when you are putting together your best basketball betting strategy. Whilst the games and the betting markets are the key ingredients, you need to look at the wider picture and be aware of a few other vital factors:
You need to check the gambling laws in your state before betting on basketball. Not only do you need to check that gambling is legal, but also that it is legal online. Some states such as Arkansas and New York permit gambling but not online. Others like Iowa and Colorado permit both on and offline gambling. Meanwhile some states, for example Utah and Alaska, have not legalized gambling. Make sure you check our guides.
Online betting sites should allow you to set responsible gambling parameters. These parameters are designed to ensure you do not gamble more than you are comfortable with. They can relate to deposit limits, stake limits or even time spent on the site. It is strongly recommended that you set up responsible gambling controls as it will help you avoid any significant losses.
More and more of us are betting on the go. Pretty much every online betting site has a mobile app, but some are much better than others. If you are planning on betting whilst on your travels, make sure you read our guides to discover which betting sites offer the best mobile experiences.
Unfortunately, there is no definitive answer to this. There are tried and tested basketball betting strategies (see above), but ultimately this is an individual issue. Read our guides, do your research, set your budgets and formulate the best basketball betting strategy for you.
Should I always back the favourite in a basketball game?
No. Whilst favourites are given favourite status for a reason, upsets are commonplace in basketball. It is often sensible to back the favourite, but factors such as road teams coming off heavy losses or home teams with a +10 or more handicap, can make backing the underdog the smarter move.
Should I bet in-play on basketball?
Basketball games can be topsy turvy, leading to rapid changes in odds. Betting in-play can allow you to take advantage of favourable odds, but it requires fast thinking and a clear mind. It’s best to only bet in-play when you are watching a live stream of a game, that enables you to stay on top of the action and get a feel for how a game is progressing.
What is the best basketball market to bet on?
Again, this is a personal issue, however some markets prove to be a lot more popular than others. Moneylines, spread and total points are three of the most popular, which means that if you’re looking for betting tips you will find them for these markets.
On the flip side, it is worth looking over the more obscure markets, as sometimes you will find more advantageous odds here.
Which is the best basketball team to bet on?
This can change from season to season. The NBA (and other leagues) is built to be competitive. The draft system means that the worst teams in one season, have the chance to pick the best college players before the next season. Whilst some teams like the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers have been consistently strong in recent years, the vast majority of teams vary from season to season.
One pitfall to try and avoid is being swayed towards betting on your favourite team. Having a favourite team can lead to your heart overruling your head when betting. The best way to bet is with an objective mind, free from any favouritism.
Best basketball betting strategy conclusion – put in the effort to reap the rewards
With so much to consider, putting together your best basketball betting strategy can seem a bit overwhelming. However you do it, make sure you stick to these three golden rules:
Do your research: Study the form, read the news and look at the statistics. The more information you have, the better equipped you are to put together your best basketball betting strategy.
Set a budget: This is arguably the most important factor of all. Having a budget is an essential part of all basketball betting strategies. It means you can plan your strategy, bet with amounts you are comfortable with and avoid making any problematic losses.
Read our guides: The range of basketball betting markets varies from site to site. Read our guides to establish which sites offer the best range of basketball markets.
Best Basketball Betting Strategies FAQ
🏀Is betting on basketball legit?
That depends on where you are and your age. Gambling laws change from state to state. Make sure you read our guides to find out if basketball betting is legal in your location.
💸What is the best tip for my basketball betting strategy?
There will be a personal element to this answer, but regardless of your chosen best basketball betting strategy, setting a budget is imperative. This golden rule applies whether you are putting together soccer betting strategies or even looking for a pick three strategy that works.
🏃What is the best in-play basketball betting strategy?