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Expat’s Guide on How to Bet on Basketball

April 22, 2020 3375 0
Expat’s Guide on How to Bet on Basketball

Interested in learning about how to bet in basketball?

Basketball is considered one of the most famous and loved sports in the world. The game has produced numerous international basketball players that are adored by most people who love basketball. The National Basketball Association features players from across the globe like Luka Doncic from Slovenia, Pascal Siakam from Cameroon, and Ben Simmons from Australia. The development and prevalence in the international countries of retired players like Dirk Nowitzki and Yao Ming from China still have a considerable following.

Reading Basketball Betting Lines

Before placing your bet on basketball, you must be able to learn how to read basketball betting lines. 

NBA betting lines and NCAA betting lines can be simple, but you need to understand the plus-minus system. The standard NCAA basketball lines and NBA betting lines will have a number attached to each team, which is either a plus or a minus.

If the attached number is a plus (+), then at the end of the game, the points are added to the end score. The points will determine the winner of the wager. For example, an NBA betting line Team A with a +5 and -5 for Team B that has an end score of 99 to 100 in favor of Team B. The bet placed on Team A would still triumph because they have a +5 point head start.

It is also imperative to always know that the favored team in the game must make the number of points given to the underdog team (the spread) when making line bets. The underdog team, on the other hand, must lose by not less than the range. Basketball lines will have a refund in the case of a draw for NCAA or NBA.

The odds for line bets can change based on occurring injuries and talks when almost game time. One way on how to bet on basketball is to know your betting slip will not change whatever line you placed your bet.

Best Bets in NBA

Best bets in the NBA are usually in the form of lines, overs/unders, and handicap. The betting strategy initiates when you bet on the game.

Before you place your bet on handicaps and lines, it is better to analyze first on how teams performed in their recent games. You must also consider looking at their records for injury lists and how their players recuperate from the injury.

You may also consider the over and under bets as one of the best bets in the NBA. In over and under bets, you will make your forecast whether the teams will have a collective number of points scored over or under an amount assigned by the sportsbook.

Best Bets in College Basketball

You can expect a lack of consistency with their games as compared to the more significant professional leagues, which makes college basketball betting a lot more effective.

Young players have an objective of proving themselves and scouts that they can perform better with their game. In this case, you should carefully evaluate all the team’s players’ strengths and weaknesses. Hot streaks are not consistent also, so it is best to study the whole team before placing a bet on them.

Probabilities Computation

Examining implied probabilities on NBA betting lines and college basketball betting lines is a requirement in basketball betting strategy to make sure you will receive the most out of your wagers.

There are specific implied probabilities that you can compute to help you in placing your bets on NBA betting lines and college basketball betting lines. 

The implied probability changes your betting odds to a percentage that will depend on the sportsbook margin of a specific team winning.

If the NBA betting lines or college basketball betting lines is higher than the sportsbook implied probability, then you will have a better chance on your hands. 

Kinds of Available Bets

The most popular available bets are point spread bets and win/loss moneyline bets. Some available bets are halftime lines, total points bets, and quarter lines for each section of the game.

Basketball is a fast-paced sport and has quick shifts within the game that makes it a good sport for live betting, which is imperative to know how to bet on basketball.

Moneylines for Basketball Betting

bet on basketball

In basketball betting, you need to place your bet on a particular college or NBA basketball odds.

There are three different formats for the college or NBA basketball odds: Fractional, Decimal, and American. These three basketball odds can give you the same chance to place your wager within different systems.

Basketball Lines

The sportsbook handicaps the game by generating a distinction that tries to equalize both teams. The difference is called the line. Both NCAA basketball betting lines and NBA betting lines are well-known to most bettors, which is available to almost every basketball game.

Types of Basketball Bets

Basketball games are available throughout the year. Basketball betting does not have any shortages, and bettors can handicap a game. Here are some of the types of bets that will guide you on how to bet on basketball.

Point Spreads

Most sports use money line betting as the standard type of betting, while in basketball, a point spread is the most common wager. Both teams can have a -110 (bet $110 and win $100) bet, and the difference between the two teams is handicap points.


Bookmakers will place a total number of points combined for the teams to score in a game, then the bettors will place their bets on whether the total amount of points the teams scored will be over or under the total set. The overall score also includes the overtime regulation score.

Money Lines

When bettors place their bets on money lines, the difference between the two teams will show the price of each team. If the bettors are confident that their team will win, they can get a better price than taking the points.


A parlay betting allows bettors to choose two or more basketball sides. All sides that the bettor selected must win to win the bet. The more legs (sides) that the bettor selects to the parlay, the higher the payout will be if the legs all win. If the bettors are confident with the games they chose, they can opt to parlay their choices for a much bigger payout than they are expecting for each game individually. Bettors must be careful in choosing because the risk of considering all legs should win. It also increases as the payout also increases, and this is one way on how to bet on basketball.


Proposition basketball bets have a wide range of varieties of bets on a specific player or team statistics and in-game circumstances. Bettors can go for over/under on how many assists or rebounds a particular player will perform, or each team will have five turnovers or less in the first quarter. Some propositions are for amusement value more than anything else.


A teaser bet is like a parlay bet with just one difference – if you have multiple individual chances, you will have to win every wager on the card. You will lose the entire card if you lose just one bet. But basketball teaser bets will only work with the totals and point spreads by a set number of points in the bettor’s favor. 


A basketball pleaser bet is similar to a teaser bet, and the only difference is that the lines all move against you, which is more challenging and difficult for you to win your bets, and the payouts are much better. You must also win every single bet you placed on your pleaser for you to win the wager. 

Notable Bets in Basketball History

Floyd, “The Money” Mayweather, placed a bet on Miami Heat to beat the Indiana Pacers with a whopping USD 5.9 million in June 2013. The professional boxer collected a near USD 6.5 million profit. The wagers went into nine separate sportsbooks because no bookmakers wanted to take that huge of a bet.

Mayweather earned his titles over four different weight divisions and is famous for being a sportsman in the world. 

He made another $200,000 profit when he sided with the Golden State Warriors to win the Western Conference finals game three against the Houston Rockets. The Warriors had a 35 point lead against the Rockets, making Mayweather very glad about the game.

Betting on Basketball

With all of these types of basketball bets operating in the industry, doesn’t mean you have to try them all out at the same time. You have to choose wisely which type of betting will give you an advantage on how to bet on basketball. Do not confuse yourself and ruin your strategy when it is working already. 

Always do extensive research first about the game, the teams, players, their strengths and weaknesses, and the overall history.

There are no secrets in special odds by using intricate styles of bets or by mixing the types of bets you make. Just make it simple, as long as you have value in picking winners, you will be profitable in this field.


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