The Basics
4 Min
how to bet

Of all the major American sports leagues, the NBA is arguably the most predictable. With each team playing 82 regular season games, clear patterns and form lines emerge over the course of the season which savvy bettors can capitalise on if they know what to look for. Thankfully the team here at Bet Basics is here to provide you with an assist to help your NBA wagers become a slam dunk.


Our simple five-step guide to betting on the NBA is designed help you cash in by making smarter (and winning) bets. The alley to your oop, if you will!



The NBA is one of the most thoroughly covered sports leagues on the planet, meaning there’s no shortage of news, analysis and statistics readily available online for bettors to use to their advantage. Here’s a few basics to out look for:

  • Check the standings and recent results to get an overview of each team’s win/loss record, what their current form is like, the score-lines from recent games and how teams have performed against their opponents in recent matchups.
  • Check the injury report to see how it might affect the games you want to bet on. With NBA starting line-ups consisting of only five players from each team, having one player unavailable because of injury could significantly impact the outcome of the game.
  • Check for scheduling advantages to see if a team might be fatigued from playing on back-to-back nights or a long stretch of games on the road.

  • Check out our Bet Basics expert picks and predictions for the NBA. We bury our heads in all the latest NBA news while studying scores, stats and trends across the league, so you don’t have to! Listen to the advice of our experts will help you make smart NBA wagers on any given night.

For a more extensive and detailed list of helpful tips and strategies for placing a winning bet on the NBA game, click here.



It’s not uncommon for top sportsbooks to offer hundreds of different bet types on NBA games, but for the purpose of this guide, we’ll focus on some of the more popular ones (click the links below for more info on each bet type):

Moneyline - The most straightforward type of NBA bet, which simply involves choosing which team you think will win the game.

Spread - One of the most popular types of NBA bets where the sportsbook assigns a points handicap as a means to encourage equal bets on the favorite and underdog.

Totals - Involves bettors trying to predict whether the total combined number of points scored in the game will be over or under the mark set by the sportsbook.

Props - Bet on more specific elements within the game, such as whether how many points, assists or rebounds a particular player will have.

Live Betting - Place bets after tip-off while live action is taking place.

Parlay - Bettors can include a mix of bets from a variety of NBA on a single bet slip to multiply their odds.

Futures - Longer term bets made before or during the season on certain events such as the NBA Finals winner or NBA MVP.




Understanding how sportsbooks display the odds for each of these bet types is a key ingredient to wagering wisely and maximising the value of the NBA bets you place. Thankfully, the team here at Bet Basics have put together a step-by-step guide explaining how to read and interpret NBA betting odds.



Now you’re aware of how odds are displayed, it’s worth shopping around to find the best odds for the NBA bet you’re looking to make. Our NBA odds page is a great place to get started.


Finding the best available odds is a key step to becoming a profitable NBA bettor. The differences between the odds offered by various sportsbooks may seem marginal, but ensuring you’re regularly getting the best value on any given betting market adds up over time.


Having active accounts with multiple sportsbooks such as BetMGM, FanDuel, DraftKings, Caesars, PointsBet and Bet365 also makes this process simpler as you’re able to immediately place your bet with whatever sportsbook is offering the best option. Check out our Bet Basics list of 100% licensed and regulated legal sportsbooks to find the one that’s most suitable for you.


Another way to increase your winnings when betting on the NBA is to take advantage of special promotions offered by sportsbooks such as bonus bets, risk free bets, bet matches and odds boosts. The team here at Bet Basics offers exclusive bonuses and promotions by with many top sportsbooks. Click here to check out some of our best offers.



Betting on the NBA is supposed to be a fun and exciting experience, and being sensible with how you manage your bankroll for NBA wagers helps ensure this is the case. 


With NBA games coming thick and fast over the course of the season, it’s easy to get caught up in the action and place bets without adhering to a budget, or even worse, start chasing losses when bets don’t got your way.


Stake your NBA wagers relative to the level of confidence you have in a particular bet and make use of tools sportsbooks offer such as setting up a deposit limit to ensure you don’t go over budget.



The most important piece of advice the team at Bet Basics can give anyone wagering on the NBA is to make sure you enjoy yourself! Having a bet is a great way to make an NBA game even more exciting while also giving you an opportunity to add some dollars to your bank account. That sounds like a pretty good recipe for a Greta time as far as we’re concerned!


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