The National Basketball Association in North America is one of the largest basketball leagues in the world. It comprises of 30 basketball teams – 29 from the US and 1 from Canada. With over 20 million people watching the competitions in North America alone, this is one of the most popular sports leagues in existence. Just in 2017, 20.7 million viewers from the US tuned in to watch the series finals.
With such a high viewership also comes a great interest in betting on which team will triumph. In response to its popularity, there are plenty of high-quality sports betting websites that allow you to place bets on the available matches. In this article, we will cover all important aspects of NBA betting sites.
How to Pick a Good NBA Betting Website
When it comes down to actually picking a particular website, you will find that there is a wide variety of sportsbooks to choose from. Naturally, when presented with this much choice, punters may find themselves confused
Most Common Types of NBA Bets
When you register at an online sportsbook you will likely want to know what kind of bets you will find. Naturally, each website features its own betting options but there are certain bet types that come up more often than not. Below, you will find the most common bets that you will be able to place on NBA matches.
Spread bets are the more popular type that you will find on any given gambling website. Punters will be asked to place an amount of money on how a particular team will perform. For example, a spread bet will look something like this:
Boston Celtics: +1.5
Philadelphia 76ers: -1.5
This might look confusing at first glance, but once you understand how it works, you will never have troubles with it ever again. According to this sheet, the 76ers are favoured to win by 1.5 points or, in other words, that the Celtics are expected to lose by 1.5 points. To win this bet the 76ers have to win by at least 2 points or more, regardless if it is 6, 20, or 100 points. However, if they win by 1 points or less, then you lose the bet.
Since the Celtics are expected to lose, they do not have to win the game for you to win a 76ers bet. Instead, all they have to do is lose by less than 1.5 points. Even if they win the game, you will still win the wager.
Basically, a spread bet is a wager on which team will perform better than expected. It is a simple concept to understand and punters should quickly become familiar with how it works since this is the most common bet at sportsbooks.
Moneyline bets are somewhat simpler to understand and this is why they are preferred by a user base of the online sports betting community. If you placed a wager on the winning team, you also win. However, since there is almost always a clear favourite, the betting operators cannot change the spread like in the bet explained above, simply because there is none. Instead, they alter the winning ratio for each team. The more a team is expected to win, the less money do you stand to make. While the more a team is expected to lose, the more favourable the payout ratios will be.
A moneyline bet looks something like this:
Boston Celtics: 2.05
Philadelphia 76ers: 1.83
Over and Under Bets
Over and under bets are also widely available at online sportsbooks. When placing this bet, it does not matter which team will win or lose, just how many points they will score. This wager is particularly important for those who know how the teams in question play regularly. If you expect to see more defensive and conservative plays, you may just as well place a bet on under, whereas more aggressive gameplay will warrant a wager on over. In terms of payout, it is up to the sportsbooks to determine how much a winning bet will net you.
Proposition bets are different than other wagers in the sense that they do not force to choose between two particular outcomes. Rather you will get to decide what you want to bet on and on which match it can happen. For example, you are certain that a player will score X number of 3-pointers in a game, then you might want to place a proposition bet covering that scenario. Similarly, you may place a wager that a particular team will score a certain amount of points. The only limit to what you can bet on is whether or not the sportsbook is equipped to calculate the odds and accept the bet.
Proposition bets make for excellent side bets and can often net you a decent sum of money should you prove right. However, they often come with high improbability so we do not recommend that you place too much money on them, as anything can happen.
Futures bets can be quite profitable and they tend to remain on the safe side of the risk spectrum since team performance can quite easily be measured nowadays. Generally, the sooner you place the bet, the better odds you will be given.
Futures bets often involve betting on a certain team winning their division, their conference or even the championship. Of course, you will have many more events to pick from at any given sportsbook and you should check them out for more details.
NBA Odds Types
It goes without saying that before you actually start placing bets, you should be able to understand what you are looking at. As is often the case, sportsbooks do a poor job in explaining how odds work, let alone what the difference odds types convey. For your convenience, we have compiled a list of the three most popular odds types with more than enough explanation to get you started.
Fractional odds are quite popular among UK and Irish sportsbook operators. They are presented with a slash or a hyphen, for example, 5/1 or 5-1 and spoken as “five to one”. Since they are quite simple to grasp, they have become the preferred odds type for many punters and can be found at any sportsbook online.
Basically, when you place a bet with 5/1 odds, you will win £5 for every £1 that you wager. More specifically, you wager £100 on a 5/1 bet. If you win, you will get receive £500 in profit, as well as, the original sum of your bet, in this case, £100. In the end, you will have £600 in your bankroll.
Decimal odds are often seen on the European continent, as well as in some former British colonies, such as Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. A bet with decimal odds will look something like this:
Just from looking at the numbers you can tell which team is expected to win. Moreover, these numbers also tell us how much of a profit you can make for every unit of currency wagered. For example, a wager of £5 with 2.00 decimal odds will give you a total return of £10. Unlike fractional odds, decimal odds also include your original stake in the total return. So for the bet placed above, you will receive a total of £5 of profit, with £5 being your original stake.
American odds are quite different from the other two types since you will not have to do any multiplications. Instead, they come in two distinct forms. The team favoured to win will be indicated by a minus (-), while the underdog will be accompanied by a plus (+). Basically, it looks something like this:
The Pacers bet indicated how much money you will win if you stake £100, whereas the Cavaliers bet shows how much you would have to wager to win £100. Moreover, these numbers indicate the profit alone. So if you stake £100 on the Pacers, you will win £300, bringing your total bankroll to £400.
Bonuses and Incentives
It is common in the online gambling industry that the individual sites offer their own specific promotions and bonuses to entice players to join. This practice has been around for decades now and it is unlikely to change. Sportsbooks also follow this principle and you will be able to benefit from a variety of offers when you join a website. Below, you will find the most common promotion types that NBA betting sites offer.
Free Bets are mostly self-explanatory – you are given the chance to place a bet at no cost to yourself. These are an excellent way to start at an online sportsbook and see how it operates. In the best case scenario, you win some cash, while in the worst, you lose the bet but your bankroll is still intact.
Of course, it does not come without any strings attached. The sportsbook will outline the specific terms of the promotion. You will likely have to place a bet at certain odds and any winnings from the wager will be subject to a turnover requirement. What this means is that you will have to place a certain amount in bets before you are allowed to withdraw your winnings.
Another popular promotion type is the refunding of lost bets. Basically, the sportsbook will go easy on you and allow you to reclaim part of a lost bet, thus helping you mitigate the loss. However, much like with the free bets that we mentioned above, you will be required to abide by certain rules and conditions.
The refunded sum will likely come with a turnover requirement and you will have to meet it within a specific time frame. While some may scoff at these conditions, you should consider that the sportsbook is giving you the chance to recoup part of the lost sum, which in itself is hardly a bad thing.
Deposit bonuses are not as high profile in the sports betting scene as in the online casino industry, but they can still provide you with great value if you choose to take advantage of them. The way they work is quite simple, whenever you top up your balance, the sportsbook will match your deposit up to a certain sum, granting you extra cash to play with.
The bonus money will have to be wagered a certain number of times before you are allowed to withdraw it and you will have to use on bets with certain odds. This is a great way to win some extra cash and if you can properly predict match you will receive an excellent boost to your bankroll.
As is the case with any online service, you cannot use physical cash to deposit to your online bankroll. Rather, you will have to make use of an online payment solution, many of which are supported by gambling websites. In an attempt to accommodate as many users as possible, sportsbooks have started accepting payment by a wide variety of online payment services.
While most payment methods generally accomplish the same task, there are some stark differences between them and some may be less suited to you than others. Below, we will cover the more popular types and mention several of the more used services as far as online gambling is concerned.
Credit cards are one of the most common payment methods that people use to fund their sportsbook bankroll. This deposit method offers a lot of convenience, allowing you to immediately top up your balance and start placing bets on your favourite NBA teams.
Credit cards are extremely easy to use and also highly accessible since practically every bank offers them. Deposits made via this payment method clear within a few seconds, while withdrawals take up to a maximum of 5 business days. Generally, sportsbooks accept Visa and MasterCard, but there are some websites that also support payment via Discover or Diners Club.
Another excellent payment service that you can utilise is an eWallet. This type of payment method lets you store and transact money on the Internet and is similar to a bank account. Online gamblers have become quite fond of eWallets over the years due to their innate convenience and ease of use. Deposits made with an eWallet go through in a matter of seconds, while withdrawals can be processed in just a few hours.
The withdrawal speeds of eWallet services are considered to be the fastest in the online gambling industry and that is one reason why punters love them so much. The most popular eWallets in the online gambling community are Skrill and Neteller, with ecoPayz having a substantial user base, as well.
Online banking is also on the rise and many gambling websites have started to support this payment method. Using this method, punters will be guaranteed high levels of security, as well as, quick transactions. Deposits generally clear immediately, but withdrawals can take up to several business days to process. Where online banking falls short is in the cost of the service.
Often you will notice that online banking will feature higher fees in comparison to other payment solutions which are cheaper or completely free. Still, this payment method is not without virtue and we highly encourage you to try it out. Popular online banking services include Trustly, InstaDebit and others.
Prepaid cards are another excellent way to top up your sportsbook balance. A prepaid solution is ideal for those who do not want to submit their credit card information or are not ready to commit to a particular service. Using a prepaid card comes with a lot of advantages that some punters will be happy to benefit from. For example, anonymity is guaranteed as you will never be asked to reveal any of your banking or personal information when paying with a prepaid.
Additionally, you will be happy to know that deposits made with a prepaid card are processed in seconds. However, due to their very nature, prepaid cards cannot be used to withdraw winnings. Those who wish to cash in will have to resort to a different payment method, such as a bank transfer. Paysafecard has become the prefered service online and practically every gambling website supports it.