NBA Betting Guide
NBA is hugely popular throughout Canada with many sports fans following the action each and every week.
Table of Content:
Betting on the NBA Regular Season
The NBA regular season fixtures keep Canadian sports fans entertained and they provide endless drama and excitement on an almost daily basis. The season gets underway in mid-October and games are staged in both the USA and Canada throughout the Christmas and New Year period. It continues throughout the early part of the year with the regular season usually finishing at the end of March/Start of April. Throughout this period, there are betting markets available on each and every game.
There are 30 teams in the league, 29 from the USA and one from Canada (Toronto Raptors). These sides are split into Eastern and Western Conferences and these are broken down further into three separate divisions, each containing five NBA teams. Each team is contractually obliged to fulfil 82 fixtures across the regular season and these are often staged just 2-3 days apart. Some teams will be required to play 5-6 consecutive road games which often leads to bettors opposing them, this is due to the possibility of exhaustion and fatigue creeping in. Home teams are usually heavily favoured in the betting markets and spread betting on the hosts remains extremely popular. This involves giving the home side a handicap (-7.5 for example) requiring them to win by eight clear points.
30 of the 82 games will be against teams in the other conference (Western or Eastern), competing against them home and away. Travel is always something to consider when placing NBA wagers during the regular season. Always pay careful attention to a side’s schedule and spotting the possibility of weariness can be a great way to find value.
Owing to such a hectic schedule, online bookmakers in Canada will often only provide odds for fixtures taking place within the next 24/48 hours. Although it is possible to wager on each team to win their respective conference at any point during the regular season, betting on individual matches weeks in advance, is not always possible. If a key player picks up an injury on a Sunday and his side are also playing on Tuesday, this will have a detrimental effect on the betting markets and this is something the bookmakers will need to take into consideration when pricing the game up.
Betting on the NBA has also gained popularity over the past few years with plenty of online sportsbooks offering competitive lines on every single match.
There may only one Canadian side competing, but many sports fans in Canada are glued to the action each week and those who enjoy watching also enjoy placing a wager on the action. Plenty of sports fans tune in to catch the highlights each week and enjoy watching all 30 teams in action.
It’s an incredibly competitive sport with a number of hugely recognizable faces and online sportsbooks have noted an ever increasing interest in NBA Betting throughout Canada. There are plenty of markets and betting opportunities and it’s easy to get started.
Betting on the NBA Play-Offs
Many NBA fans in Canada enjoy wagering throughout the regular season, although the excitement is ramped up a notch when the NBA Play-Offs get underway. 16 teams will take part in the end-of-season event and betting markets are available at the beginning of the season with odds on each side to make the cut. The divisional winners will automatically progress and they will be joined by the best of the rest (five sides who have the best records despite not winning their conference)
All of the usual markets are available for each of the play-off matches with money-line, points spread and points total all available with online bookmakers in Canada. At the beginning of the play-offs, series winner markets will become available allowing bettors to predict which side will come out on top. Correct Score betting for the series is also another popular way of wagering and each round is played in a best of seven format.
Many online bookmakers will also stream NBA Play-Off matches with live betting on these games extremely popular due to the possibility of sudden momentum changes.
NBA Finals Odds by Sports Interaction:
NBA Finals Betting
The Play-Offs will eventually whittle down 16 teams to just two. The pair will compete in the NBA Finals and this is a huge betting event in Canada. All bookmakers will offer hundreds of markets on this series of games with all of the usual odds placed alongside the possibility of betting on a range of props. These usually involve predicting a particular player’s performance or correctly predicting how many points a team will score during each period of the game.
Look out for the special offers, bonuses and promotions in conjunction with the NBA Play-Offs finals. Most online Canadian bookmakers will launch these once the two participants have been decided.
Odds & Markets
The first market NBA bettors will typically consider is the Money Line. Similar to NHL, this is simply picking one of the two sides to win the match. Although there is a bias towards the home side, upsets do regularly happen in the NBA. There are often short prices quoted for the hosts, so wagering on an away win can be profitable if the visitors can secure an unlikely victory.
The Odds will be displayed in the US Money Line format, for example – The Toronto Raptors could be -179 with their opponents priced at +170. The Raptors are clearly the favourites here as they are the home side.
The closer together the two numbers on the money line, the more competitive the match is expected to be. For example +106 and -123 suggests the online sportsbook are struggling to separate the two sides. However, if Team A are -500 with Team B +415, it’s expected to be an easy victory for Team A.
With Odds of +415, it seems unlikely that Team B will win. However a $100 wager will return $415 if they are successfully victorious.
The money line is a popular market and the easiest to understand, but there are plenty of other markets available for each match.
Over/Under Points Spread
Another very popular market is the Over & Under markets. This requires bettors to correctly predict whether it will be a high or low scoring game.
The bar is usually set at 219, but this can differ depending on team’s recent form. If there are two historically low scoring sides competing, it is likely to be lowered, but is rarely lower than 200. The lines are usually set at -110 for both Over & Under.
If you wagered Under 219 and the match ended 108-95, you could collect. However, if the final score is 122-103, your bet would be a losing one.
Similar to NHL betting, this is giving either side a handicap for the match. This is a hugely popular market amongst Canadian bettors.
For example – Team A face Team B with the hosts overwhelming favourites for a victory. -7.5 Handicap Spread will be available for Team A whilst +7.5 is available on Team B.
You would wager -7.5 handicap if you believed that Team A will win by an 8 point margin or greater. If you take 7.5 from their total points and they are still victorious, your bet would win.
+7.5 on Team B would suggest that they will keep it close and won’t be beaten easily. If the match ended 103-99, this bet would win. 99+7.5 = 106.5 which would put them in a winning position.
Both the Handicap Spread bet and Over/Under can keep an interest until the very end of the match with late drama a regular occurrence in NBA matches.
Team to Score the first basket
Fairly self-explanatory. Which team will score the first basket of the game? There are only two options in this market with the home side usually favoured.
Individual Quarter Betting
Instead of wagering on the match as a whole, some players like to bet on the individual quarters. If one team makes a regular habit of starting quickly but rarely sees it out, wagering on them to win the first quarter is a possibility. This is called the First Quarter Moneyline.
Spreads (usually -2.0) are also available on individual quarters with the majority of online sportsbooks. William Hill and 5dimes are two firms who definitely offer this service.
If the Moneyline doesn’t offer much value and the handicap spreads aren’t enticing, some bettors like to use the double result market. This is simply predicting one side to be winning at both half time and full time.
There is also the option for Tie/Result or Result/Tie.
You can also wager on the last team to score in each quarter or the total number of points in each quarter. There are individual team markets available for example ‘Toronto Raptors over 108 points’.
In all sports betting, it’s imperative to do your research and know your history of the league and teams within it.
Injury news can be key to placing a successful wager. If several high profile players are absent or ill, a team’s performance is likely to drop and wagering on the opposition on the spread markets could be a possibility.
Some teams are led by attack minded coaches and it’s often fruitful to back the Overs markets. Other coaches can be drafted in to tighten up sides defences and this could work in favour of the Unders market.
In Play betting is increasingly popular in Canada and many bettors are waiting for the first quarter to start before deciding on their bets. This can be profitable with viewers being able to get an idea of the speed of the play and the tactics employed by both sides.
Other Ways to Bet
Accumulators are an extremely popular way of wagering on the NBA. With a number of matches taking place on the same day, this can be an enjoyable way to keep across all of the action.
Many online sportsbooks such as William Hill and Sports Interaction will offer enhanced trebles or accumulators on these games. This will often involve three or four matches and a slight increase on the lines. For example Golden State Warriors, Toronto Raptors and Portland Trail Blazers all to win – enhanced from +229 to +333. This is an extremely enticing offer and many bettors take advantage of the increased odds.
Futures – Most online sportsbooks will have Championship winner priced up and markets for Eastern & Western conference winners. These will also be available once the season has commenced, but many bettors prefer to wager on these markets pre-season. Accumulators are extremely popular on the NBA Futures markets.
The prices are usually much bigger on the NBA Futures market and can help fans in Canada keep an interest across the whole season. Many fans like to wager on their own side, but savvy sports fans will avoid any such bias.
The NBA Season
The regular season usually runs from the beginning of October until the middle of April with games taking place throughout the Christmas period.
The conclusion of the regular campaign will be followed swiftly by the play-offs which last for around 6 weeks. The finals take place throughout June.
The sides are split into Western and Eastern Conferences with these divided into three further divisions.
The top eight sides in each conference will progress into the play-offs where they will be drawn against one another to compete in a best-of-7 series. One side will host games 1,2,5 and 7 with the opposition hosting 3,4 and 6. This is further whittled down in Conference Semi-Finals and Conference Finals before there are just two sides left in the competition.
The NBA Finals are often played in the best of 7 series to decide the overall winner for the season.
Canadian bettors often like to place wagers on which two sides will make the NBA Finals with big returns available if correctly selected.
It is advisable to check stats and recent performances before placing wagers on any NBA matches. Some sides don’t travel well and others tend to score the first basket of the match. If sides finish particularly strongly, explore markets on the 4th quarter.
There are many sides with a great history in the competition and many head to head records to check.
Watch as many NBA games as possible throughout the season and take notes on performances, stand-out players and tactics.
It pays to look beyond the money line when placing NBA wagers. Accumulators are tempting and can lead to huge returns, but sometimes wagering a larger amount on a single selection can lead to more profit.
Look for sides who are improving and working well under a new coach or a side whose key players are returning from injury. Confidence plays a huge part of the game and if a start are starting to show improvements, they may be worth backing on the spreads.
NBA betting continues to grow in popularity throughout Canada and many fans enjoy placing weekly wagers on all of the action. It’s easy to get started with NBA Betting and there are more markets available than ever before. Most online sportsbooks offer enticing welcome bonuses with a free bets and bonuses which can be used on the NBA.