When you bet on basketball, it’s not always about who’s going to win outright. With a little insight and a few different options up your sleeve, you can make use of the way the game works and make good money.
Firstly, make sure to think strategically. Analyze trends, keep your eye on the stats, and be cautious when opposing a team with a winning record. If you can gain enough information about a team, you can see how they perform over both the short and long term, and adjust your actions accordingly.
The types of bets below exist across many different sports as well as basketball, so it helps to familiarize yourself with them regardless of your chosen sport. However, it’s important to learn how the markets operate for each individual sport and spot the trends for maximum return.
For example, betting on football uses many of the same methods you see below, but other strategies also exist that are unique to the game. To compare the two you can see the full guide here.
First Half Moneyline
A lot can change in a basketball match and it’s not all about the end. If you know enough about a team and their past performances, you can tell how likely it is that they would push ahead early on. One thing you can put money on is the leading team at half time, and this is called a First Half Moneyline.
Instead of betting on a flat out win, you can give a team (and yourself) a “double chance”. This often involves three different types. Home Win/Draw, Draw/Away Win and Home Win/Away Win. All three of these options leave you with only one outcome that would result in a loss, instead of two. This is a smart way to cover your bases and allows you to play it a little safer when you’re less sure of the outcome.
Instead of focusing on the score of an individual team, you can place a bet on the total amount scored across the entire match. This is one of the most common bets placed on basketball matches. Also known as an “Over/Under”, the bet is laid out so you choose whether or not the total will exceed or fall short of a particular amount.
First Quarter Total Points
Much like the option above, the winner of this market is determined by the total scored across both teams, except the total is collected at the end of the first quarter instead of the end of the game. Note: Both a moneyline bet and a total points bet can be applied to either quarter or half time periods.
Betting on the handicap is a strong option when one team is the clear favourite. The weaker team effectively starts the game having already scored a certain number of points, meaning a greater challenge (at least on paper) for the team perceived as stronger. This means that if you bet on the weaker team and they lose the game by less than their handicap number, you still win the bet.