Basketball is still in full swing, and it means that plenty of people are looking at betting on the big games that they see on TV. You need to make sure that you are looking at how to get in the action without getting burned. There’s no guarantee that you’re going to automatically win every single bet that you place but you can learn how to bet in a way that maximizes your chances of winning.
If you’re a complete sports betting newbie, you might wonder how the sportsbooks actually make their money. You see, they actually collect a commission on losing bets. The most common odds will be 11 to 10. So this means that if you really want to win $100, you’re actually going to be risking $110. If you place a bet on the Lakers to win, you collect $210. However, if you lose the bet you lose the entire $110 that you had to put up. Notice that when you win, your original stake is returned to you, including the “extra” piece.
The sportsbook doesn’t really care who wins and loses, because they’re making a commission from all of the losing bets. They want to try to balance the action between two teams, which is why they introduce a line or a spread. It makes the contest equally attractive for both sides.
Basketball works on the money line as well, which is just a bet that’s placed without the point spread approach. You’re essentially just betting on the team of your choice to win “straight up”. You have to risk more to bet on the favorite to win, which in turn makes you win less. However, if you want to go for the underdog, then you bet a lot less to win more.
A quick example would be Celtics vs. Hawks, with the Celtics being the favorite. A money line could be:
So if you wanted to go for the Hawks, you would put up $100 to win 180. Not too bad, but you really need to make sure that the Hawks have a good chance of winning!
There are other type of bets to be found in the world of basketball betting.
As we mentioned before, there’s the straight bet — win/lose, team of your choice. However, there’s also the totals – over/under. You can bet the over or the under for the game total score. You add the scores of both teams to get the final number. So when you bet the “under”, you are betting that the score will be under the total. When you bet the “over”, you’re betting the score will be higher than the total. Using the Celtics v. Hawks example from earlier, you might find that Celtics hit 120 and the Hawks got 110. The total of the game is 230. If you bet over and the score was more than 230, you win. If you bet under and the score was less than 230, then you win in that case.
A tie is considered to be a push, for the record.
Basketball betting isn’t too difficult, but you will need to do your research. It can really be hard to be profitable in basketball but that doesn’t keep people from betting on all of the games they love! Good luck.