We at Betting.co.uk have made it our speciality to demystify anything and everything related to online sports betting. We've put together this guide for every basketball fanatic who's looking to understand how NBA odds are determined and how to find the best ones.
In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at why you should compare betting odds on NBA games. Our team also digs in and explains why the best sports betting odds vary, the most popular odds formats, and other odds-related factors to consider before making bets on NBA games.
Why should I compare betting odds on NBA games at all? Are they really that different from horse racing odds or other sports betting? These are popular questions among new and old bettors. The answer to both questions is--absolutely! Having a love for basketball as a game is a great start if you’re thinking of betting on the sport. But to make your betting efforts worthwhile, you'll need a clear strategy, which includes comparing odds. Basketball is laden with numerous exciting leagues and tournaments. But the NBA has to be the most popular league in the world.
So, why is it necessary for you to compare NBA odds? In the sports betting world, bookmakers use odds to predict the probability of the outcome of an event and highlight your potential wins. The idea is for you to choose the most competitive NBA betting odds on the market. As you know, odds change regularly. So, comparing odds among different bookmakers ensures you get the best deal possible to place your bet and maximise your winning chances.
When setting NBA odds, bookmakers start by creating their betting lines based on the team they believe is more likely to win the match. Is it the underdogs or favourites? From here, they then refine the odds based on how the public thinks the match will go. As more and more punters bet on one side of the line, the bookmaker adjusts their betting lines accordingly.
It's important to note that the size and reputation of the bookmaker play a huge role in how they determine their NBA odds. More established bookies use experience to their advantage and prefer to set the odds themselves based on past match stats and the players involved. After all, they can afford to take risks and not go bankrupt. Smaller operators usually play it safe and tend to follow changes in betting lines to calculate their odds.
The fact that some Irish sportsbooks prefer to set NBA odds themselves while others rely on changes in betting lines means that NBA betting odds will vary between bookies. And that's precisely why you need to compare odds. Also, regardless of the strategy that each bookie uses to determine odds, the goal of sportsbooks is to balance the odds between favourites and underdogs the best way they can. That way, the bookie makes money regardless of who wins the match. It follows that bookies will always factor in a margin into the betting odds known as the overround or vig. And the bookie with the lowest vig is the one you want to work with.
To compare NBA odds effectively, you should know how to read, interpret, and calculate them. You’ll notice that NBA betting odds are displayed in different formats, depending on the sOther factors to consider when comparing odds – leaving no stone unturned
Comparing NBA odds is non-negotiable if you expect a fulfilling betting experience. However, other than odds comparison, there are alternative factors you must be mindful of to make the best wagering decision. You may notice that larger and established bookies tend to offer the best NBA odds. But that doesn't mean you should dismiss new and smaller bookmakers just yet. That's because new bookmakers might offer exciting welcome bonuses or bonus bets in an attempt to attract more punters. And sometimes, taking up these bookies on their offer, despite the relatively poor odds, might prove more fruitful when compared to a site offering seemingly higher odds.
The same applies to promotions and VIP programs offered by up-and-coming betting sites. Some sites may offer poor NBA odds but with a better VIP program when compared to other sites offering better odds. The idea is to consider all these factors and go with the bookie that offers a valuable betting experience all-round sportsbook in question. Don't be alarmed by the differing ways in which the numbers are displayed. Though shown differently, they mean the same thing. The format a sportsbook chooses to go with depends on preference, familiarity, the country in which the platform is based, and the sport in question. Let's unpack the three popular formats of the best sports betting odds types below.
Decimal odds are by far the most common format used by several Irish bookies when presenting their NBA odds. That's because they are the easiest format bettors can use to compare prices between different bookmakers. In a nutshell, decimal odds formats showcase the potential return of a wager, including your initial stake.
To calculate the potential wins from your wager, you simply multiply the amount you wish to wager by the decimal odds availed by the bookie. For example, if you see Lakers with decimal odds of 2.10 and you decide to bet €100, you calculate using the following format:
Odds x Stake = Return (Including your stake)
2.10 x €100 = €210
That means €210 is the amount you’ll receive, including your initial €100 bet. If you wish to ascertain your profit from the wager, simply subtract your €100 wager from the total return leaving you with a profit of €110.
Fractional odds are another format bookies use, although it’s more popular among UK than Irish bookmakers. Plus, most bookies who display fractional odds use them for comparing horse racing and not NBA odds. This way of displaying odds is the least favoured, as it makes it a little difficult for bettors to compare odds against other formats.
But probably the simplest way to interpret fractional odds is to know that the fraction displays how much you'll win in relation to the stake you wager. For instance, if the Boston Celtics have 7/1 winner odds and you bet €100 on that outcome, it means you’ll win €7 for every €1 that you wager plus your initial stake. As such, you calculate your winnings as follows:
(Stake x Numerator/Denominator) + Stake
(€100 x 7/1) + €100 = €800
American odds, also referred to as US odds or moneyline odds, are very popular in America. Some Irish bookies do use American odds to display their NBA odds, and you can easily identify the odds as positive or negative numbers.
Bettors should interpret the negative number as the amount you need to wager to make a €100 profit. On the other hand, a positive number indicates how much you’ll win as profit, should you wager €100. Positive numbers are placed on the underdog, while negative numbers are on the favourite. However, you don't necessarily need to bet the amount equal to the numbers displayed in the odds. You're allowed to bet more or less depending on your preferences and the size of your bankroll. For example; Miami Heat -108 and Golden State Warrior +120 with a €30 bet is calculated as follows:
Miami Heat — (100/negative American odds) x stake
(100/108) x €30 = €27.77 return
Golden State Warrior — Positive American odds x (Stake /100)
120x (€30/100) = €36 return
To get the best value when placing bets, you must calculate the Expected Value or EV for short. It's the simplest way that new bettors can find the best deal after comparing NBA odds. Expected Value is the measure of what a punter can win or lose on each wager placed on the same odds every time. Naturally, a positive EV implies you'll make a profit on your bets in the long term. Calculating expected value is quite simple using the following formula:
(Winnable amount per bet x Winning probability) – (Possible losses per bet x Losing probability)
With this in mind, the higher the EV, the better the value you'll receive on your wager. And you want to bet on bookies that offer odds with positive EVs.
The essence of comparing NBA odds is so that you can maximise the potential wins on every bet you place. However, it renders the entire process ineffective if you compare and place bets using one bookmaker. That’s because no one bookie can consistently provide the best odds on every event over time. The bottom line here is loyalty to one bookie could be your downfall. It hinders you from aligning yourself with bigger and better bookmakers offering competitive odds.
So, what’s the solution? The secret to excelling in sports betting is to open multiple accounts with several bookies. That way, you can compare all the operator's Football betting odds or NBA odds effectively and go with the best deal at all times to capitalise on each bet for each sport. Plus, you’ll get the maximum win for your wager and beef up your bankroll. Or, you can visit an odds comparison site to select the bookie offering the best NBA odds.
Live betting or in-play betting on basketball games is a concept that’s fast becoming popular in Ireland and the world over. As you can imagine, the excitement goes up a notch if you're betting on live NBA games with all your star players working to put another game in the bag. But as exciting as this concept is, live betting on a basketball game is trickier than betting before the game starts. That's because the NBA odds, unlike golf betting odds, move much quicker during live matches.
Try and compare the NBA odds when they have stabilised a little, although such opportunities last minutes, if not seconds. The challenge is just as trying when searching for stable UFC odds for tonight during the fight. A good time to compare odds during a live basketball game is when the clock stops after the ball goes out of bounds. You can also take the time to quickly compare odds when the referee calls out a foul. When a player is shooting free throws is also another opportunity to compare odds. And so is when the referee calls a timeout. As you probably know, NBA teams have a total of six full-time outs and one twenty-second timeout per half. You can use these momentary pauses to compare odds.
While watching a basketball game is undoubtedly exciting, betting on the sport is even more rewarding, especially if you win consistently. To increase your chances of winning, it’s important to know how to compare NBA odds. Different bookies offer varying NBA betting odds to bettors. But the goal is to select the best NBA odds to maximise your winning chances. We strongly advise against pledging allegiance with just one site as it stifles your maximum winning chances. Aside from comparing odds, also check if the sportsbook offers other rewarding bonuses or promos. That’s the only way you can guarantee an all-inclusive betting experience.
Having a love for the game of basketball is well and good. But when it comes to betting on the game, it means your money is on the line. And betting on such prestigious matches without comparing NBA odds might short-change your winning chances, as we explain in our guides at Betting.co.uk.
Any avid basketball betting fan will tell you that wagering on the sport isn't a walk in the park. As such, it helps to have all the necessary information before wagering to ensure you're getting the best deal from the bookie in the long run. While odds comparison is an integral part of sports betting, there are other factors you must consider before making your decision, as outlined here.
With more and more bookies becoming progressive, bettors can now place bets during a live match. The dynamics are a little different from placing a bet before the game starts. That's because the odds move very quickly, depending on how many minutes remain in the game. Our guides at Betting.co.uk point out the best times to make your move.