NBA Odds

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NBA Odds Explained

NBA Odds

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is the go-to league for many sports handicappers in the USA. It offers a match schedule full of fast-paced, intense matches that are responsible for sustaining one of the country’s biggest betting communities. If you want to join this elite community and have a slice of the gambling pie, you need to understand NBA odds.

NBA Odds overview

Handicappers can make several types of bets for NBA games.  Here’s how to read NBA odds that accompany them.

NBA Moneyline Odds

Moneyline bets are wagers on a game’s winner. When two teams face each other, the bettor predicts which team will win and backs them up with their money.

Moneyline odds are the most common in the USA. They are usually based on $100 and can either be positive or negative. A positive odd represents the underdog. It shows the potential profits of a $100 wager. On the other hand, a negative odd represents the favorite team. It shows how much money one needs to wager to make $100 profits.

If we have the Brooklyn Nets facing Miami Heat in an NBA game:

Brooklyn Nets


Miami Heat


$100 on Miami heat will give you a payout of $230 ($130 winnings + initial bet amount). As for the nets, you need a bet of $120 to make $100 from the wager.

NBA Point Spreads

The point spread is a wager on the point difference between two teams at the end of the game. The oddsmaker picks a spread that represents;

  • How many points the favorite needs to win by
  • How many points the underdog must not lose by more than

Brooklyn Nets



Miami Heat



The odds on the right column are moneyline odds that determine how much you’ll win if the team you bet on covers the spread.


NBA totals are wagers on the total points scored in an NBA game. Like in point spread odds, the sportsbook sets the line.

Over 200.5: +110

Under200.5: -110

What do the NBA Odds for Today Mean?

Some online resources collect the best NBA betting odds for upcoming matches. There, you can find NBA odds for today from different sportsbooks. These are betting odds belonging to games scheduled for today. They will often be accompanied by several useful metrics like;

  • Bet Percentage (%) shows bettors which side of the line is getting what action. The metric displays the percentage of the total betting volume on either side of a betting line.
  • Money percentage (%) shows what fraction of the total money wagered is on either side of the betting line. Figures are displayed in percentage (%).
  • Sharp: The sharp shows where the sharpest bettors are putting their money.   

How to get the best NBA odds?

An open secret to making money through betting is to always find the best odds. To do this, you must;

  1. Bet early’

Start betting as soon as the markets open. This is because early odds are often subjects to inefficiencies within the market and lines. Thus, you might find that the oddsmaker has overestimated the risk of a particular outcome, leading to favorable odds. Of course, as time goes by, the sportsbook will get more information and adjust the line accordingly.

  1. Shop around for odds

This is the surest way to get the best NBA odds. Different sportsbooks offer different odds for the same game. Some have more winnings than others. Thus, it’s always best to shop around and compare NBA odds from various oddsmakers before placing your bet. Always go for the sportsbook that offers the best winnings.

  1. Bet through legal sportsbooks

You don’t hear this often, but the best odds are also those that assure a payout if you win. This is why it’s crucial to only bet through legal sportsbooks. Illegal online sports betting sites often have the most attractive odds. However, there is no guarantee that you’ll get paid if you win your games.

Betting On NBA Futures Odds

NBA futures have some of the best odds in betting. If you make the correct long-term prediction, you can win up to or even exceed ten times your initial bet amount. NBA events with the best futures odds include;

NBA Championship Odds

Who will win the NBA finals? Predicting the NBA championship winner is not easy. At the start of the season, you’ll get odds starting from +500 for the favorites, all the way to +6000. These odds will change as the season unravels and in form teams take their positions in the rankings. Thus, the earlier you make a bet, the more your potential winnings.

NBA Divisional Odds

These are betting odds on which teams will win their respective divisions. Since there are usually clear favorites in the divisions, the risk is relatively small. Thus, the odds don’t promise as much winnings as championship odds.

NBA Playoff Odds

Another popular future bet is the playoff. Which teams will make the NBA playoffs? The odds here are pretty great, and if you can parlay your bets, you’re in for huge winnings.

NBA Win Totals Odds

Win totals are wagers on the total number of wins a team will have by the end of the season. They are usually presented in the over/under format. For instance, at the start of the season, the Boston Celtics may have a line of 50.5. So, you wager on whether they will get more wins (over) or fewer wins (under).


You can also bet on MVP awards. Which player will have the best season and win the league’s MVP?

NBA Rookie of the Year Odds

The Rookie of the Year award goes to the player with the best debut NBA season. So, if you’ve been following a player before they got into the NBA, and think that they might have a great season, these odds allow you to make money off their performances.

NBA Draft Odds

The draft is another opportunity to bet on players eligible to join the league. Odds for the NBA draft are excellent, promising well over ten times the initial bet amount.

How to find the Best NBA Picks & Predictions

NBA picks and predictions are the best way to get some insight into the day’s bets. If this insight comes from betting experts, it might help you win several of your NBA bets.

To ensure that you only get the best picks and predictions, go for established websites and social media accounts. Don’t trust a random guy selling ‘expert’ NBA picks on Facebook and Twitter. In fact, some of the best picks and predictions are available for free on established platforms, like Betsperts.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the over-under in NBA?

This is a wager on the total score of an NBA game. If you believe the score will exceed the line set by the oddsmaker, you choose over. But if you think otherwise, bet under.

What’s the line on the NBA?

The line is also known as the spread in NBA. It refers to the margin sportsbooks use to handicap the favorite in a game.

How do you bet on the NBA playoffs?

You can bet many different ways on the NBA playoffs; moneylines, futures, spreads, and point totals.

What is the difference between Vegas NBA odds vs. Online Sportsbook NBA Odds?

Sportsbooks in Las Vegas generate Vegas NBA odds. Since the city has been the hub for sports betting in America, many assume that Vegas odds are better than online odds. However, that isn’t always the case.

How do you find the best NBA Odds?

Bet early, shop around for odds, and only use legal sportsbooks to find the best odds.

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