How to bet on basketball?


Basketball is one of the most popular and exciting sports. Thus, in the world of betting, this game also attracts many bettors. In this article, we will talk about how to bet on basketball and get a profit from it. 

Basketball rules

Basketball is a dynamic and exciting team game. Here two teams of five players compete on the court, each side strives to throw the ball into the basket as much as possible. The match lasts four quarters (or 2 halves in college basketball) of 12 minutes (10 in Europe) each, with a break in the middle of the game.

There are three types of shots in basketball: 2-point, 3-point and free throw. A ball hitting the basket from a distance of 6.75 meters brings the team 3 points, while a throw from a closer distance only 2 points. A “free throw” is a throw from a line of 4.6 meters from the backboard, taken by a player after a violation of the rules on it by an opponent. For each such hit, the team gets 1 point.

Basketball players can’t stay under the opponent's hoop for more than 3 seconds, take more than two steps without moving the ball, push or touch opponents' hands, etc. There are are also many additional rules in this sport that are determined by the official regulations of the tournament.

Popular types of basketball bets

Basketball matches are very popular in the world of betting. In this game, there are a lot of various statistical events, but most cappers use the following types of bets:

  • Moneyline: Betting on the winner of a match.
  • Asian Handicap: This bet is made on the difference in points between teams.
  • European Handicap: This is a bet on the victory of a certain team, taking into account the chosen handicap.
  • Total: A bet on the total eg. number of points scored by both or one of the teams in a match.
  • Quarters: These bets are placed on certain parts of the match. In fact, all other types of bets are applicable to it.

Note that each of the above bet types has its own nuances and should be applied depending on the strategy of the bettor.

Basketball Betting Strategies

As we already said, basketball is an extremely popular sport and so many punters bet on these clashes and tournaments. Bettors have use many strategies but many of them are not effective. We have selected the most popular strategies, which can increase your chances of winning.


The surebet strategy allows placing bets on opposite outcomes of the event in a way so you get a guaranteed profit despite the result. Such a situation is possible due to the different estimates of probability and fluctuations in betting lines.

Surebet in calculator


Total betting strategy

The total betting strategy is based on predicting the total number of points scored or other game events in the match. The player should choose a certain number and bet on whether this value will exceed the final result. This strategy can be effective if you analyze the statistics of previous games, the shape of the teams and other factors that affect the outcome.

Totals in basketball betting


Comparing quarters

The essence of the strategy "comparing quarters" is to bet on quarters, basing the bet on the events in previous quarters and statistical information. For example, if a team showed strong play in the first quarter, then you can bet on its victory in second quarter. If the team tends to lose in the last quarter, you can bet on the opponent's victory. Quarter betting allows players to earn money without waiting for the end of the game.


The catch-up strategy's aim is in doubling the bet size if you lose in the previous stage. In basketball, this system is often used in conjunction with the “quarter” strategy. With correct prediction and consistent catching up of losses, a positive result can be achieved. However, do not forget that this system has a high risk of losing large amounts and can quickly lead to the depletion of the player's bank.

Oscar Grind Strategy

The Oscar Grind strategy is a betting system, according to which the bettor increases the bet size by one unit after losing and reduces the size by the same unit after winning. The purpose of such manipulations is to stay in black when a given number of wins is reached.

How to bet in Live mode

Live betting is a way to bet in real-time. When playing live, bettors can use the fast-changing odds as their advantage. To successfully place live bets on basketball matches, you should quickly analyze the situation in a match and make decisions in accordance with the current game situation.

We have compiled a few basic rules that should be followed when playing live:

  • study the line-ups of the teams and statistics of past games even before the start of the match;
  • bet during breaks;
  • try not to make many bets on one clash;
  • calculate changes in totals in real-time;

Live basketball betting can be quite profitable if you know how to analyze the game and choose the right events. Follow your strategy and remember to control the bankroll to get profit from your bets.

Basketball Betting Tips

Sports betting only seems simple, but in fact, it is necessary to analyze a lot of statistical information. The same situation is with basketball - you shouldn't bet randomly. We have prepared some useful tips that will help you to lower the risks of losing money on basketball bets:

  1. Consider the state of the team and its leaders. If the key players are in good shape, then the chances of winning are significantly higher. 
  2. Pay attention to the venue of the match. It is much easier to play with the support of a native audience and on a well-known court.
  3. Read the predictions of experienced bettors. Of course, you should not blindly trust all the experts in a row, but it’s still worth listening to the opinion of reputable experts.
  4. Be careful with large bets. You should not load a large amount of money for one match, because you can lose a significant part of your bankroll.
  5. Keep a record of your bets. Always write down the bet results, because you can improve your performance with the help of statistics.
  6. Consider previous team statistics throughout the season. There is a lot of different information to look at: average points scored per game, average possession percentage per game, 2-point and 3-point shot average, etc.

Typical newbie mistakes

When it comes to basketball betting, it's common for beginners to make a number of standard mistakes that can lead to the loss of the entire bankroll. We have written out the most common mistakes, try to avoid them:

  1. Betting without understanding basketball. Without understanding the basic rules, tactics and strategies of the game, the chance to bet successfully is extremely low.
  2. Ignoring the team state. The condition of key players and the whole team has a major impact the results.
  3. Chaotic bets without any system. Beginners prefer to bet on everything, but this always leads to a loss of money.
  4. Bets on your favorite team. It's great when a person is a fan of a certain club, but when it comes to betting, it can cloud his mind and make him make rash bets. You should avoid betting on your favorite teams, especially in basketball.

What leagues would you recommend betting on?

Basketball matches are played all over the world, but not all of them are worth betting on. Most bettors choose the following leagues: NBA, European tournaments, domestic leagues and international tournaments. Let's talk in a few words about each of these leagues.


The NBA is the most popular basketball league in which play the best basketball players. More than 1200 matches are held here in one season, so there are plenty of events for betting. There are many surprises in the NBA regular season because even the league's favorites find it difficult to win all 82 fights. In the NBA, you can find hundreds of different events to bet.

European tournaments

European tournaments lag behind American basketball, however, they are also a good betting choice. There are two tournaments worth keeping an eye on in Europe: the Euroleague and the Eurocup. Here are the best teams on the continent, such as Barcelona, Real Madrid, Olympiacos, Fenerbahce and Anadolu Efes. In European tournaments, there are smaller lines for totals, as players only spend 40 minutes on the court.

Domestic leagues

Turkish Basketball League, ACB Spanish League, Italian Basketball Serie A, VTB United League and many other leagues are the elite basketball in Europe. Bookmakers offer a high-quality line for the clashes in these championships. In addition, each individual country has its own favorites, which rarely lose to rivals.

International tournaments

National teams also hold basketball matches, there are many important tournaments: the World Cup, the European Championship, the Olympic Games. However, the national teams play in a completely different manner, because the players do not have the coherence that is present in their clubs. When betting on international tournaments, one should take into account the momentary readiness of each team, its physical skills and tactics.

Betwasp — The best arbitrage betting service

In the modern world, bettors have a number of tools at their disposal that help them achieve success in sports betting. One of these tools is the BetWasp service. This software in a matter of seconds finds and provides the player with all existing surebets and value bets. The service scans the line of more than 40 most popular bookmakers in the USA and Canada in 40+ sports.

BetWasp arbitrage betting service



How to bet on basketball?

In order to bet on basketball, you need to follow a number of simple steps:

1. Create an account in the selected bookmaker.

2. Make a deposit to your bookie’s account.

3. Select the basketball league and the specific match you want to bet on.

4. Bet on the selected event.

What is the most popular basketball bet?

The basketball line has a wide variety of bets to choose from, but the most popular bet is the final result of the match or “Moneyline” (one of the teams wins).

Where are the highest basketball odds?

The highest odds for basketball matches can be found in the NBA. The high popularity of the tournament entails a wide range of outcomes and the highest odds for events. In addition, some leading bookmakers set a low margin for NBA matches, which also has a positive effect on the level of odds.

The best bookmaker for basketball betting?

The most popular bookmakers for betting on basketball in the USA (all these bookmakers are available in our BetWasp scanner) are:

  • DraftKings;
  • FanDuel;
  • BetMGM;
  • TwinSpires;
  • William Hill.

Is it possible to bet on basketball in extra time?

Some bookmakers offer a great variety of bets on the extra time, while others may have very small lines. It all depends on the specific conditions and rules of each individual bookmaker.

Oleg Borshchev
Having a huge wealth of knowledge and 11 years of betting proficiency, Oleg kindly shares his tips and experience in our blog. In his articles, you'll learn more about different strategies and bet types, as well as find a lot of useful advices and tips.
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