As the NBA season approaches, the anticipation grows, and the possibility of another deep postseason run for the Dallas Mavericks excites us all. With new additions, rotation mainstays, and of course Luka Doncic, we are in for another fun year. The new season also brings life to another favorite hobby, NBA betting! We will take a look at everything you need to know to be prepared to bet on your favorite team.
To start off with, if you aren’t familiar with betting jargon, no need to worry. I am here to explain everything. Let’s get started with some terms you will see throughout the year in our betting articles.
- Spread – also referred to as the “line” is used to make even the matchup between two teams as much as possible. For example, if the Mavericks were playing the Rockets, we can safely assume that the Mavericks should win that game. That being said the spread will see the books giving Rockets points, a head start if you will, to even out the game as much as possible. You will see the spread expressed as either a + or a -.
- “+” – When you see a “+” before the spread that means that particular team is the underdog, and the books are adding points to that team to even out the matchup. Back to the example, a Mavs-Rockets matchup will have the Rockets as the underdog, so we might see a spread of Rockets +8. This means the Rockets were given an 8-point head start, meaning if you bet on the Rockets, they have an 8-point cushion and can lose by up to 7 points for you to still win your bet.
- “-“ – When you see a “-“ before the spread that means the particular team is the favorite, and the books are essentially taking away points from that team. So again Mavs-Rockets matchup might see the Mavs -8 in the matchup. This means the Mavs have to win by more than 8 points to win the bet.
- Push- a push in betting is essentially a tie. If you bet the Mavs -8 against the Rockets and they won by exactly 8 points, this would be considered a push and you neither win nor lose the bet.
- Money line- The money line takes no spread into account and is just betting on a team to win. This completely ignores a team having to win or lose by a certain number. The odds for this will be greater or lower than the spread depending on whether you bet on the underdog or favorite. If you bet a favorite money line, then the odds will not be as good. If you bet money line on an underdog, while it is a bigger risk the payout will be larger.
- Odds- everything you bet on will have odds, this determines the payout of the bet. You will see this expressed as a number with either a “+” or a “-“ in front of it. Remember a “+” means underdog, or the outcome less likely to happen. A “-“ means favorite, or the outcome that is most likely to happen. For example, you might see the odds for the Mavs to beat the Rockets as -200. This means you would have to bet $200 to win $100. Now you could see the odds for the Rockets to beat the Mavs as +275. This means if you bet $100 you would win $275.
- Over/Under- this one is pretty simple, an over/under is betting on whether the total of the game will go over the projected points or vis versa. Player Props will have this format as you are betting whether they will reach their total or not.
- Player Props- when you see us talking about player props this means that we are betting on a statistical category for a particular player. For example, if we are betting on Luka to score a certain number of points or assists this is considered a player prop.
- Game Props- these props differ from player props as game props are miscellaneous bets that take place during the game. This can include first team to score, first player to score, first team to 100, and even if the game ends on a total of an even or odd number. (Yes, I am degenerate that has bet on that last one)
- Parlay - you will hear this term a lot in the sports betting world. A parlay is simply just betting on multiple games on one bet. In order for you to win your parlay each pick you make must be correct. You could pick 5 NBA games to bet on and if you go 4/5 you unfortunately lose your bet. This is popular to do as the odds for combining multiple bets makes the payout larger.
- Bad beat - bad beats are exactly what it sounds like, simply just a bad unfortunate loss. Consider this, you bet a team to win money line and the opposing team hits a half-court buzzer beater to win. Now you lose your bet on this very improbable shot. That my friend is a prime example of a bad beat and will happen to you more than you think it will. Nevertheless, we push on.
You are now ready to bet on the Mavs and I look forward to sweating out all the bets with everyone this season. Be on the lookout for our Mavs season betting preview, where we will be looking at our favorite season long bets and storylines!