If you are an NBA fan, watching a game, especially if your team is playing, is very exciting. Perhaps you are also considering betting on basketball games? This is a great way to make a match even more stirring with a possibility to earn some money.

Knowing a lot about NBA and specific teams and players will be of great help if you want to place a bet. But in case you are new to betting, you will also need to learn some basic things about it.

In this article we intend to make some essential betting concepts more clear to you.

Where and How to Bet?

But before you start betting, first pay attention to the NBA odds lists, find a good online option for sports betting such as BetAmerica, and try out the basic betting options that we will describe further on.

When you try them out you can continue using them, or you can go for more advanced betting options, like betting on specific players, or specific quarter or half-time results, etc. You will see, there are many options.

However, let’s start with the basics:

The Favorite Vs. The Underdog

Online sportsbooks usually place a number next to the name of both teams in a game. One is a positive (+), the other a negative (-) number. The negative number indicates a favorite, and the positive the underdog team. This is conceived in such a way so that betting on a favorite is always less profitable than betting on the underdog.

Moneyline Bet

How does this actually work? Well, let’s explain it by using the example of the simplest kind of bet you can make: the moneyline bet.

Here, you are simply picking the team that you think will win the game. This is where the two numbers, the negative one and the positive one, have their role to play.

So, let’s say that the negative number is -415 and the positive one is +310. This means that you would need to wager $415 on the first team (the favorite) to win $100. But it also means that you would win $310 if you put a bet of $100 on the underdog team, and they win the game.

The Spread

The point spread, or simply the spread, is another very common way of betting. This is another number that sportsbooks use to encourage equal numbers of people to bet on the favorite and the underdog teams.

If next to the first team it says -7.5 and next to the other team the number is +7.5, this means that the first team is the favorite and that this team is favored by 7.5 points, and that the other team is the underdog and that the number next to it is the lead given to it before the game.

So, in this kind of betting, you wager on whether you think the first team will win by more than 7.5 points (8 points or more). You can also bet on the second team either winning or losing by less than 7.5 points.

There is usually another number, in parentheses next to the spread, like this -7.5 (- 110). These numbers determine the payout, as is the case in a moneyline bet. If the number is – 110, this means you will have to bet $110 to win $100. This number is called the vig (the vigorish) or juice, and it determines the percent of the commission sportsbooks will make to book the bet.

On the other hand, if this number next to the underdog team is +105, this means that when you bet $100 on that team, and it covers the spread, you will get a profit of $105.

Over/Under Bet

This is the third kind of the most common and simplest bets you can make.

In this case, it is not important which team wins or loses the game, you are betting on the total number of points scored in the game. The line is predetermined (for example, it is 215) and you simply choose whether you think the number of points scored by both teams at the end of the game will be over or under this line.

In the example we gave, you would win an over bet if the score was 216 or higher, and you would win an under bet if the score was 214 or lower.

This is an interesting way to place a bet because you don’t have to worry at all about which team wins or loses, so you can watch a game in an entirely different way than you are used to.


The important thing when betting is to be informed, and above all to have fun. Hopefully, this text will be helpful to you in both ways. By providing you with useful information on basic betting options, and also by helping you have fun, and perhaps even earning some extra money. Good luck!


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