Basketball Betting Guide

Basketball has become one of the most popular and followed sports in the whole world, not only in the United States. As a result, and as with the majority of sports nowadays, betting customers are now viewing basketball as a method of beating the bookmakers via placing bets on their favourite teams and players. The game itself is one of the most fast-paced around, with results often being separated in the final seconds of matches. While this makes for one of the most exciting forms of sport, it is also a potential goldmine for punters taking advantage of both pre-match and in-play markets.

Best Basketball Betting Sites

Expert Rating
Welcome Offer
  • Best Odds Available
  • Wide range of Betting Markets
95 Payout Ratio
  • Best Odds Available
  • Wide range of Betting Markets
bet365 Review
#ad | T&C Apply | +18 | Please, Gamble Responsibly: Open Account Offer Bet £10 & Get £30 in Free Bets for new customers at bet365. Min deposit requirement. Free Bets are paid as Bet Credits and are available for use upon settlement of bets to value of qualifying deposit. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply.
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  • Two different Welcome offers
  • New well-designed sportsbook
93 Payout Ratio
  • Two different Welcome offers
  • New well-designed sportsbook
Unibet Review
#ad | T&C Apply | +18 | Please, Gamble Responsibly: 18+ New customers only. Min deposit £10. Money back as bonus if first sports bet loses. Wagering requirements: sportsbook 3x at min. odds of 1.40 (2/5), casino 50x. Unless forfeited the sportsbook bonus must be wagered before using the casino bonus. Bonus expires 7 days after opt-in. Visit for full T&C's. #Ad
  • Excellent customer service package
  • Good selection of sports and bets
  • Top Winners section provides a fun element of competition
93 Payout Ratio
  • Excellent customer service package
  • Good selection of sports and bets
  • Top Winners section provides a fun element of competition
Netbet Review
  • Odds are announced early
  • Match predictions are reliable
  • Neat and functional mobile app
Payout Ratio
  • Odds are announced early
  • Match predictions are reliable
  • Neat and functional mobile app
Mr. Play Review
#ad | T&C Apply | +18 | Please, Gamble Responsibly: T&Cs apply. 18+, Welcome Bonus: New Players only, 1st Deposit, Min Deposit: £10, max £15 bonus, valid for 14 days, bets must be placed at a min. odds of 1/1 (2.00) or greater and be settled within 14 days of placement. System bets no eligible. _

Introduction of Basketball Betting

With betting on basketball having become so popular over recent years, it is important to understand all of the aspects involved with this pastime. This includes available markets, odds, tips and who the best teams and players are, with the guide providing details on all areas. Let’s kick things off by taking a look at the best platform for basketball betting in our opinion.

The Best Basketball Betting Site for Punters in the UK

In our opinion, Betway is undoubtedly among the best basketball betting sites available to punters today, with their sportsbook offering a large number of markets from the NBA, as well as a variety of other events. As well as this, the bookmaker delivers live streaming from a good number of games, which only makes the experience all the more enjoyable. On top of all this, and perhaps most importantly, the basketball odds offered by Betway are among the most competitive around, allowing for some significant and consistent winnings.

Which Basketball Events are Good to Bet On?

When it comes to basketball, there are almost endless opportunities for punters, with games taking place on a weekly basis from around the world. However, the following are among the best competitions to focus upon when betting on basketball:


Founded back in 1946, the NBA is now synonymous with the game of basketball, as well as providing the bases for much of the bets placed online. Based in the United States, the NBA is regarded as the best league in the world, with the competition being split into two divisions, the Eastern and Western Conference. 30 teams make up the two, with teams being based in both the US and Canada. The Golden State Warriors are the current NBA Champions, having defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in the final of the play-offs.


As with most sports in America, college basketball is now a million-dollar industry, with matches attracting vast amounts of media attention, as well as from betting customers. Dating back to 1891, college basketball has spread to campuses across the country, with teams battling it out for both state and national championships. Depending on the bookmaker, you will now find a wide variety of markets from this form of the game, with North Carolina having recently won their sixth title.

Other Basketball Leagues

Away from the US, there are a number of basketball competitions that feature at online bookmakers. The European Basketball League, also known as EuroLeague, features some of the best teams from throughout the continent, Meanwhile, EuroBasket is an international basketball event that has been running since 1935, with the likes of Spain and Russia among the most successful teams to date. While such events will certainly not feature as heavily at online bookmakers, markets are becoming more and more common.

Which Basketball Markets are Usually Available for Punters When Betting Online?

Punters looking to bet on basketball are able to take advantage of the following markets with the majority of bookmakers:

Match Winner – Perhaps the most common form of betting when it comes to basketball is betting on the winner of an individual game, whether it be from the NBA or Olympic Games. Each team will be offered a price based on their recent form and position in the table, along with other factors, with punters then having to back the team in which they believe will come out on top.

Total Points – Another popular market is to bet on the total number of points to be scored during a game, with the majority of bookmakers offering the chance for punters to stake on there being over or under a specific amount, such as 150.5. Meanwhile, there is often the opportunity to bet on the total points scored by one individual team.

Winning Margin – Many betting sites make it possible for punters to bet on the winning margin from a particular basketball game, with those expecting a close encounter likely to predict a margin of between 2-10, whilst larger margins are also on offer for more one-sided clashes.

Half Time/Full Time – Where basketball teams are known for being slow starters or an opponent is expected to come out of the blocks flying, it may well be worth betting on the half time/full time market, available surrounding a large number of games.

Overtime – Some betting sites will also allow punters to bet on the chance of a game going into overtime, which despite being fairly unlikely, does happen from time to time when the scoreboard is tied after four quarters.

Race To – This market has become hugely popular over recent years, due to the fact that it does not matter who eventually wins the game. Punters must predict which team will reach the stipulated points total first.

Player Specials – As well as betting on teams, punters also have the chance to bet on individual basketballers, whether it be to score a certain number of points, be named MVP or to sink the winning bucket.

Short-Term Betting in Basketball

When it comes to betting on basketball, there are a range of short-term bets on offer, which normally revolve around upcoming games from major events. For instance, if the New York Knicks and Chicago Bulls are scheduled to play against each other over the weekend, betting sites will introduce a range of markets surrounding the encounter.

Long-Term Betting in Basketball

Elsewhere, those who have the necessary patience can also take advantage of a variety of long-term markets, whether it be betting on the team who will win the NBA title or which teams will reach the gold medal game in the next Olympic games. The odds available from such markets are generally more appealing, however a significant amount of time is required before any potential winnings can be collected.

Basketball Betting Tips

When it comes to betting on basketball, there are a number of tips that must be taken into consideration before staking funds on different teams and players.

Be Sure to Check Your Bet Slip

Important when placing any form of wager, not just in basketball, is to double check your betting slip before confirming anything. There is no worse feeling that cheering on a team to win, only to find out that you have mistakenly backed their arch rivals with your online bookmaker. Due to how bookmakers operate, a large number of betting selections are available in a small space, meaning that mistakes can happen easily. While this may actually help customers in some occasions, invariably it will mean that you have lost out on winnings come the final hooter of a game. As a result, be sure to take a few seconds in order to double check your bet slip, ensuring that all selections are as expected, including teams, stake and potential returns. ting Tips

Keep Things Simple

Many customers believe that the more complex the bet in which they place, the more attractive the returns will be. This is simply not true when it comes to basketball, or the majority of sports markets. Often, the simplest of bets can provide the most substantial returns, whether it be a single bet on an NBA team, or a long-term bet on the NCAA College Basketball Champions.

Stick to What You Know

You will have undoubtedly heard this tip before, however it is for good reason. Even if you think you know everything there is to know about basketball, you are unlikely to be an expert on every single league and competition in the game. So, whether you are an avid follower of the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference of the NBA or a new follower of the game from Europe, sticking to what you know when betting is crucial. Teams, players and set-ups are all different from organisation to organisation, meaning that one type of bet may not be as successful elsewhere.

Do Your Research

As with any sport, it is also important to carry out research before placing any bet, even if you believe that your selection is as close to a sure thing as possible. When it comes to basketball, even the Warriors of Cavaliers come unstuck on occasion, and this can be put down to all manner of things. Researching a team’s form, available players and motivation are all areas that need to be taken into consideration. For example, the Golden State Warriors may have already built a substantial lead in the Western Conference ahead of the NBA Play-offs, meaning that they may not have as much motivation to defeat the LA Clippers as they normally would do. Elsewhere, they may choose to rest key players ahead of more important games, enhancing the chances of them coming unstuck.

The Best Betting Sites for Basketball

Those looking to kick-start their betting on basketball must register with a least one of the many online platforms that are available to punters. Taking into account security, range of markets, customer service and in-play betting, it is important to find a bookmaker that suits your needs as best as possible. While you are unlikely to find a bookmaker that excels in all areas, the likes of Bet365, Betway and William Hill all provide basketball customers with a wide range of services and features. Take some time to check out our bookmaker reviews to gain a better understanding of their operation, as well as some of the additional extras in which they offer. Those that are serious about making money through wagering on basketball matches will perhaps look to register with more than one bookmaker, meaning that you can take advantage of the best odds at all times. Meanwhile, for those who enjoy watching the action live as it unfolds, it may well be worth searching for a bookmaker that provides basketball action on their online platform.

Basketball Betting FAQ

In this section, our experts will provide answers to some of the most commonly asked questions surrounding betting on basketball.

Is basketball a good sport to bet on?

Basketball is undoubtedly a good sport to bet on, offering punters a huge number of markets and bet types, whilst tournaments take place throughout the year.

Are there opportunities to make a good profit from basketball betting?

As with any form of betting, those who stick to their strategy and budget are likely to be in a position to make some good profits from betting on basketball, with the top teams regularly defeating their opponents.

How do I best get started when betting on basketball?

In order to start betting on basketball, you must first find a betting site that suits your needs and wants. Having done so, come up with a strategy and do your homework before backing a player, whether it be checking out tips or reading the latest basketball news online.

Is basketball a safe and fair market to bet on?

Basketball itself is regulated by a number of different authorities, who make sure that the sport is being played within the rules. It is the same when it comes to betting on basketball, with betting sites having to ensure that the markets in which they are offering are fair.

The Stars of Basketball

Whilst there are a whole host of brilliant basketball players currently competing, the following are perhaps the standout names, who attract fans from across the globe.

Stephen Curry

Point guard Curry is a 3x NBA champion with the Golden State Warriors, having also been named as the Most Valuable Player in both 2015 and 2016. Curry regularly wows fans with his shot making ability and skill, with the fact that he is a x6 NBA All-Star showing his significant worth to both the Warriors and the NBA itself.

Lebron James

James has been the most devastating player of his generation, starring for teams including the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat, while he now represents the hugely popular Los Angeles Lakers. James is also a x3 NBA champion, while he is also a x15 NBA All-Star.

James Harden

Guard Harden has played for the Houston Rockets since 2012, with the former Arizona State graduate widely being regarded as one of the finest basketballers playing the sport today. Harden was named as the NBA MVP in 2018, while he is also a x7 All-Star.

Best Basketball Teams

Meanwhile, the following teams are among the standout basketball teams around:

Golden State Warriors

The Golden State Warriors were crowned NBA Champions in 2015, 2017 and 2018, while they came unstuck against the Toronto Raptors in the Finals in 2019. Participating in the NBA Western Conference, Head Coach Steve Kerr has helped to turn the Warriors into the most feared team in basketball today, with their current roster meaning that they can call upon the services of world class players including Steph Curry and Draymond Green.

Los Angeles Lakers

Despite having struggled over recent years, the Lakers are still undoubtedly one of the biggest teams in the NBA, with the Eastern Conference side having won the NBA title on new fewer than 16 occasions during their history. Kobe Bryant is perhaps the biggest player in their history, however Lebron James is now looking to lead them to glory.

Recent Winners

In terms of basketball tournaments, the NBA is the biggest of them all, with the following teams have come out on top over recent years:

  • 2014 – San Antonio Spurs
  • 2015 – Golden State Warriors
  • 2016 – Cleveland Cavaliers
  • 2017 – Golden State Warriors
  • 2018 – Golden State Warriors
  • 2019 – Toronto Raptors