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NBA handicapping

How Does NBA Handicap Betting Work?

One of the misconceptions about NBA betting is that top NJ sportsbooks are establishing betting lines entirely based on who they think is going to win the game. Certainly, that does play a significant element. Betting sites such as bet365 NJ app, aren’t setting a team as the favorite because they like them. It’s because they like them to be the winner of the game.

However – and this really isn’t a secret – betting sites, like all businesses, are in the business of making money. When they set odds on a game, ideally, they want to balance the books in terms of bets between the favorite and the underdog. If they don’t and most of the bets, and more importantly, the vast percentage of the handle is wagered on one team, should that team win, the betting site could be poised to lose their shirts financially.

This is where handicapping of NBA games enters into the scenario. By establishing a point spread on a game and then moving that line to reflect the betting action on that game, oddsmakers are attempting to get as much money wagered on the underdog as is wagered on the favorite.

How The Point Spread Works

Let’s say the Los Angeles Clippers are 5.5-point favorites over the Detroit Pistons. Bettors still are of the belief that the Clippers will cover that spread, and 82 percent of the early action is on LA. Betting sites are going to be paying out a lot of winners should the Clippers indeed emerge triumphant. To try to avoid taking a financial hit, they move the line to make a bet on Detroit more favorable.

If the spread lengthens to Clippers -7.5, suddenly there are bettors who aren’t as confident in LA’s ability to cover that spread and there’s significant money going on Detroit. By handicapping the odds, the betting sites have achieved the desired balance in wagering on the game. 

What Does Third Quarter Betting In NBA Moneyline Mean?

The third quarter is the one played immediately after halftime in an NBA game and can often prove to be vital in changing the course of the game. The coaching staffs of both teams involved in the game will be making adjustments to their respective game plans during the halftime break. This can both exploit weaknesses in the opposing defense, as well as shore up deficiencies in their own play without the basketball.

Certain trends can be revealed to NBA bettors by studying how teams respond in their third quarter performance. For instance, during the 2021-22 NBA Finals between the Boston Celtics and Golden State Warriors, the team that won the second quarter was on the losing side in the third quarter during all six games of the series. 

One of the more closely followed forms of wagering on NBA games involves third quarter betting. These plays include what’s taking place on court in the third quarter and only the third quarter.

One type of third quarter betting is playing the third quarter moneyline. Online sports betting apps like BetMGM and BetRivers will offer third quarter betting markets on the moneyline for that quarter. A favorite and underdog will be indicated as with the full game moneyline. The difference, though, is that this wager is only taking into account the final score during the third quarter of play. Some betting sites will even offer a draw option in the third quarter moneyline. Third quarter point spread wagers are another option given by sportsbooks. 

Third quarter total wagering will also be offered by online sports betting sites. Again, a points total similar to the full game total wager is posted. The difference being, this wager accounts only for points scored during the third quarter of the game. Bettors wager on whether the quarter score will be going over or under the total established by oddsmakers. Betting sites may also provide third quarter total wagering for the score posted during the quarter for each of the two participating teams. 

What Do Straight And Line Mean In NBA Betting?

Traditional styles of NBA betting are also referred to as straight bets. They are all wagers that in some manner are impacted by the outcome of the game. As well, they’re the most common forms of wagers placed by NBA bettors.

The point spread is a straight bet in which NBA bettors are required to give, or will actually get points that will make an impact on the final score of the game and what it will take for the bet to pay out as a winner.

If the Phoenix Suns are 3.5-point favorites over the Houston Rockets in an NBA game, this is the point spread. Here’s how it works – as the favorite, bettors backing the Suns must give 3.5 points when wagering on Phoenix. That means in order for their bet to cash, the Suns must win the game by a minimum of four points. 

Back the underdog Rockets, though, and you’ll be getting 3.5 points. It’s as if Houston takes the court already leading the game 3.5-0. Should Houston win the game, their backers obviously cash a winning ticket. However, as long as the Rockets lose by three points or less, thanks to the point spread, that bet on Houston still wins.

The moneyline is a straight win-lose wager on the outcome of the game that doesn’t require laying any points. Moneylines are calculated based on $100 wagers. On the same Suns-Rockets game, you might see a moneyline of Phoenix -115 Houston +125. Bet $100 on the underdog Rockets and you’ll win $125 if they win. Wager $115 on the Suns and you’ll realize a $100 profit should Phoenix win the game.

Finally, there’s the total. Sportsbooks establish a number of points that it believes the two teams will combine to score during the game. Often, the total comes with a half point to ensure there won’t be any ties. So the total might be 214.5. Bettors wager on whether the two teams will combine to go over or under that total. 

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