Last updated on: April 4th, 2022

Legal NBA Betting

The NBA is one of the biggest and most-watched sports in the world and that extends directly to the popularity of legal NBA betting. Legal NBA betting happens across the world during the season as well as into the postseason, with fans growing in numbers every year. Bettors will even wager on the NBA well into the off-season because of some of the betting lines offered during the draft and free agency period. With 82 games played by each team during the regular season, the intrigue is alive and well and the wagering opportunities are abundant among pro basketball fans. That’s not even counting the millions of fans that are found in other countries such as Spain and China. Some of the best NBA players come from outside of the US and ironically enough so do the best sportsbooks.

While legal sports betting is widely accepted in other foreign territories, it can be difficult to figure out how to legally bet on the NBA in your home state. Sportsbooks have spread outside the confinement of Nevada and have made their way to over a third of all states. Betting on the NBA in these states is as easy as heading down to the sportsbook or logging in to a betting app. However, if you live in a state without one (or do but want better wagering options), then look no further than online international sportsbooks. We’ll break down how you’re able to use these sites without fear of the law, explain how NBA betting lines work, and explain sports betting best practices that can be applied to your NBA wagers, and take you all the way to the NBA Finals.

​Online Versus Land-Based NBA Betting

Betting at land based sportsbooks has its benefits, but so do legal online sportsbooks. Land-based NBA betting can serve as a fun experience because this option is often times found in a casino setting. There are plenty of TVs to watch multiple games at once, as well as food and drink available while you watch your bets play out. However, land-based sports wagering can often time come with hidden costs such as the plane ticket or car ride it takes to get there, as well as possibly having to stay the night in the city because of the distance. If you plan to bet on a popular home team then you could possibly see weighted betting lines as well.

This is the advantage that comes with betting on the NBA online. You can do so wherever you have an internet connection and because they are based overseas you’ll be able to see the fairest betting lines for any game that’s about to tip-off. They also tend to come with promotional deals and bonuses that new users and returning members can take advantage of. They even have multiple ways to deposit into your account including cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. These are just a few key differences between land-based and online NBA betting.

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Odds To Win 2022 NBA

The NBA Finals is the accumulation of the entire NBA season where the best teams in both conferences meet up and battle for league supremacy. Sportsbooks host odds for 2022 NBA Finals even before the season starts giving futures betting fans the option to wager early. There are positive odds on all the top teams including the Brooklyn Nets, Phoenix Suns, and defending champions Milwaukee Bucks.

How Legal NBA Betting Works

While there are many options for legal sports betting on the NBA, there are a few key steps you should take before throwing your money at every game. These three checkmarks are simple ways that every responsible sports bettor takes in order to make the most out of their wagers. These will apply to any sportsbook of your choice, no matter if you’re choosing to use an online betting site or land-based sportsbook.

Shop NBA Betting Lines First

NBA betting lines can vary from one sportsbook to the next. One of them may have the Golden State Warriors listed at (-3) betting odds, another may have them at (-10). Even though they are the favorite to win that particular matchup in this scenario, your spread bet could be influenced heavily by the line you choose to bet on. Payouts for these bets can vary as well. One of them may have a moneyline set for Golden State at (-150) while another may have them at (-120). In this example, by simply exploring your options and shopping lines you can save 30 dollars on your NBA bet. This is why many sports bettors tend to have more than one online sportsbook account.

NBA Playoff Trends

The NBA playoffs are the most exciting games of the year since each team goes all out in pursuit of the NBA championship. Despite the current idea that the regular season does not matter in the playoffs, historically, the highest-seeded teams are the ones who make and win the NBA championship. The last eight NBA title winners were either the first or second seed in their respective conferences. Outside of the 2018 Cleveland Cavaliers, the 2010 Boston Celtics, and now the 2020 Miami Heat no other team has made the finals that seeded lower than third in their respective conferences over the last eight years. There have been 20 times since the 1999-2000 season that a lower-seeded team has upset a number one seed and advanced to the finals. What this shows sports bettors is that the two teams facing one another will most likely be at least a top-three seed in their conference. It is also fairly common for a number one seed to lose in the playoffs, making for some interesting longshot odds as the playoffs persist.

Betting On The NBA MVP

One of the most coveted awards in the NBA is the NBA league MVP award that is given to the standout player every year. Since this award is one of the biggest, sportsbooks see a lot of action being placed every year on who will win. The league MVP award is usually all about narratives, changing criteria each season. One year the best player on the most winning team will one, another year the player who is having the greatest statistical year will win. Because of this, the league MVP award is the most unpredictable award year in and year out so early betting could lead to major wins should a player you pick wind up with a legendary season.

2022 NBA Defensive Player of the Year

The NBA Defensive Player of the Year (DPOY) award is one of the biggest awards every year and betting fans place heavy action on who will claim the award every season. This award is based on the player who has shows the most lockdown defense on the season and is highly debated constantly among fans and sports analysts, making this an unpredictable betting line. Some voters may lean towards betting on a rim protector, while others may lean towards betting on a defensive wing stopper. With the criteria changing constantly, anyone can win any given season making this award a perfect attraction for sports betting fans.

Betting On The Most Improved Player

The NBA Defensive Player of the Year (DPOY) award is one of the biggest awards every year and betting fans place heavy action on who will claim the award every season. This award is based on the player who has shows the most lockdown defense on the season and is highly debated constantly among fans and sports analysts, making this an unpredictable betting line. Some voters may lean towards betting on a rim protector, while others may lean towards betting on a defensive wing stopper. With the criteria changing constantly, anyone can win any given season making this award a perfect attraction for sports betting fans.

Betting On the NBA Sixth Man of The Year Award

The NBA Sixth Man of the Year award is a major attraction at online sportsbooks. This award has gone to many big names who come off the bench, and due to the candidates being role players, it’s harder to predict who will have that impact to win the award. Knowing a team’s full roster is important to predicting which standout bench player will lead to major wins at online sportsbooks.

Betting On the NBA Rookie of the Year Award

The NBA Rookie of the Year Award is one of the biggest NBA awards every season. The best young prospects see their odds shift with each big game or poor performance, and the NBA Media’s narratives greatly affect this award. The first-year players who are making the most noise around the league are the main ones that betting fans should look out for. Odds for the NBA Rookie of the Year award are available as early as right after the NBA Draft. Betting fans can place action on futures odds, taking players’ long odds long before the season starts. This is the best way to play, as the odds will net bigger returns if the wagered rookie ends up winning.

Betting On The NBA Draft

The NBA Draft is one of the biggest moments of the NBA each year as teams sel ect potential franchise-changing talent to better their rosters. Sportsbooks host betting lines for prospects who could be selected as lottery picks, with a lot of action going to betting on the potential 1st overall pick. Players’ stock is based on their play in college, high school, or overseas with top prospects having years of film showing their potential. What makes the betting on the NBA Draft different fr om other leagues is that leagues like the NFL go based heavily on position.

In the NBA, however, it is almost solely based on the best prospect available. Team workouts, rumors, and meetings all affect betting lines for the NBA Draft betting so fans should pay close attention to what’s going on in the NBA world as they place action. The NBA Draft will kick off on Thursday, July 29.

Making Deposits At Online Sportsbooks

When making your deposits at online sportsbooks you’ll want to decide how soon you need that deposit to be added to your account along with how much you plan to send. Methods such as bank wire transfers allow you to send thousands of dollars into your account, however, it may take several days for you to be able to use those funds. If you need to send funds faster then your best bet will be to use cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. Those transactions will usually take less than 24 hours to process. Online sportsbooks should have a cashier section on their site to list out all your different deposit options as well as have customer support to help you through the process.

Claiming NBA Betting Bonuses

As many online sportsbooks offer bonuses for both returning and first-time bettors, it is good to note how to use sportsbook bonuses when betting on the NBA. The process is simple, sportsbooks like Bovada, BetOnline, MyBookie, and SportsBetting offer bonus codes that sports bettors will enter upon depositing into their accounts. These bonuses will give a certain percent match on the initial deposit. These can be valued at up to $1,000 for legal sports bettors to use to wager on their favorite NBA teams. Bonuses are the best way to increase your betting wallets simply by signing up. Most sportsbooks have rollover requirements for bonuses. It is important to check these so you are aware of how many wagers are required before you can collect your winnings.

NBA Betting Wager Types


Moneyline NBA odds are the simplest of NBA bets that you can make as it is just betting on the overall winner of a single game. Depending on the odds of the game, payouts can differ based on the favored and longer odds.


Betting totals are easy to understand as you are just betting on the total combined points in a single game from both teams. With these odds, you are betting on whether the total points will go over or under the set total.


Betting on the spread is similar to betting on the moneyline, however, it has to do with the winning margin between the winner and loser of the game. You can either bet on the margin the winner will win by or by how much the underdog will lose by.

Player prop/Team prop

Player and team props are what make betting on the NBA enjoyable. Here you can bet on specific player performances such as their total points, rebounds, assists, and more. As for the team prop odds, you can bet on first and second half odds, total three-pointers, total rebounds, and many more aspects of the game.

Other Ways To Bet On NBA Games

There are other ways to bet on NBA games and one of the most popular includes futures bets. These are based on possible outcomes that can happen well before the season even starts. This could include possibly betting on the Golden State Warriors to win the Western Conference, betting on the 76ers to win their division, betting on the Lakers to make the playoffs and more. The odds listed for futures bets change throughout the course of the season and will often provide the best payouts at the beginning of the season.

Bovada NBA Betting

Live Betting

Live betting on NBA games is the most fast-paced form of sports betting there is. That’s because while all the other wagering types we discussed are locked in at opening tip-off, live bets are placed as the game is playing out in real-time. If you think a certain player is going to miss an upcoming free throw then you can bet on it. If you believe an upcoming inbound play is going to result in a turnover then you can bet on that too. These odds change frequently so you have to be quick in order to make the most out of every NBA game. Read more about live in game betting here.

Mobile NBA Betting

Mobile sports betting on the NBA is without a doubt the most convenient way to bet on basketball. That is because all you need is a smartphone or tablet and all of the latest odds and wagering types will be available at your fingertips. Online offshore sportsbooks such as Bovada, BetOnline, and SportsBetting provide mobile-friendly versions of their sites so getting ahold of NBA betting lines is a fast and easy process. They even offer live betting through your mobile device so the next time you’re sitting at an arena you can pull out your phone and start cashing in on the game.