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In any investment, you expect to have fun and make money. Michael Jordan

Basketball Betting Strategies

When it comes to basketball betting, consistency is the key to winning regular and tangible amounts of money. Basketball is often a game that is decided by slips, errors and pieces of magic from the best players in the game. This means many people think it is impossible to be consistent in their betting because every game has the potential to spin off in a hundred different ways.

This is true. However, when it comes to betting on basketball over the course of a tournament, say a FIBA World Cup, an Olympic Basketball tournament, or a season, with the NBA season being a prime example, being consistent in your betting strategy and tactics will provide the best chance for success.

These are some of the most attractive basketball betting strategies you want to develop.

Bet Against The Public

Bet Against The PublicOne of the best ways to develop a successful basketball betting strategy is to bet against the public. This means if you see a team that the public is getting fully behind, bet on the opposition. The logic that you rarely see a poor sportsbook or bookmaker is all the information you need to remember that the general public regularly call it wrong when they bet.

You’ll also find that the value on offer when betting against the public often provides a good return, because the sportsbook are keen to minimise the odds for the majority of punters piling on to one particular outcome or team.

Sports betting fans naturally side with the favourites and the overs market and when you add in the high level of media hype, you often get a distorted view of what is likely to happen in a game. Even if a team is being tipped to lose heavily, the psychology of these comments will often strengthen their resolve and place them in a position where they are determined to avoid defeat. For this reason, the overs/unders market can be lucrative when you bet against the public.

Reverse-Line Movement

The notion of betting against the public or looking for a movement in the line that seemingly contradicts the way the public is betting can be of benefit. Sportsbooks will take many things into consideration when creating betting lines and when you see the majority of the market betting one way, but the line moves another way, you know that there is something to take an interest in. It may be that the intelligent money or large bets from individual people or syndicates is coming in on the side opposite to the public.

An example would be the Orlando Magic versus the Denver Nuggets. The opening line may stand at Orlando Magic -14 versus Denver Nuggets +14 and a sizable proportion (say 80%) of the market is betting on the Nuggets, but if the lines then switch to Orlando Magic -13 versus Denver Nuggets +13, you know that something is taking place away from what the general public is feeling or betting.

In this regard, you should look to find another sportsbook that still has Orlando at +14 and move in on it.

Major Line Moves

A major line move is when there is a large and drastic movement over the entire marketplace for sports betting. This can happen for a number of reasons but one of the most pertinent reasons comes with large syndicates or betting groups working together, placing several large bets on an outcome. This causes a movement in many of the bets on offer in the basketball market.

When this occurs, you shouldn’t just follow on blindly, you need to remember that big players and syndicates have the resources to absorb many losses. You also need to remember that sometimes the big players involved with basketball betting place large bets so that they can influence the market to suit their own needs. It is not uncommon for major players or syndicates to place 50,000 units on a home team, knowing that this will impact on the market, and once they get the reaction, they place 150,000 units on the bet that they wanted to make. This will provide them with a points move in the way that they wanted, allowing them to make an even bigger profit, more than compensating the 50,000 units they were happy to drop.

This is a move that is commonly used by the big players, but if you are aware of the changes in the market place, you can also take advantage of this. This is clearly a more advanced form of basketball betting, one that requires you to be in touch with the market and able to move quickly, but depending on your resources, the market changes will provide you with an opportunity to make a better return for your bets at certain times. There are times when the best basketball strategy is more about timing as opposed to looking for a particular way to place bets.

Shading Sports Betting Lines

When it comes to shading sports betting lines, it is important to remember that basketball betting sites are corporate entities looking to maximise their income. They are not altruistic beings providing you with a completely honest appraisal of the likely outcome of a game. Clearly the odds on offer are a representation of an event that is yet to take place but there are a couple of reasons why sportsbooks may move their odds and lines away from what they genuinely believe are the true odds for an outcome.

Sometimes sportsbooks alter odds to act as a loss-leader that draws people into their sportsbook, which can be lucrative in the long term for their business. Sometimes sportsbooks play on human nature and overshade the lines of the favourites because they know that this is where people are most likely to bet. There is also the fact that a sportsbook knows that if they manipulate the odds available for a certain outcome, they can receive a far better return in the long term, and this is something you should always bear in mind, because this often provides the platform for finding real value. There is of course also the fact that sometimes sportsbooks call it wrongly.

Sportsbooks are corporate companies looking for a return

Sportsbooks are finding their margins being pressured all the time, which means that they need to work harder to obtain a better return, which means that their odds are often now being inflated or altered to assist their own commercial gains. This is where having inside information or confidence in a shock occurring that you can take advantage of going against the grain and finding the areas where sports betting lines are not being represented as a true representation of the actual odds of a sporting outcome.

This is where analysing a number of sportsbooks and taking the general feel of opinion on odds can be of benefit. Sportsbooks, especially online sportsbooks, will react to each other, so you may find that if one sportsbook moves in a certain manner, the rest of the market will act in the same manner. This doesn’t mean that there is widespread opinion about the outcome; it will often mean that the other firms don’t want to see one company or sportsbook have the opportunity to make a massive profit while no one else does.

Analysing the odds, and being able to act quickly, will provide you with the opportunity to determine if sportsbooks are shading certain odds for their own means as opposed to providing the market with representative odds. This is an area where you can find value by going against what the market believes.

Shopping for the Best Line

Following on from this, one of the best strategies for betting on basketball is looking around for the best odds for upcoming events. With respect to betting on the FIBA World Cup in Spain in 2014, you will find that a number of sports betting sites have released their futures markets already. Bwin has odds of 1.30 for USA, 3.50 for Spain, 21.00 for France and 31.00 for Argentina.

Conversely, Bet365 has odds of 1.40 for USA, 2.75 for Spain, 36.00 for France and 34.00 for Argentina. There are now two odds the same across the same site and the difference in odds being offered for France is quite notable, although there is a large percentage switch in the odds available for Spain. Now, you may think that USA is going to waltz away with the tournament and that all of the other odds are a moot point, but this is just an example of the range of odds you will find on different sportsbooks.

No matter the basketball tournament or season, you will find that there are clear favourites and teams that are ranked as outliers, so there will always be this sort of spread for futures markets, regardless of what the next event or tournament is.

If you are the sort of sports betting fan that is happy to have one sportsbook account for all of your betting, you may be throwing away a lot of money over the course of a year. If you lose a bet, it doesn’t really matter what sportsbook you lose your money on, but if your bet comes in, the return you receive can differ greatly depending on the available odds, so be flexible when it comes to basketball betting.

Think About The Units

If you are looking around for basketball betting strategies or tips, don’t be caught up on the amount of money won, because this isn’t always the best judge of success. Instead, focus on the level of units that have been won, because this will provide you with a better barometer of success when judging what strategies you want to follow.

Thinking about the units on offer, and betting with a set percentage of your bankroll, and you should be consistent with this over a tournament or season, will help you to evaluate the merit of your strategy and it will also help you to make more money.

As an example, you may think it would be better to go with a strategy that offers a 60% handicap compared to a 55% handicap. However, say the 60% handicap was picked up from placing one bet a day while the 55% handicap was earned placing 150 bets a month. With respect to units, the 55% handicap strategy would provide you with a units return of 9.3, while the units return for the 60% handicap system would come in at around 4.8 units. Looking at the units on offer, you would receive a far better return going for the lower percentage.

There are many different basketball bets available to choose from, and you’ll find that there are always basketball games and events to bet on. If you are looking to receive a sizable return in the long term, looking at various basketball strategies and wagering in a consistent manner will help you to improve your chances of a regular return for your investment.

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