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How to Bet NBA Totals?

April 06, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 140

More so than in other sports, people who bet on basketball like to bet on totals. These over/under bets are very tempting, as it's usually easy to predict whether a game will be high scoring or low scoring. Of course, the bookmakers know this as well, and that makes it a little tougher on the gamblers - the lines set are often pretty close to the number. However, that doesn't mean that there aren't times when betting NBA totals can't be profitable.

NBA totals or over/under bets are fairly simple to bet on. On a given night, each game will not only be assigned a point spread, but also a total. The sportsbooks will list the lines in a format that looks like this:

Los Angeles Lakers 186.5

Chicago Bulls -3

This small amount of information tells you everything you need to know to bet the total or the spread bet on that game. The Bulls are favored by three points, while the total is 186.5.

When betting on the total you just have to predict whether the combined scores of the two teams will go over or under the listed total. If the teams combine for 187 or more points, the over bet wins; if the total score is 186 or less, then the under bet wins. This total includes any points that might be scored in overtime. If the posted total is a whole number, then it is possible for the bet to result in a push if the total score equals the over/under total.

There are many strategies for betting NBA totals. It's important to look into how many points the two teams involved in each game tend to score and allow. This will give you a solid baseline from which to work in other factors. Other things to take into account include the previous games between the two teams, the styles they play and their recent schedules. If both teams have scoring threats that will be going up against weak defenders at their positions then you can expect a high score for that game. If both teams have had busy schedules (a game the previous day, or if both teams recently played on the other side of the country and just flew back), this means that the teams could play a relatively slow-paced game.

A strategy that I found helpful is to simply bet the under on the lowest total offered on any given night. Most of the public money will be on the over, which means that when the line was set it was likely set knowing that more money would be bet on the over, so the under is actually the smart play.

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Source: EzineArticles
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