NBA Odds and Predictions: A Guide to NBA Futures and Prop Betting
Welcome to SharpSide’s betting guide for NBA futures and prop bets. In this article, we will break down what NBA futures and prop bets are, discuss NBA player props, and talk about the general strategy behind making these wagers. We’ll also provide some resources that will help you become successful at betting NBA futures, prop bets, and player props.
Like many major sports, futures bets have always been popular with the NBA. Sports betting is a booming industry, especially around the U.S. where new legal sports betting markets are becoming more and more available. Within those markets, prop bets and player props are gaining a lot of popularity. Futures bets can allow for big paydays but they also require a bit more waiting. Prop bets and player props may not offer the same large payouts that futures bets can, but they offer more immediate payouts.
What is an NBA futures bet?
|What is an NFL futures bet?||An NBA futures bet is a wager on a future NBA event. Generally, it is a bet placed on the outcome of an NBA event in the current or upcoming season.|
An NBA futures bet is a wager on a future NBA event. Generally, it is a bet placed on the outcome of an NBA event in the current or upcoming season.
As you might expect, the most common NBA futures bet is on which team will win the NBA Championship, and a good portion of these bets are made before a season even starts.
It’s important to remember that when you place a futures bet, you’ll need to wait for a prolonged duration until the competition is complete and the bet is graded.
Example of an NBA futures bet
For example, if you bet $100 on the Los Angeles Lakers to win the NBA Championship, you’re money is going to be locked up until the end of the season, which includes playoffs. Some sportsbooks will grade the bet as a loss if the Lakers lose before the NBA Finals. With seasons taking months to complete, it’s important to understand that your money is going to be locked up for that long.
With a futures bet, the price of the bet gets locked in when the bet is made, but the odds can change after the fact as the market shifts one way or the other. Those price changes do not affect a futures bet that has already been placed, because the price is locked in. New wagers will come with the current price at the time the wager is placed.
As an example, let’s say the Boston Celtics are +600 (6-to-1) to win the NBA Championship before the season starts. If you place a $100 bet at this price, you’d receive a payout of $700 ($600 win plus your $100 bet). Let’s say the Celtics get off to a very slow start and are 2-8 through their first 10 games. The odds of Boston winning the title might change to something like +1400 (14-to-1). The previous wager you made does not change to this price, it’s locked in, but if you make a new wager you would receive the updated price. Likewise, if the Celtics start off hot and are 10-0 at the beginning of the season, the odds might drop to +375 (3.75-to-1).
There are plenty of other NBA futures bets you can make, it’s not just for who will win the NBA Championship. You can bet on conference winners, best record, MVP, and more.
What is an NBA prop bet?
|What is an NBA prop bet?||An NBA prop bet is a type of side wager placed on something not determined by the final outcome of a game. Prop bet is short for proposition bet. Common prop bets are player props, which have to do with a specific statistic for a given player.|
An NBA prop bet is a type of side wager placed on something not determined by the final outcome of a game. Prop bet is short for proposition bet. Those prop bets that are then tied to players are referred to as NBA player prop bets or NBA player props. Much like NFL futures and prop bets, NBA futures and prop bets are a great way to grind out a sports betting profit.
Player props are an are of sports betting that we at SharpSide like to emphasize. Our sister site, RotoGrinders, specializes in daily fantasy sports (DFS) and the transition from DFS to betting player props can be very smooth. We also love the entertainment that player props provide and it’s great to see player props growing in popularity.
With so many player props now available, due to the number of bets that can be made and the number of players the bets can be made on, player props often present less efficient lines than more standard betting lines. In the flourishing world of legalized sports betting that we’re in right now, NBA player props can be found for several players in each game and then each of those players usually has two or more props.
NBA player props do not affect the outcome of the game. It doesn’t matter who wins or who loses the game, it doesn’t matter if the spread is covered or the over/under total is reached or not. NBA player props are individual, player-based events within the game. It only matters if an individual player goes over or under the proposed betting line for his prop, or if the player completes the prop in the case of yes/no propositions.
Example of an NBA player prop bet
As an example, let’s look at a sample player prop for James Harden.
- Harden over 30.5 points (-110)
- Harden under 30.5 points (-110)
In this example, Harden has a line set on points and that line is set at 30.5 points. You must decide if Harden will get over or under 30.5 points. If you bet the over, you’re betting on Harden getting 31 points or more. If you bet the under in this example, you’re rooting for Harden to score 30 points or fewer. If Harden gets 31 points or higher, bettors who wagered on the over would win. If his points come in at 30 or fewer, the bet would lose.
Oftentimes, you’ll find the odds on NBA player props to be even on both sides. Sticking with the example we just used involving Harden, you might be looking at something such as over 30.5 (-110) and under 30.5 (-110). Both sides of the bet have odds of -110 in this case. Rather than adjust the price of the odds, sportsbooks will change the over/under line in a case like this.
Types of NBA player props
In basketball, it’s common to see player props for points, rebounds, and assists, or some combination of those three. You can also sometimes find lines for steals, turnovers, three-pointers made, double-doubles, triple-doubles, and more. With so many stats and combinations of stats available for NBA games, there are many varieties for NBA player props.
You will find that they offer props for all positions, and they even include bench players, if they have a somewhat significant role on the team. You will most likely find that all positions have points props offered, but the availability of assists, rebounds, blocks, and steals tend to vary based on the player and can correlate with a player’s position.
For example, you will often find props for assists be the most common prop offered for point guards, but you won’t see an assists prop for a center. Shooting guards and small forwards usually see a mix of available props and the offering depends on the style of player that they are. Some unique shooting guard props would be over or under 4.5 three-pointers made for Steph Curry, for example.
Power forwards commonly offer points, rebounds, and blocks. At times, you will see players at this position that have high rebound rates also have double-double props listed.
The center position will offer the most block props of any position. NBA centers are the rim protectors in the league, so this makes sense. They will almost always include rebound props and offer points for centers as well.
It’s worth noting that basketball has become more position-less in the new era we are in and props have evolved as such. More teams are rostering more versatile, all-around players and centers are shooting more three-pointers. Look at Anthony Davis, for example. Knowing how the NBA is currently constructed, don’t be surprised by some of the player props you might see.
When it comes to NBA player props, there are often two types of ways the prop bets are offered. One is a straight-forward over/under – will the player go over or under the posted line? Another is a binary yes/no prop bet – will the player do this thing or won’t he? An example of a yes/no player prop is ‘Will Ben Simmons make a three-pointer?’ or ‘Will Russell Westbrook post a triple-double?’
Season-long NBA prop bets
You can also find NBA props and player props in the futures market. An NBA futures bet is a wager on a future NBA event. Most commonly, it is a bet placed on the outcome of an NBA event in the current or upcoming season. An NBA future prop or player prop is a bet placed on the outcome of an NBA prop or player prop in the current or upcoming season.
These are just like in-game prop bets, but they cover the course of a season. They have over/under bets on points, assists, rebounds, and more.
How to bet NBA futures, props, and player props
As sports betting becomes legal and regulated in more places, the offering for is only going to grow for NBA futures, props, and player props. Prior to the overturning of the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 2018, Nevada was the only place one could legally sports bet. That’s all changed and more states are regulating sports betting.
States like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Michigan have hopped on the legal sports betting train, with plenty more states to come. What this means for avid sports bettors is that there are more places to place sports bets, which means more places to bet NBA futures, props, and player props.
For how to bet NBA futures, props, and player props, head to your local brick-and-mortar sportsbook and register for an online/mobile sportsbook to get started. View the options on offer for NBA futures, props, and player props and decide which bets you want to make. Although many residents of the U.S. don’t live in a state with legalized sports betting, a quick trip to a state with regulated sports betting is as easy as it’s ever been.
For those who want to practice before putting real money down, we’d suggest using the free-to-play SharpSide sports betting app.
Use the SharpSide app for NBA player props
If you’re new to NBA player props, you can start out by using the SharpSide sports betting app to get acclimated to these types of bets. The app is completely free to play and is available for iOS and Android devices. Plus, you can win real prizes for free through the various contests that may run within the app.
Under the NBA section within the app, each game usually has a couple of dozen player props available, so check those out when NBA is running.
Advantage of betting on NBA futures and props
- Entertainment value: With any sports bet, there is an added level of entertainment built-in. Not only are you watching teams and players compete, but there’s a chance you can have some skin in the game and win money, which increases the entertainment value. NBA futures bets can provide season-long entertainment with big paydays. NBA props and player props, can provide more immediate entertainment value that isn’t tied directly to the outcome of a game. You might be a LeBron James fan but not necessarily a fan of the Los Angeles Lakers. Or maybe you were a fan of Zion Williamson at Duke but don’t care too much for the New Orleans Pelicans. Betting on player props for James or Williamson can allow you to root for the player without caring too much about the team’s results.
- Value due to inefficiency: The NBA futures market can be pretty pinned down, but props and player props are still on the newer side to both bettors and oddsmakers. With props and player props being newer, there are greater chances bettors can find inefficient lines to take advantage of. This means value and you never want to pass up value in sports betting.
- Fade the public: For NBA futures, public bettors like to gravitate towards the favorites, so there can be value elsewhere on the board that pays more. With props and player props, the public loves to bet for things to happen and on overs, which means the odds can be weighted that way and provide value to those who want to bet against or take the under. Unpopular bets are some of the best ways to fade the public and you can do that quite a bit when betting NBA futures, props, and player props.
- Player props are great for DFS players: The world of DFS isn’t getting any easier, but many of the same strategies and research elements can be applied to betting player props. If you find yourself hitting a wall or ceiling in DFS, check out the world of NBA player props where you can apply some of the same tools and turn yourself into a profitable bettor.
For more on NBA betting, check out SharpSide’s NBA Betting Tips article where we run through more strategy and advice for those looking to wager on the NBA.
As always, be sure to check back here for more on how to conquer NBA futures and prop bets!