How to Bet on NBA Props

Learn the basics of prop betting, including how to bet on NBA props, how to read NBA odds on props, and tips and strategies for the best NBA picks.

Prop betting has emerged as one of the most popular and fun ways to bet on the NBA. The rise in popularity of fantasy sports, and especially daily fantasy sports has also added to the increase in popularity in prop betting as fans and experts alike enjoy betting on specific players instead of teams. If you are betting on a spread, you are predicting which team will win a game, but with NBA prop betting, you are usually betting on whether a player will score more or less than 22.5 points or whether someone will grab more or less than 10.5 rebounds.

NBA Player Props: What Are They?

The most common types of player props revolve around individual statistics for most key players in an NBA game.

So, for a hypothetical Pelicans-Knicks game, the NBA player props you can bet on include how many points RJ Barrett will score (over/under 18.5), how many rebounds Julius Randle will grab (10.5), how many three-pointers Brandon Ingram will make, and a plethora of other stats.

These days proposition betting has gotten so popular, that you can often choose between hundreds of bets on a single, ordinary NBA game.

You can also bet on whether a player will record a triple-double (Julius Randle +850), whether Brandon Ingram or RJ Barrett will score more points, and whether Nerlens Noel or Zion Williamson will grab more rebounds.

You can generally bet on that traditional stats for the key five players on each team, essentially all of a game’s starters.

Some books offer more comprehensive player props than others, so it helps to shop around when looking for the best player props.

How many 3 pointers will Stephen Curry hit? | Sidelines
How many 3 pointers will Stephen Curry hit? | Sidelines

What Types of NBA Player Prop Bets Exist?

If you want to bet on NBA player props, there are a huge number of different options for a person to bet on: how many points a player will score, how many rebounds a player will grab, how many assists a player will have, rebounds and assists combined, points, rebounds and assists combined, number of steals, and number of three-pointers made.

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Points: Predict how many points a player will score in a specific game. Example: Will Zion Williamson score more or less than 26.5 points against the Knicks?

Rebounds: Predict how many rebounds a player will have in a specific game. Example: Will Kevin Durant have over/under 6.5 rebounds against the Heat?

Assists: Predict how many assists a player will have in a specific game. Example: Will Buddy Hield have over/under 2.5 assists against the Mavericks?

Rebounds and Assists combined: Here you are betting on how many combined rebounds and assists a player will have in a specific game. Example: Will Elfrid Payton have over/under 8.5 combined rebounds and assists against the Pelicans?

Points, Rebounds, and Assists Combined: This adds points score into the mix, combined with total rebounds and assists. Example: Will Khris Middleton have over/under 31.5 combined points/rebounds/assists against the Celtics?

Steals: Predict how many steals a player will have in a specific game. Example: Will Kawhi Leonard have over/under 1.5 steals against the Magic?

Three-Pointers Made: Predict how many three pointers a player will have in a specific game. Example: Will Trae Young have over/under 2.5 three-pointers made against the Pacers?

PropShop Over/Under Bet | Sidelines

What Are Long-Term NBA Prop Bets?

While most prop-bets revolve around the statistics in a single game, long-term prop bets might involve those same statistics over multiple games, or even the entire season.

Instead of betting on whether Stephen Curry will score 30.5 points in his upcoming game against the Rockets, a long-term bet might ask you whether Curry will average 30.5 over the course of the entire season.

Long-term props are less common than daily props, so you might need to search for a specific site that offers a variety of them.

What are the Common NBA Prop Betting Strategies?

There are a number of popular betting strategies that have become popular with the proliferation of online prop betting.

We will go through the five best NBA prop betting strategies and give you different ideas for betting on NBA props.

1. Finding a player who is going to increase his minutes
Suppose Eric Bledsoe has an over/under of 11.5 points for an upcoming game. However, Lonzo Ball, the Pelicans other starting guard, is questionable for this game.

You might want to ride Bledsoe’s point total, in the anticipation that Ball might not play. If Ball plays, it’s still a 50-50 bet, but if he sits, then you are looking at increased minutes and production for Bledsoe.

2. Grouping your bets together
If you are feeling optimistic about how a specific team will perform in an upcoming game, you might want to group many prop bets together.

For instance, if you think the Hawks are going to be able to score at will against the Pistons, you might bet the over on many Atlanta players totals, like Trae Young’s points and assists totals and Clint Capela’s rebound numbers.

3. Take advantage of specific matchups
Sometimes it’s less about what teams are good at, and more about exploiting weaknesses in prop betting.

So, if a team with elite big men, say, the Philadelphia 76ers, are playing a team that struggles against big men, like the San Antonio Spurs, you might want to look extra hard at Joel Embiid’s points and rebounds totals for that game.

4. Avoid “lucky” bets
There is definitely money to be made in betting on points and rebounds props, but the lower a statistical average is, the more likely it is to experience extreme randomness.

For instance, only two players in the NBA currently average 2 or more steals per game. That means every other player in the league averages between 0 and 1.9 steals per game.

Any bet on over/under 0.5 steal, or 1 steal per game is just a shot in the dark. There’s no way to accurately predict how many steals someone will have in a given game, so you should limit your basketball prop bets to more reliable metrics.

5. Pay more attention to previous head-to-head matchups
Even more so than when betting on the spread of an NBA game, you can use recent head-to-head data between two teams to your advantage when making NBA prop bets.

Just because the Blazers beat the Lakers two weeks ago does not mean they are going to upset them again, but if Damian Lillard scored 38 against the Lakers in that game, they likely have not devised an answer for him since that game.

Try Out These Betting Strategies Yourself

Now that you know all about NBA player prop betting, it’s time to make some prop bets.

Remember prop betting is about sorting through dozens of betting options, crunching the numbers and picking the best totals for you.

Search through the upcoming NBA player props to see what your options are, then do your research and get ready to place your bets.

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