When betting on the NBA, bettors have multiple choices every day. You will find several different options on any one game, ranging from point spreads to totals to moneylines. The majority of wagers placed on the NBA use the point spread, however, there are times when you may find it better to play the moneyline.
Parlay betting in the NBA (as in other sports) this is the technique of combining multiple game picks into one single wager. Parlays often called, exotic wagers are not too exotic, more thrilling than a straight-up moneyline or over/under wager, but not so thrilling that bettors are reaching for a dose of anxiety medication.
The upsides are many, including the lack of juice, the high potential for bet-hedging but most importantly the fact that there’s a little risk for a potential big win. The main downside is that you will have to pick more than one game successfully, in a market where picking just one contest the right way can sometimes seem impossible.
Parlays have odds based on the size of the pool of games picked and the preferences of the bookmaker a bettor buys the parlay from. Generally speaking, parlay payouts in the NBA look something like this:
2 Teams 2/1
3 Teams 6/1
4 Teams 10/1
5 Teams 27/1
6 Teams 40/1
7 Teams 75/1
8 Teams 150/1
9 Teams 300/1
10 Teams 750/1
11 Teams 1,100/1
12 Teams 1,800/1
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The number next to the size of the parlay indicates the payout, so that a successful 3-team parlay pays $6 for every $1 wagered, 4-team pays $10 for every $1 wagered etc.
Yes, the larger payout is due to increased risk, something that’s always the case in sports betting (or casino betting for that matter). But the biggest payouts on parlays (as much as 1,800/1 for a successful 12-team parlay bet) carry the biggest risk, and a simple 2- or 3-team parlay wager can be many times more valuable than individual bets on those two or three games.
With the example previously shown, a bettor could parlay the Celtics and Bulls picks into a single bet for a potential 6/1 payout. If either of the picks fails, the whole wager fails – there’s your increased risk.
Parlays can get a little more complicated when placed on multiple odds lines – bettors are able to place parlays on the moneyline, over/under, and point spread, all in the same bet. Parlays can be endlessly interchangeable, which is another big part of their charm, and the reason they can be approached somewhat strategically.
Do not go Overboard With Parlays
The more parlays you play, the least chances you have to win. Yes, the return will be higher with more picks on the same bet but statistically, it is very unlikely to win a parlay. For this reason more experienced bettors stick to 3-team parlays. In a 3-team parlay you are getting good returns and you can still get big profits. The difference is that your risks are much more manageable and you can actually make a profit.
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