The National Basketball Association (NBA) is the greatest professional basketball league on the planet if not the universe, and this year’s outing (the 74th) will give NBA punters a chance to win some ‘big b-ball bucks.’ So stick around for our ultimate guide on betting on the NBA in 2020 plus the types of bets you can place online.

The regular season kicks off on October 22 this year and runs until April 15, 2020. That will be followed by the playoffs on April 18 before the main event in June 2020, i.e. the highly anticipated NBA Finals. The Finals will garner the attention of tens of millions of basketball fans and NBA punters alike from the US and beyond.

30 NBA Teams are Preparing to do Battle

As the 30 NBA teams prepare to do battle, all eyes will be on defending champs, the Toronto Raptors, who ironically are the only team in the league from Canada. That’s why USA basketball fans will be eager to see the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy returned to the ‘land of the free and the home of the brave.’

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If you’re new to the NBA, here are a few basics. It comprises two 15-team conferences – the Western Conference and the Eastern Conference. The top eight teams from each make it to the playoffs and are seeded 1 to 8 in ‘bracket.’

They play each other and advance accordingly. So in the conference semi-finals, the 1-8 matchup winners faces the 4-5 winner and the 2-7 winner faces the 3-6 winner and so on until last team in each conference face off in the NBA Finals.

You have 82 Chances to Grow your Stash of Cash

Each NBA season comprises a total of 82 games (3936 minutes of glorious game time) or as we like to say 82 opportunities to ‘grow your stash of cash’ provided you beat the odds and bet right. So get ready for what should be a nail-biting season.

Of course, for those who prefer gambling with instant reward instead of waiting 48 minutes for a game to end there are dozens of online casinos that will gladly give you an opportunity of instant wins.

Before we dive into the betting guide, here’s the biggest tip or piece of advice we can give you; to become a successful NBA punter in the long term always bet the ‘numbers’ and not the team.

In other words keep any personal preferences or emotional attachments you have for certain teams or players out of the betting equation no matter how much you love or support them. Numbers don’t lie, but emotional betting decisions can trip you up.

NBA 2020 Finals Winner Odds

Right, let’s get down to business. In terms of the NBA outright winner odds i.e. the NBA Title Odds for 2020, the team leading the way amongst bookmakers (at time of writing) is the Milwaukee Bucks with 5/1 odds to win the whole enchilada.

In joint second place with 7/1 odds are the Toronto Raptors, Los Angeles Lakers and Golden State Warriors.  Third on the list are the Houston Rockets with 8/1 odds, then the Philadelphia 76ers at 10/1 and the Denver Nuggets at 12/1.

The teams currently scraping the bottom of the NBA outright winner bucket include the Minnesota Timberwolves and New Orleans Pelicans at 150/1, the Washington Wizards and Charlotte Hornets at 200/1 and in last place the Cleveland Cavaliers, Phoenix Suns and Memphis Grizzlies at 250/1.

So if you’re a fan of the Grizzlies, Suns or the Cavaliers, the chances of watching them drinking out of the Larry O’Brien cup come June 2020 are pretty slim to none.

Now, of course, the odds above are for the outright winner of the 2020 NBA season, but there are many other NBA bets you can sink your teeth into during the 8-month long league including Money Lines, Point Spreads, Over/Unders, Parlays and Propositions.

Here’s a brief explanation of each.

Point Spreads

By ‘betting the spread’ you’re betting on the margin of victory. For example, Team A -6.5 and Team B +6.5. Team A is the favorite and team B the underdog. So if you bet Team A you’re betting that it will win by 7 points or more. By betting Team B, you’re betting that it will either win the game or lose by less than 7 points.

Money Lines

This is one the simplest and most common of all NBA bets where you choose the team you feel will win a particular game. With money line bets the favorite always has a ‘negative’ value and the underdog a ‘positive’ value. For example, Team A -160 (wager $160 to win $100) vs. Team B +120 (wager $100 to win $120).


With this bet you wager on whether the actual combined points scored in a game will be more than (Over) the total predicted by a bookmaker or less than (Under) the total. For example, say a bookmaker posts an Over / Under bet for a particular NBA game of 195. If the actual score was 180 and you bet the Under, you’d win.


With a parlay bet you must choose two or more basketball teams scheduled to play in different games. All of your picks must then win their respective games for you to win. The more teams or legs a parlay bet has, the bigger its pay outs. Similarly, the fewer legs a parlay bet has, the greater your chances will be of winning.


A proposition or ‘prop’ bet in basketball involves an occurrence or non-occurence of an event that is not related to the final result. An example of a ‘player prop’ bet is Player A to score over 23.5 points. If he scores 24 points or more, you win the bet. An example of a ‘game prop’ bet is Team B will be the first to score 15 points.

A Final Free Throw

For our NBA basketball betting buck, the Golden State Warriors will be the team to beat in 2020. Even though the Warriors have all but been written off by many NBA betting fans on account of losing so many top players (like Kevin Durant, DeMarcus Cousins and Andre Iguodala to name a few), there is life left in the dubs yet.