NBA Teasers

NFL teasers bets get so much ink and are much more popular with sports bettors but many forget that teasers are also available for NBA basketball betting. Many handicappers and betting websites will advise you to avoid basketball teasers. For the most part, they’re right. Compared to the advantages that bettors can have from betting wrong teasers in the NFL with +EV odds, NBA teasers don’t give bettors the same automatic edge. However, there is money to be made with NBA teasers if players shop odds and understand the spots that make them profitable.

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Understanding NBA Basketball Teasers

Like NFL teasers, the parameters for NBA basketball teasers are ultimately up to the oddsmakers. Instead of the 6-pt teasers that are standard for football teasers, most basketball teasers begin at 4 points and end at around 5 points. Basketball teasers that are 8 or 10 points may also be called “sweetheart teasers”. However, sites like 5Dimes, offer basketball teasers as high as 16 points. The most commonly wagered basketball teaser is 5 points. Most bettors typically bet basketball teasers between 4 and 6 points. However, there still may be +EV options for players at 5.5-point teasers and above, it all depends on the odds offered.

NBA Basketball Teaser Odds – Explained

Like the NFL, NBA teasers can be utilized on both sides and totals. Here’s a two-team teaser 5-pt teaser in action for a typical NBA game:

NBA Odds Before Teaser

  • Chicago Bulls +2.5
  • Atlanta Hawks -7

NBA Odds After Teaser

  • Chicago Bulls +7.5
  • Atlanta Hawks -2

For those that have experience with teasers and the basics, there shouldn’t be any issues with understanding the above example. Basketball teasers work the same way as football teasers and also have similar rules when deciding pushes or bets that are no action.

For example, most basketball teasers will typically reduce when a game pushes, is canceled or is graded no action. If you bet a three-team teaser, and one of the bets ties, the teaser is reduced to two teams and adjusted accordingly. Some NBA betting sites will offer “ties win” teasers, where if one or both legs push on a two-team teaser, the bet will be graded as a winner.

NBA Teaser Strategy

Betting NBA teasers profitably requires some patience from bettors and is dependent on online shopping. As far as calculating past results from NBA games, that’s already been done for us by the guys at BoydsBets.com. Although the above link was written in 2012, the guys at Boyd’s went back all the way to 1995 to analyze all the NBA games since then to see what situations offered the most profitable teaser opportunities for bettors. There is more than enough of a sample size and some valuable data.

The data comes to several conclusions when it comes to betting NBA teasers:

  1. Teasing home favorites isn’t typically profitable and should generally be avoided due to the fact they are heavy public bets.
  2. Home underdogs also show plenty of value but are too infrequent. Home underdogs of 10-13 points show a nice win rate, but these are simply too rare to count on throughout an NBA season.
  3. Road underdogs and teasers aren’t especially profitable. These teams are expected to lose and adding points to their total doesn’t help improve their win rate much.
  4. Road favorites offer the most profitable situations for bettors. Teams that are favored between 9-14 points have an excellent winning percentage with 4 to 5 point teasers.

The most frequent margin of victory in the NBA lies between 5-7 points. By using teasers on numbers that get us into this range, we’ll have a much better chance at profitability.

NBA Teaser Odds

Opportunities may exist outside of this range depending on the odds offered. When we specifically look road favorites, teams favored by 9-14 points consistently provide a distinct advantage. If you look at the data available at Boyd’s, you will see that in these situations, the results trump the breakeven percentages. Though the margin between breakeven and profitability is small, that’s all we need to make these bets +EV.

nba bettingBecause of these slim margins, it’s important to line shop and only bet NBA teasers with the best prices. As mentioned in Boyd’s article, the two NBA betting sites that offer the best odds for NBA teasers are 5Dimes and Bookmaker.eu. Though the article was written in 2013, this remains the same today. An account at one of these sportsbooks is an absolute must if you’re going to dive into NBA teasers. 5Dimes allows bettors to choose a “Ties Win” option, and their teaser odds are much better overall compared to other US-facing sites. Their odds between 4-5 point teasers are the best around.

Bookmaker doesn’t compare to 5Dimes in terms odds in regards to 4-5 team teasers but is excellent on 5.5 and 6 points teasers. However, their odds for 6.5 are unmatched online. 5Dimes is the best option if you can’t afford to hold a balance at more than one book, but Bookmaker is worth using as well.

In Conclusion – NBA Basketball Teasers

The vast majority of betting NBA teasers are unprofitable. Not only do bettors have to pick the right range of numbers to target when betting teasers, but they also need bet with the appropriate odds to make these small margin bets profitable. Shopping odds relentlessly and utilizing the teasers markets of 5Dimes will put into the category of a winner if you look to target road favorites and the rarely seen home underdogs of 10-13 points. Without appropriate odds and an idea of which situations to target, NBA teasers are unprofitable markets. The masses continue to throw their money down the drain betting –EV teasers, don’t make the same mistake.