NBA Tip-Off Time Bets

Written by: Joseph Falchetti, Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert
Last updated:
4 minute read
NBA Tip-Off Time Betting

The NBA tipoff is the beginning of a basketball game, the jump ball has been around since the early days of the game in 1891, you’ll see it at the beginning of extra periods as well, and settling other game situations.

The NBA is one of the few sports where new information is constantly being reported up until tipoff, this makes the sport unique and brings a lot of betting opportunities.

If a key player is reported to be missing a game minutes before the tip-off – this gives bettors a chance to bet the underdog and profit considerably from it.

You might find excellent +EV wagering opportunities when you utilize the information correctly, and that’s exactly what you’d be missing if you’re not taking advantage of tip-off time bets.

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Profit From Late Scratches In NBA Games

Late Scratches Betting Opportunity

The NBA is full of late scratches, the league is notorious for guys being scratched out of nowhere, even if they hadn’t previously shown up on the injury report or were thought to be only battling a minor issue.

Coaches regularly rest players as well. They may announce this earlier in the day, but often it’ isn’t announced till close to tipoff.

Gregg Popovich’s San Antonio Spurs regularly rest his aging superstars, giving them multiple nights off all year, particularly late in the season.

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr rested his stars frequently as well. Later in the season, he regularly rested his starters later in the year.

The Warriors finished the season with a 67-15 record in his first year on the job (2014-15), the best record in the NBA that season and in franchise history.

With injury issues always a factor that often needs to be determined in pregame warm-ups and trends that coaches will be sitting players down the stretch, this offers up hundreds of opportunities for bettors throughout the season.

How To Profit Off NBA Tip-Off Time

NBA Tipoff Time Bet

To best take advantage of late-breaking news, we recommend that bettors stick around their computer (or mobile device) in the hour leading up to tipoff for the first slate of games and if possible until the final game of the evening begins.

Remember that scratches can come out of nowhere in the NBA and even players who aren’t questionable to play may not be suiting up for whatever reason. Several times this isn’t known until minutes before the tipoff time.

With the internet, sports information is available 24 hours a day. Twitter is an excellent tool to keep track of the latest news, but bettors can go further. is a subscription service, but one of the best when it comes to tracking late-breaking news. It’s also extremely helpful for analysis and is often utilized by daily fantasy NBA players.

We highly recommend getting a subscription. It’s not only excellent for getting the news first but offers tons of tools to understand the game at a higher level.

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Profiting Off Late Breaking NBA News

NBA Late Breaking News Profiting

When the news reaches the oddsmakers, they begin to adjust their odds on the game or pull it off the board until they can readjust.

If you act quickly, you may be able to place a bet before the odds are taken off the board or updated.

For instance, say the Memphis Grizzlies are playing the Houston Rockets. Word breaks late that three of the Grizzlies starters will be out with the flu.

Let’s assume that Memphis is the better team for the betting sites, and they’re at home. They’re -5 favorites over visiting Houston.

Upon receiving this news, we would immediately bet the Rockets +5 since they would be facing a short-handed Memphis team missing three of their starters.

This bet has immense value, and we’ve effectively beaten the books to the punch with late-breaking news. It also gives an opportunity to arbitrage with another bookmaker and lock in a profit if the game reopens with a different line.

Late Breaking News

The sad news is that it’s tough to beat the books on the main markets. Once the news break, they will usually have the game off the board and bettors won’t be able to bet before they adjust.

However, there are some markets where they are much slower to react, such as NBA player propositions, but these markets were particularly exploitable when it comes to late-breaking news.

Team propositions as well, but to a lesser extent. The sportsbooks also seem to adjust team propositions faster than player props.

One thing to understand about the NBA is that minutes and shots have to go somewhere. When a star player or even a sixth man is ruled out, this will result in more minutes for other players, which means more shots, rebounds, and overall production.

In basketball, minutes equal production, it’s that simple. Player propositions have smaller limits than the larger markets, but they’re often the last area that bookmakers adjust when it comes to late-breaking news.

Even extremely sharp sportsbooks may take 15-20 minutes to move these markets.

Final Thoughts on NBA Tip-Off Betting Opportunities

Profiting off sports betting isn’t easy, and neither is finding +EV wagers. By following the NBA and keeping an eye on injury reports, you will find rare opportunities that, for the most part, don’t exist in any other major professional sports.

There are sports related outlets that help with this type of prediction, but bettors may not have much time to place their wager before the odds change. Understanding how NBA late-breaking news affects odds will increase your edge.

Don’t Miss Our Complete NBA Betting Guide

About the Author

Joseph Falchetti

Joseph Falchetti

Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert

Joe is the author of the majority of sports betting pages on SBS and he serves as a gambling consultant to our content team. He's been mentioned on as a gaming analyst, and his articles have been linked by larger publications, such as the New York Times.

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