NBA Tipoff Time: An Opportunity For The NBA Gambler
The NBA is one of the few sports where new information is constantly being reported up until tipoff. This makes the sport unique from the other three professional sports in the United States and provides excellent +EV wagering opportunities for bettors if they utilize the information correctly.
There’s very rarely an injury that keeps a hockey player out before an NHL game, and while many NFL players are game-time decisions, these situations are always factored into the oddsmakers line long before Sunday. MLB lineups are released hours before game time, and there are rarely any players scratched once they’re released.
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Late Scratches In The NBA Games
This is not the case in basketball. The NBA is full of late scratches for a variety of reasons, something that is commonplace every night. In fact, 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 also 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 need 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.
Why NBA Tip Off Times Information Is Useful
Unlike the other major sports in the United States, basketball is a game that can be dominated by one player. It’s not to say that a quarterback, wide receiver, or running back can’t have a massive impact on a team, but as we’ve seen throughout the years, one elite level player can lead a team to the finals in the NBA.
Players sitting out will affect the point spread, NBA moneyline and totals markets, along with NBA player and team propositions, which are offered at just about every major sportsbook in the US market.
NBA Tipoff Time
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.
Bettors may already have guys to keep an eye on before they began looking at news for updates. Players with nagging injuries that may or may not suit up should already be on the radar screen. Remember, however, 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. There are plenty of times where this isn’t known until just a few minutes before the specified game tips.
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. Gametime Decision is a free site and application that allows players to view twitter feeds and follow individual players automatically. BasketballMonster.com 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.
Profiting Off Late Breaking NBA News
As soon as the news reaches the oddsmakers, they will begin to adjust their odds on the game or will pull it off the board completely 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 say in this example that Memphis is the better team in the minds of the sportsbooks, 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. The same bet can be used on moneylines and if you know what to look for, game totals and team totals.
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. We discuss NBA player propositions deeper in our article dedicated to them, 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.
In Conclusion – NBA Tip Off Times
Profiting off sports betting isn’t easy, and neither is finding +EV wagers. By following the NBA and keeping an eye on injury reports, bettors will find rare opportunities that, for the most part, don’t exist in any other the major professional sports.
As always, the more knowledgeable about the game, the easier it is to gauge the value of late breaking news. 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. Being able to identify quickly how late breaking news affects betting odds will only increase your edge.