Betting the side and/or total of an NBA game is the norm but player props are growing increasingly popular for those who like to try something different on the betting menu. Let’s check out what a player prop is and how to identify value in these wagers using the OddsTrader app.
What’s a Player Prop?
All of the best online sportsbooks found right here at OddsTrader, will have a full NBA betting menu including team and player props sometimes found under “specials” in the NBA section. If you have ever wondered about player props then we are pleased to tell you they are easy to bet on and can be an excellent opportunity to fatten your bankroll.
On a given night you will find a great number of player props and NBA odds. For example, the night game between the Kings and the Lakers on January 18th has an opening line that look something like this:
- LeBron James Total Points Over/Under 33 ½ (Over: -125, Under: -105)
This means that you can bet LeBron ending the game with over or under 33 ½ points. If you bet over then you would pay $125 to win $100 but if you bet under it would be $105 to win $100. As you can see, the over is slightly favored as indicated by -125.
With LeBron James chasing the NBA’s all-time scoring record and a favorable matchup against the Kings we like the over. Since odds change throughout the day, we can use the OddsTrader app to look for the best line. In this case, we can see that BetMGM (check our BetMGM Review) currently offers the Over at -120 juice. However, while shopping around we notice that Bet365 has the same odds but is priced at -110.
There are also other player props that include total assists, rebounds, steals, and even blocked shots. There is never any shortage of betting options but choosing the right one is the trick. Like betting on a side or a total, doing your due diligence before plunking down your money is the key.
How to Bet Player Props
The actual wagering is as simple as it gets. The oddsmakers offer a list of props in categories we’ve previously discussed like points, rebounds, assists, steals, etc.… and from there you basically go over or under the posted total on each player.
Of course, the totals will vary from player to player because there are superstars, starters, and backups. The totals assigned to each player will largely reflect that player’s season average but it will also take into account the team he is playing and how efficient they may be at containing the kind of threat he poses.
For instance, if a player relies on his three-point prowess to get points but the team he is playing owns an excellent perimeter defense then that could markedly curtail his points for that game. Therefore, a bet on under his point total might be a wise wager to make.
But before you do, research his last several games against this team and see how he fared. Then take it one step further and see if his average is appreciably different at home or in the opponent’s arena. Where is he playing this game – home or away?
Lastly, make sure that the roster he is playing against is relatively the same one he faced in previous meetings. Does the opposition have injuries, players who previously did an excellent job defending his perimeter shots but are out for this game? It doesn’t matter what the jersey looks like, it’s who’s wearing it that counts so do your homework and find out who will be defending your prop player.
If, after evaluating the entire situation, you are not as confident in the prop as you were before then pass on it. Remember, not every prop has value and some are difficult to figure out so move on, there are many other opportunities to make money with the proper betting strategy.
One last angle you may want to consider is perusing the player props on a big underdog. The average bettors will be so consumed with betting over on points, assists, and rebounds on the superstars from the heavy favorite that they will completely ignore the player props on the underdog. These props can be loaded with value because there isn’t enough action on them to move the needle and they are just waiting to be exploited.
In this case, the big favorite could be a team that is so loaded with offensive talent that they don’t pay much attention to defense, and specifically, often leave the paint uncontested. In that case, look to the rebound leader on the underdog because chances are he will have plenty of his fair share of opportunities to score from down low and pile up the points.
So make sure to do your homework, bet reasonably, and use player props as a way to make money even if you have no opinion on the game itself! And remember to check back for more content at the OddsTrader blog. Happy betting!