Betting on the NBA has surged in popularity in the US thanks to the proliferation of online sportsbooks surfacing across the country. From the hustle and bustle of the regular season to the razzmatazz surrounding the NBA Finals, it is no surprise bettors are flocking in their droves to place wagers.
In this comprehensive guide, we will give you the lowdown on the best betting sites in the USA, and convey what makes them stand out. From here, we will provide mini-reviews to highlight their strengths, as well as refer to the methods we use for measuring the top sportsbooks. As you will see, each sportsbook is well equipped to handle your needs. So, carry on reading to put yourself in the picture, and improve your chances of NBA betting success in the long term.
The Best Betting Sites List 2021
Before we get down to the nitty and gritty, here are the offers provided by the top online sportsbooks. We have illustrated this in an eye-catching table.
Best US Sportsbooks Reviewed
In the US, bettors are spoilt for choice as to where to place NBA wagers. In this section, we will provide an overview of the top 5 sportsbooks in a series of mini-reviews.
1. Bovada – Best Sportsbook for pre-match markets
If you are serious about the NBA, then Bovada ought to be your first port of call. From game parlays to prop builders, Bovada has its finger on the pulse. At Bovada, bettors are given the freedom to chance their arm on an extensive range of markets.
While there is an NBA live betting element to Bovada, the plethora of game lines will keep the most fervent NBA bettors satisfied. The odds are competitive, and filling in a betting slip is straightforward. Gamblers can find odds listed in the American, decimal, and fractional formats.
As a site that is exclusive solely to US residents, Bovada carries a lot of gravitas, and it is perhaps one of the safest sites around. Extra security measures have been installed to safeguard players online, and they have been on the scene for 10 years now.
- Wide range of pre-game markets
- Generous $750 welcome bonus
- Competitive odds
- Parlays and prop builders
- No live stream available
2. Betus – Best Sportsbook for cryptocurrency bonuses
Betus is one of the most versatile, and flexible around. For those that prefer to play using Bitcoin over more traditional payment methods, then they will be in luck here. The sign-up offer is extremely tempting, as it is a 150% crypto bonus which is split into a 100% bonus for the sportsbook, and a 50% casino bonus on top.
Aside from a wide range of prop markets, Betus also comes up trumps when it comes up to dishing out NBA markets for player futures, such as how many triple-doubles LeBron James, for example, may record in 2022.
There is also a special loyalty program available, and those with a registered account will be able to access these offers. Betus considers itself to be a bit of an all-rounder, and while basketball is featured prominently, those that wish to bet on other sports can do so freely. Among the other sports covered, including rugby, horse racing, and MMA.
- Decent player specials
- User-friendly platform
- Excellent cryptocurrency sign-up bonus
- Loyalty programme
- Live streaming unavailable
3. Intertops – Best betting site for customer support
With nearly 40 years experience in the sports betting industry, Intertops has been around for sometime now. And it has learned a thing or two about providing the best possible customer support. Every base is covered from calling the sportsbook to email, and live chat which is available 24/7, as well as communication via Skype.
While NBA is well served at Intertops, you can also find markets for the WNBA as well as the Olympics, although these tend to stick to the futures. The hottest bets section may also be appealing for bettors as Intertops carefully chooses some of the most intriguing NBA selections throughout the season to persuade bettors to part with their hard-earned cash.
What is impressive though, is the range of payment options available to bettors. E-wallets, such as ecoPayz, Skrill, and Neteller are available for deposits and withdrawals. Cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, and Litecoin can be used to fund your playing account.
- Hottest bets section
- Wide range of payment options for deposits and withdrawals
- Fully regulated site
- Halftime betting option
- No dedicated app
4. DraftKings – Best Sportsbook for NBA draft betting
While on the surface of it, DraftKings appears bland from a design perspective, don’t be fooled, as you will uncover some fantastic gems here. When it comes to NBA, DraftKings leaves nothing to chance. While NBA fans will be well catered for when it comes to the traditional game lines, and prop markets, the draft picks section makes it stand out from its rivals.
For those fans that want to keep tabs on how drafts will unfold, DraftKings is the home for this. Bets can be placed on who will be the 1st pick of the draft right through to the fifth pick. Within that, you can even locate odds for the exact draft position of certain players, which makes things even more exciting.
DraftKings is an officially licensed NBA betting partner, which means it is held in high regard, and it is one of the best sports betting sites around.
- Best for draft picks
- Extensive range of game lines and player props
- Official betting partner of the NBA
- Access to the latest stats
- Better odds available elsewhere
5. Fanduel – Best mobile betting site
Arguably one of the most attractive betting sites around from a design point of view, Fanduel is one of the sleekest around, and it has a reliable, and fast performing app that works on both iOS and Android devices.
Although it may not be the most widely accessible betting site as it is available in 10 different states, Fanduel runs a plethora of fabulous promotions for new and existing players. This includes a risk-free bet of up to $1000, and if your first bet loses, you will be credited with a refund within 72 hours.
For selected markets, you can get price boosts too which will hold sway with US bettors. There is also a referral section where you can get suggest a friend joins, and they will be provided with a unique referral link to sign up. Fanduel is aesthetically very pleasing, and as it is so easy to navigate your way around the site, it is geared towards the modern bettor.
Fanduel is one of the most complete online betting sites around, encompassing a wide range of sports, and it is continuing to attract new bettors.
- Well designed website
- Has native app for Android and iOS users
- Easy to navigate around the site, and place bets
- Risk free $1000 bet
- Daily fantasy teams
- Not widely accessible across the US
The US Sportsbooks Comparison
Before we get down to the nitty and gritty, here are the offers provided by the top 10 bookmakers. We have illustrated this in an eye-catching table.
How We Select the Top Betting Sites
At Basketballinsider, we like to scrutinize the top online sportsbooks to see what makes them tick. If you are a novice bettor, you will want to find a sportsbook that promises an enriching experience. So, with that in mind, we have judged the best sportsbooks on the following criteria:
Licensing & Security – This is crucial. The best sports betting sites will make every effort to safeguard their players online, and this entails having the latest SSL (Secure Socket Layer) measures installed, and the most reputable sites will be fully licensed and regulated. Those sites that have poor reviews or look dodgy should be avoided at all costs.
Range of markets – When it comes to betting on sport, and NBA in general, bettors want to be able to tuck into a wide range of prop markets aside from just the Moneyline before a crunch game. Those that have a deep range of selections will be held in high esteem.
Odds – Naturally, bettors want sustained success with their bets, but odds should always be competitive, and fair to keep bettors keen.
Free Bets & Bonuses – The best US sportsbooks will pull out all the stops to get you to sign up. Some of these will be very generous, and DraftKings’ $1000 risk-free bet, as well as Betus’ $150 cryptocurrency bonus, will be appealing to all newcomers.
Live Betting & Streaming – Bettors who like to see the live-action unfold will want access to the live betting markets. While it is not always easy to find betting sites that have a live stream, live betting markets should be the minimum threshold, and there should be plenty of markets to bet on in-play, and you should be allowed to cash out. Fanduel provides a Cash-Out facility where bettors can withdraw a stake in its entirety in real-time.
Usability on Desktop & Mobile – The top sportsbooks will have spent a lot of time investing in the digital side of the operation, so as to ensure there are no time lags, and that the site is responsive. Bettors want an intuitive site where they can easily place bets, especially if they are on the go, and in a rush to place their wagers. Fanduel comes up trumps here.
Special Features – For NBA, this may include prop or parlay builders, while for some, it could be Request A Bet, and being able to get in touch with a bookmaker via Twitter to find out prices for specific events. The special features will resonate with some bettors, especially if they are more adventurous with their wagers.
Customer service – Bettors want reassurance that they can contact a sportsbook day or night if they run into trouble. The best betting sites in the US will be easily contactable and can be done so in a variety of ways. Intertops, for example, can be reached through live chat, phone, email, and Skype, so they are a go-to bookmaker if you appreciate excellent customer service.
Guide to American Sportsbooks
The sites we have discussed so far in this guide are highly recommended, and they are well known within US betting circles. In the following sections, we will take a closer look behind the scenes to see how American sportsbooks operate. We will delve into the bonus element of US sportsbooks, payment methods, as well as the kinds of NBA markets you can explore.
Are Sportsbooks Legal in the US?
US-based sportsbooks have, at times, had a strained relationship with the law. While sports betting is deemed legal in some states, it is not widespread. Currently, just 10 states permit sports betting online. In 2011, the Supreme Court overturned the federal ban on sports betting, meaning states would be allowed to choose whether to legalize sports betting. In some cases, US citizens may have to traverse across the country purely to place NBA wagers.
In the graphic seen above, the states colored in green are those that tend to allow American-operated sportsbooks, though not every sportsbook is permitted in each ‘green’ state – you’ll have to double-check to ensure your preferred option is legal in your state of residence.
It’s for this exact reason that we often recommend offshore betting sites such as BetUS and MyBookie, which are available, by and large, nationwide.
Markets & Odds
Betting on the NBA is principally divided into three main market types – futures, game lines, and in-play betting. To help you get to grips with how to be successful with your NBA wagers, we will discuss each of them in a bit more depth.
For those that like to take a much longer view on the NBA, this market will suit them right to the ground. Over the course of a regular 82-game season, there will be plenty of twists and turns. With futures market, this is split into the team, and player dynamic. So, for example, you could have bet at the start of the 2020/21 campaign for the Milwaukee Bucks to be crowned champions, and Giannis Antetokounmpo to be crowned MVP (Most Valued Player).
There are some NBA sportsbooks that utilize Vegas odds, such as William Hill and BetMGM, and they tend to be quite prompt in advertising said odds.
Once the season is finished, you can locate odds for who will win the Eastern or Western Conference for the 2021/22 campaign. Of the 30 teams in the NBA, 15 will compete in the Eastern, and the other 15 in the Western Conference. With the futures, if you bet early on a rank outsider, it can be a case of holding your nerve, and sticking with your wager to see if it wins through. Markets are usually released up to three months before the new campaign begins. For example, Betonline has provided odds of +275 for the Brooklyn Nets to win the NBA Championship, while the Los Angeles Lakers, who lifted the title last year, are currently ranked second favorites to wrestle the title back.
Game Day Betting
While the futures are much longer-term in focus, game day betting is more short-sighted. Indeed, the easiest market for novice bettors to begin with, is the Moneyline. Here, Bovada bettors are simply required to predict who will win the match. The Moneyline odds will see the favorites denoted with a negative value, while the outsiders will have a positive sign attached. If we use the example of the NBA Finals above, the Phoenix Suns are favorites to take Game 5. As the Suns are highly fancied (63.6% chance of winning), for every $10 you wish to win bet on the Suns, you must risk $17.5 ($175 bet will win $100). There will also be a Moneyline to calculate any profits you may yield.
Alternatively, you may wish to have a go at the point spread market. In the NBA Finals, the Suns are -4.0 spread favorites. So, for your bet to be returned as a winning one, the Suns will have to win by four points or more. Most point spread bets will have a vig or expected value of -110, which means that for every $10 you wish to win, you need to risk $11. Vigs can ultimately be adjusted, and they vary from one bookmaker to another.
There is also the over/under points market. The best betting sites will be on top of this, and they will look at the offensive and defensive units of each side before determining what the total points should be. Basketball is a frenetic, as well as high-scoring game, and in the case of DraftKings, a total of Over/Under 218.5 points may be set for the Bucks and Suns.
A bet on the Over would need the final score see 219 points or more scored, while the Under needs 218 points or less to be registered across the four quarters. And like point spreads, both sides of the Over and Under have a vig attached.
Game betting and Props
The best online sportsbooks will have prop betting incorporated. Usually, within 24 hours of the tip-off, NBA betting sites will introduce the individual player markets, such as whether Chris Paul will drain 30 points or more, or how many three-pointers attempts Giannis will make. These kinds of bets also focus on team performances, such as the first team to score 15 points, or even a player’s combined points, rebounds, and assists. Doubles and triple-doubles are quite common, so it’s worth paying attention to the prices when they drop online.
With live betting, NBA bettors are placed at the heart of the action, and they assume full control of their wagers. Big blowout wins, while other teams may rally when facing big deficits after the first or second quarter. During games, odds will shorten or drift to reflect the events on the floor, and ultimately, it is a case of how brave bettors want to be. Some of the bookmakers mentioned will enable bettors to Cash Out their bets either fully or partially, so they can retain something from their initial stake.
Sportsbook Betting Bonuses
The best sportsbooks will boast some of the most tantalizing sign-up offers, and bonuses to whet the appetites of bettors. Below, are some of the most common types of promotions you may encounter.
These are the gateway to a bookmaker, and here, bettors are rewarded simply for signing up to a site. They are given bet credits, and no deposit is required to take part. Barstool, for example, automatically gives newly registered a $10 cash bonus which can be used for any sport. However, take note that you have to live in one of the named states in the terms and conditions in order to participate.
Risk free bets
For those intent on scooping big wins, risk-free bets are well worth checking out. MGM, for example, offers a $600 risk-free bet. Once you have placed a qualifying bet, which in this case is a minimum of $10, you will receive your losing wager back in free bets, so essentially a win-win. Similarly, Fanduel offers a risk-free bet of up to $1000 which is very generous indeed.
The best online sportsbooks in the US will also try to vie for the affections of their customers by promoting matched deposit offers. Sugarhouse, for example, allows bettors to get their deposit matched up to the value of $250. Here, you will want to make sure you can use this for the NBA market of your choice. You will also be given a promo code to claim the offer, and it is one of the most robust matched deposit offers around.
Also termed as enhanced odds or flash odds, a price boost is designed to create a buzz about a specific event. Odds will be priced up bigger than usual, and they can be quite eye-catching. This is common fare at somewhere like Fanduel.
Key Terms of Betting Bonuses
The prospect of wading through line after line of terms and conditions may seem rather arduous. However, at Basketball Insiders, we have decided to do some of the legwork for you, so here are some of the most common phrases relating to bonuses, and what they mean.
Wagering requirements – Here, bettors have to play through a bonus before they can withdraw any winnings. Playthrough requirements may be presented as 40x, so if you bet $20, you would need to spend $800 before being able to claim any winnings.
Minimum odds – Referring to the lowest odds you can bet to convert a bonus into cash, the best sportsbooks will typically hold minimum odds that range from 1.50 to 2.00.
Validity period – This is the time you have to use your bonus before it expires. Sportsbook should allocate enough time for these to be used, but typically bonus periods last from anywhere between 7 to 30 days.
Minimum deposit – This is the lowest amount you must deposit into your playing account before you can accept, and qualify for the bonus. Always be wary of what the minimum deposit is, otherwise you will be discounted from the offer.
Maximum winnings – The most you can win from any bonus offered. Limits are imposed, so as to protect the best sportsbooks, and ensure they continue to generate profits.
Mobile Sports Betting – Top Sportsbook Apps
Every effort is made by the best online sportsbooks to be technologically savvy, in order to ensure their mobile product replicates the desktop version. Coders will be frantically working around the clock, so as to present a user-friendly, and well-oiled app for bettors. With more bettors playing on the go, they want a responsive betting app that will allow them to place wagers as and when they want, as well as shore up their playing account.
From our extensive research, while William Hill is a world-famous brand and has a neat little app, Fanduel is the most aesthetically pleasing from a design perspective. Placing, and editing bets is seamless, and the mobile product is equally as effective as the desktop version.
New US Betting Sites
The gambling landscape is constantly shifting in the US, and with it, there are a wave of new betting sites to explore. Ultimately, these sites have to be granted a new license, but the ones that are currently in favor with bettors will have a wealth of special features, such as ‘Edit my bet’ or ‘Prop builders’ to give bettors room to customize their own wagers.
What will also make them stand out, is the strength of the odds, as well as the markets on offer. As we have seen, odds boost have been adopted by the best sportsbooks in the US, while those that provide Cash Out will appeal too. Fundamentally, the best sportsbooks will advertise juicy promotions, so as to captivate the attention of new bettors, and ultimately keep them at their site.
Payments at the Best Online Betting Sites
To stay relevant in a modern world, US bookmakers have had to be versatile. This is applicable when it comes to payment methods, and the most renowned sportsbooks will be well endowed with a wealth of options. Below, are just a few payment methods you can expect to encounter. Always remember, however, you may not be able to deposit and withdraw using the same payment methods, so check before proceeding.
Top Sports Betting Tips
When it comes to sports betting, more specially NBA betting, you will need to have a concrete strategy in place to improve your chances of success. Below are five betting tips to bear in mind:
Soak up tips – The best betting sites will have an army of in-house writers, who will write previews before tip-offs of big NBA games. Tap into their knowledge, and then apply it to your bets.
Keep records – Every bet should be carefully noted. Learn from which bets were successful, and which were less so, and then adjust accordingly.
Always budget – Regardless of whether you are a novice or more experienced bettor, stick to a budget, and don’t exceed it or it could lead to greater problems down the line.
Don’t overstretch yourself – Similar in many respects to the previous point, don’t be over ambitious in the markets you play. Start with the ones you feel most comfortable with, such as the Moneyline, before expanding your horizons.
Follow your head, not your heart – Betting can be quite emotionally charged, so don’t follow your gut, but instead, spend time conducting your own research and make an informed decision on your wagers.
How to Get Started with a Top Online Sportsbook
Signing up to a US sportsbook is quite a straightforward process. We show you how you can register with Bovada in our step-by-step guide:
Step 1: Once, you have entered the homepage of Bovada, head over to the top right-hand corner, and click the ‘Join’ button
Step 2: You will then be asked to create an account where you will need to supply details, such as your first name, mobile phone, as well as your email address.
Step 3: Then, you will be required to choose your preferred currency, whether it be dollars or crypto. Once, you have filled this in, then you need to confirm you agree to the terms of service before hitting the ‘Register’ button.
Step 4: After you have filled in all the sections, you will be able to go into the cashier section. You can top up your playing account, and bet as you wish.
The online sportsbook scene in the US is vibrant. More bettors are now flocking to bookmakers to engage with NBA, and they are reaping the rewards. The sportsbooks mentioned in this guide are fully licensed, and regulated, and they deliver a truly immersive betting experience. We believe you will be blown away by what Fanduel has to offer both, especially with their whopping risk free bet offer. If you have enjoyed what you have read, then check out our recommended sportsbooks, and have a go for yourself.