How are NBA Odds Actually Calculated?

How Are NBA Odds Actually Calculated?

Whether you wager on NBA games because you're passionate about betting or just because you want to support your favourite team, you may have wondered about the processes that create the odds you are offered by sportsbooks.

After all, the odds for different teams can change by the minute, while those participating in spread bets will often find totally different spreads depending on which bookmakers they use.

Some might feel that NBA betting odds are just a form of guesswork, but this is rarely the case. Rather, sportsbooks take into account a vast range of data points in order to calculate the most accurate and reliable odds possible on a minute-by-minute basis. Here are the main factors that go into calculating and generating NBA odds. 

Squad Strength and Player Performance

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the most detailed NBA predictions and odds are based on squad strength and player performance. However, this goes far beyond points and plays. Odds are usually calculated via complex algorithms that use hundreds of data points, including injuries, player style, passes, defense, and just about every other on-field factor you can think of. 

Play History

When calculating the odds of a team winning outright or determining the spread, you need to look at who they are up against. Odds are often calculated based on the track record that a particular team might have in historical games against the opponent they are due to face-off against. Bookies will look at the factors that caused success or failure in previous games and calculate up-to-date NBA odds accordingly. 

Field Conditions

Did you know that the weather and the grass on the field can influence odds? It is hardly news that weather can impact a team's performance, with cold, heat, rain, and mud all tilting the odds in different directions. Many professional bookmakers will look at weather forecasts for the game ahead and compare those predicted conditions with player performance, to see if there are any patterns to observe and whether a particular team might fare better or worse in certain conditions. 

Other Sportsbooks

Sportsbooks do not operate in a vacuum. This is why the odds you will find from sportsbook to sportsbook do not vary very much (although spreads can vary significantly) - all bookmakers will check what other bookies are thinking and factor this into their own odds calculations. By consulting what other platforms are doing, it is easier for a sportsbook to determine that their own odds are accurate and fair.

The Public 

Finally, it's important to note that you also play a role in the calculation of odds. All bookmakers pay close attention to public opinion when drawing up their final odds. It might be that the public sees something that bookmakers have missed or the simple fact that teams playing on their home turf surrounded by their fans tend to perform better. Either way, the public always plays an important role when calculating NFL odds.

These are the main factors that go into the generation of NFL odds, so keep these in mind next time you are shopping around for spreads. 

Loading...

NBA Headlines

NBA Predictions & Picks

Thumbnail Grizzlies vs. Lakers NBA Prediction The Grizzlies are currently 6-point road underdogs in L.A. on Sunday night where they’ll take on the 0-2 Lakers at 9:30 p.m. ET. Will Memphis at least cover while...
Thumbnail Suns vs. Trail Blazers Saturday Prediction The Suns find themselves as underdogs on Saturday night in Portland where they’ll take on the Trail Blazers at 10:00 p.m. ET. Will Phoenix cover or is...
Thumbnail Suns vs. Lakers NBA Prediction Two teams looking for their first wins of the season will meet in L.A. on Friday night when the Lakers host the Suns at 10:00 p.m. ET. With the total sitting at 220.5,...
Thumbnail Clippers vs. Warriors NBA Prediction The Warriors will look to improve to 2-0 on the new season when they host the Clippers at 10:00 p.m. ET on Thursday. Golden State is laying 3.5 points and with this...
Thumbnail Nuggets vs. Suns NBA Prediction The Nuggets and Suns open their new seasons against each other at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, AZ on Wednesday night at 10:00 p.m. ET. With the Suns laying six...