NBA Betting Against the Public 2003-11

At long last, the 2011-2012 NBA Season is getting set to start.  This is a busy time for sports investors, with many of the major sports in action.  In addition to the most popular sports, the NFL and college football — the sports with more frequent profit opportunities (the NBA & NHL) are getting underway.  Please click here for our research on the NHL sports betting marketplace.

Below, we update our analysis for “Betting Against the Public” in the NBA.  Sports Insights’ NBA database now includes eight seasons worth of data — and about 10,500 games.  Here, we highlight a bias of value on Visiting teams that the Public hates, something we have seen in the NHL as well.

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Sports Insights Database and NBA Research

Sports Insights (SI) has collected betting data for every major U.S. sport since the 2003.  The Sports Insights database includes the opening and closing lines (and “line movement,” for various sportsbooks) as well as final scores — and perhaps most importantly, Sports Insights’ NBA Betting Trends data.  For the purpose of our articles, our research team also “cleans” our data — to ensure our historical data is useful for our articles and our Members.  SIs’ historical database for each sport is an important part of our research — and value-added for our Members.  It is the backbone for our contrarian sports investing  methods and you can’t find this kind of data and information anywhere else! 

Our database and contrarian methods are backed by tens of thousands of games across every major U.S. sport.  Data is available for seven major US sports — and may be purchased as a group — or for individual sports.  The Sports Insights NBA database now includes data going back to the 2003-04 season.  Here are some notes on the data used for this article:

  • Data for the past eight seasons (November 2003 through June 2011)
  • Includes the regular season and playoffs
  • Excludes the pre-season and All-Star Games
  • About 10,500 games.

Betting Against the Public — NBA

Over the years, Sports Insights’ proprietary “betting percentages” (obtained from actual sportsbooks) have proven to be a good contrarian sports investing tool.  Our Members can often find value by finding the most “lopsided bet” games of the day — and “Betting Against the Public.”  In the chart below, we see that there is a slight bias for betting against the public.  There are very few games below the 20% level.  Below, we “carve” up the data further and see a potentially useful bias on “betting against the public” on “out-of-favor visiting teams.”  

Table 1: NBA and Betting Against the Public (Last Eight Seasons, ending June 2011)

Betting Percentage Win Percentage
40% 50.6%
35% 50.5%
30% 50.9%
25% 50.4%

NBA Visitors: Undervalued

The past several years of NBA data has shown that Visiting teams may be more undervalued than Home teams.  That is, if you “Bet Against the Public” and select only Visiting (or Away) teams (Table 2), your winning percentage would be higher than when both Visitors and Home teams are selected (Table 1, above).  This approach yields a 54.8% winning percentage (bolded in the chart below) — for betting against the public on Visiting teams at the 25% “bet-against level.”

Table 2: NBA Visitors and Betting Against the Public (Last Eight Seasons, ending June 2011)

Betting Percentage Win Percentage
40% 52.0%
35% 52.6%
30% 54.4%
25% 54.8%

Summary

SportsInsights.com prides itself in being an industry leader in sports information services.  We hope that you will make Sports Insights your one-stop shop for everything from up-to-the-minute live betting odds and scores, to sports investing information — and winning betting systems.  Our Members enjoy some of the most innovative sports marketplace information available!  Sports Insights develops analytical tools that build upon sports marketplace indicators (such as “betting percentages” and “line moves”) to give our Members an edge over other handicappers and the sportsbooks.

Disclaimer

We do not guarantee that the trends and biases we’ve found will continue to exist. It is impossible to predict the future. Any serious academic research in the field of “market efficiencies” recognizes that inefficiencies may disappear over time. Once inefficiencies are discovered, it is only a matter of time before the market corrects itself. We do not guarantee our data is error-free. However, we’ve tried our best to make sure every score and percentage is correct.