HomeNBA Betting in Virginia

NBA betting in Virginia

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is the second-most bet on sports league in the United States, according to research from CRG Global. Their study indicates roughly 54% of American gamblers have placed an NBA wager at some point, trailing only the NFL (at a whopping 81%).

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Though Virginia does not have an NBA team that calls the state home, betting trends in VA rather closely match the national tendencies. With that in mind, we’ve prepared this piece on NBA betting in Virginia so you can learn more about how to responsibly and knowledgeably bet on basketball.

Best Virginia betting apps for NBA betting

Depending on the factors you prioritize when choosing a Virginia betting app, your take on the “best” option for NBA betting in Virginia may vary from what other gamblers like to use. Here, we’ve listed four that have consistently performed well in VA and may be more favorable to you.

FanDuel Virginia

FanDuel Sportsbook

FanDuel VA is one of two official betting partners to the NBA, the other being DraftKings. New bettors will appreciate how easy to use FanDuel’s betting app is; the program is very intuitive and well laid out.

DraftKings Virginia

DraftKings Sportsbook

Like FanDuel, DraftKings began as a daily fantasy sports (DFS) website, adding a sportsbook platform to its list of verticals in 2018. NBA fans will enjoy DK’s live betting markets for in-play basketball action.

Caesars Virginia

Caesars Sportsbook

Caesars Sportsbook VA frequently has lucrative welcome bonuses that have higher maximum values than the offers available at other bookmakers (we’ve seen as much as $1,500 in bonus bets offered). The bonuses don’t stop after signup either, so returning players will always have something that makes coming back to Caesars worth it.

BetMGM Virginia

BetMGM Sportsbook

BetMGM has an outstanding loyalty program for regular players, allowing them to earn rewards points on every wager they make. These points can be redeemed for betting bonuses, discounted hotel/casino stays, exclusive travel experiences, entertainment tickets, and more.

Types of NBA betting promos that Virginia sportsbooks offer

Virginia sportsbooks will offer many types of NBA betting promos throughout the year. You’ll notice an uptick in basketball-focused promotions at the start of each season and as the playoffs are ramping up. Here are a few of the most common you’ll see.

  • Bet and Get: One of the more common offers you’ll see is a “bet and get” deal, where you’ll receive bonus bets or another form of betting credit. An example might read as “Bet $5 on any NBA market and get $200 in bonus bets.”
  • Second-chance bets: Second-chance bets allow you another attempt to win money while betting on the NBA. With this bonus type, if you lost an eligible wager, you would receive bonus credits equal to the amount of your initial stake (though there may be a cap to the amount, so read the terms and conditions carefully). However, no bonus funds are awarded if your first bet wins.
  • Odds boosts: Odds boosts improve the payout on winning wagers by offering a bump to the profit margin. For example, the line on a Washington Wizards game may read “Washington Wizards moneyline +150.” With a boost, this could go up to +200, meaning you receive a 50% larger return than on the initial line (and you double the value of your initial stake as profit on the bet). Odds boosts usually add between +25 and +100 to a line, though you may find even larger boosts available depending on the markets you’re playing.

How to wager on the NBA online in Virginia

It’s simple and free to sign up to wager on the NBA online in Virginia. Most operators will have you registered and ready to wager in about 5-10 minutes. The order of steps may change slightly depending on the sportsbook, but in general, you’ll need to do all of the following to get started.

  1. Find a licensed operator: You should only wager with legitimate sports betting sites and mobile apps. To help you find licensed operators, we’ve written sportsbook reviews that discuss bonus information, payment details, customer service contacts, platform performance insights, and an overall rating of the bookie.
  2. Look for a bonus code: Within the sportsbook reviews, we’ll list any bonus code information you may need to make the most of your registration. Using the links on our pages should automatically input the code into the relevant field on the sign-up form. These links will also make sure you’re getting the best available deals even when bookmakers change their welcome offers.
  3. Enter your account credentials: Next, you’ll need to input an email address and password to use when logging in. You will also need to use a cell phone number to enable two-factor authentication, and you may be prompted to create and answer a security question to help add an extra layer of protection to your account.
  4. Type in your identifying info: After that, Virginia law requires you to provide your legal name, birth date, street address (P.O. boxes won’t be acceptable), and the last four digits of your social security number. This information will be used to verify your identity and betting eligibility, and it will be handled securely at all times.
  5. Submit registration: Finally, you must agree to the terms of service and privacy policy, then click “submit” to complete your registration. You’ll receive a confirmation email to the address you used when signing up; use the link in that email to log into your sports betting account, make a real-money deposit with the banking method of your choice, and begin making all the NBA wagers you find reasonable.

Bet types you can place on the NBA

Sports betting sites in Virginia will offer many different bet types that you can place on NBA action. Here are a few of the most popular options in VA.

  • Totals: Totals wagers are also called “over/unders,” and involve the sportsbook setting a projected combined point total for two teams in a head-to-head matchup. Bettors are then tasked with choosing whether the actual total will be over or under the sportsbook’s mark. This can be a great bet type to play when you aren’t as confident in picking a winner straight up or against the spread.
  • Props: Props bets for the NBA cover many statistical categories and aren’t necessarily tied to the final score (so your bet can still win even if the player/team involved in the prop loses). They can be tied to individual players, combinations of players, or overall teams. Some examples could include bets on which team will score first, a player’s combined points + assists + total, or the halftime point total.
  • Parlays: Parlays take two or more betting outcomes (which don’t all have to be the same wager type) and combine them into a single wager with multiplied odds for each outcome (or leg) that is included in your bet. We recommend keeping your parlays to 2-5 legs when starting out so you can get familiar with the process and maintain reasonable betting value, though sportsbooks will often allow up to 10 legs on a single slip (some will go even higher, but the odds there can be stacked against you, as a single leg failing to his causes the entire wager to lose). NBA same game parlays are also a fan favorite since they allow you to focus your research on one specific matchup when putting your betting slip together.

Reading NBA odds

Understanding how to read NBA odds is crucial to betting success as it will allow you to determine whether betting value exists for the lines you want to play.

The process of reading odds at U.S. sportsbooks is twofold: first, you must understand the favorite/underdog outcomes, then you must calculate your potential payout.

Favorites and underdogs are designated by a “-” symbol and a “+” symbol, respectively. The betting favorite is the more likely outcome to occur, so you’ll need to risk a higher amount as your stake than you would on the underdog to reach the same profit on your wagers.

On rare occasions, you may find both sides of a betting market have a “-” symbol. When this is the case, the outcome with the higher number after the “-” symbol is the favorite (if the numbers after the symbol are the same, the sportsbooks and betting action indicate a market is a virtual coin toss when picking a winner).

Next, you’ll want to calculate the amount of money you could get when you win your bets. The easiest way to calculate a return is to base the odds around a $100 figure.

For example, if you were betting on the favorite, you may see a moneyline odds of “Washington Wizards -160.” Because Washington is the favorite, you would need to wager $160 to win $100 and earn a $260 payout. However, if Washington was the underdog (the line read as “Washington Wizards +160,”) a $100 bet would win $140; again, the payout is $260, but the profit is noticeably different, as was the amount you needed to risk to get to that total.

Importantly you won’t have to wager $100 on every bet; profits and payouts for the bets you win will scale in proportion to the value of your stake. The sportsbook will automatically convert your potential payout when you enter a stake amount on your bet slip on the sports betting site or in the mobile betting app.

How to bet on the NBA finals & playoffs

Betting on the NBA finals & playoffs can be done at nearly any time of the year, even if the league isn’t in session. You can make bets on which teams will make the playoffs or win the championship by making a futures bet, as opposed to the single-game wagers you would make when games are underway.

In general, you’ll get the most favorable odds for a futures bet before the season starts. Once the season is underway, the odds will change to reflect team performance, player injuries, and a slew of other factors.

However, as teams are eliminated from playoff contention, the field will narrow and your wager should have a higher chance of winning in theory. Balancing the time you place a futures bet will be key to success in this regard.

If futures bets aren’t of interest to you, you can still continue to make moneyline, spread, props, parlays, SGPs, and other wagers during the playoffs and finals the same way you did during the regular season.

Common mistakes when betting on the NBA

The difference between casual bettors and professional bettors is the pros have figured out how to minimize risks and avoid mistakes when betting on the NBA. Here are a few of the common mistakes you should be aware of and check against when making your wagers.

  • Backing heavy moneyline favorites: While NBA moneyline favorites win roughly 67% of the time, the moneyline odds can be skewed to the point where there isn’t enough betting value to make a wager on the favorite worth it. Usually, we advise against odds greater than -200 (for example, -250, -300, etc.), especially as it isn’t unheard of for a favorite to be -500 or more on NBA moneylines. When the odds are that steep, it’s often far more profitable to look to spread bets on the favorite.
  • Limiting yourself to only one sportsbook: Odds shopping is an important skill to master when betting on sports, as you’re constantly leaving money on the table when you don’t. Think of looking at betting odds the same way you would when shopping for a car - you want the best product at the best price. Sportsbooks will have differences in their odds based on their own predictions and the betting action. If you spend some time looking around, you can often find more favorable odds on the wagers you want to make, leading to a larger profit margin when your bets hit.
  • Treating projections as certainties: Projections are a useful starting point when you’re researching betting lines, but they aren’t gospel by any means. As you follow industry insiders (often called “sharps”) and other betting trends, you’ll find projections to be helpful in seeing how others feel about the odds and lines, but you’ll also find your own research becoming more reliable. If you only abide by what others project instead of doing your own research and trusting your processes, you won’t develop your gambling skills and can fall into unconscious biases in your strategies.


Is NBA betting legal in VA?

Yes, NBA betting is legal in VA. The state legalized sports betting in April 2020 and launched the industry in January 2021.

Who is the favorite to win the 2024 NBA Championship?

Throughout the season, the betting favorite to win the 2024 NBA Championship is likely to change, especially during the playoffs. At the moment, the betting favorite is the Boston Celtics, who finished the season with a league-best 64-18 record.