Legally Betting On The NBA Playoffs And Finals For 2020
The NBA Playoffs are when things get serious for players, fans, and bettors. At the start, 16 teams will enter and after the NBA Finals are played, only 1 team will walk away with the Larry O’Brien trophy and be crowned NBA champion for that season.
The playoffs and finals are the biggest basketball betting seasons, where fans can bet on point spreads, the money line, over/under, prop bets, futures, and wager money via live and mobile betting. Here you’ll find our list of the best online sportsbooks to use during the NBA postseason and info on the legality of betting on the playoffs along with a breakdown of the matchups and schedule for the 2019 NBA Playoffs and 2019 NBA Finals.
The 2020 NBA season has been suspended due to an abundance of caution regarding the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. However, the duration of the suspension has not been announced, and we don't know whether or not this will affect the NBA Playoffs from being contested as scheduled.
In the meantime, you may not be able to wager on the NBA, but you can visit any of the sportsbooks listed here and enjoy other gambling amusements. You can play real-money blackjack, craps, baccarat, and other table games, and there are hundreds of slots to choose from, too. Most of these books also have big tournament poker rooms. Whatever your game, these sites are still ballin'!
The Legalities - Is Betting On The NBA Playoffs Legal In The US?
There is no law at the state or federal level that prohibits NBA fans and handicappers from betting on the playoffs at online sportsbooks, and this includes betting on the NBA regular season. The laws that do exist make the act or business of accepting bets illegal, not placing the bets. So if your local bookie created a website and allowed players to place bets, that would be illegal. But the act of you placing the bets wouldn't. And because all of the sites we recommend are licensed offshore sites, US gambling law doesn't apply to them.
There is also some confusion about the UIGEA bill. Many websites report that this bill makes online gambling illegal. That's not true at all. The law is actually aimed at banks and financial institutions and makes it illegal for them to process any transactions related to gambling. But it has no text at all that actually makes the act of placing a bet illegal from your side. In addition, there is not a single case of anyone being arrested for placing a bet on the NBA online at the sites we recommend.
TOP BETTING SITE FOR THE NBA PLAYOFFS AND FINALS
50% Bonus Up To $250
Bovada sportsbook is a household name in the online sports betting industry. They are actually part of the Bodog group, one of the oldest and most reputable names in the industry. So if you consider trust and reputation to be a major factor in where you decide to play, Bovada is an excellent choice. They actually cater exclusively to USA players and offer everything you could imagine in the way of basketball betting lines and props.
New depositing players can claim their generous 50% bonus up to $250 on their first deposit. They accept all major credit cards and just recently starting accepting Bitcoin for both deposits and withdrawals. So getting your money both on and off the site is a piece of cake now.
- They legally accept players from 45/50 states
- Best reputation in the entire industry
- Generous 50% signup bonus up to $250 Free
- Deposit using credit cards or bitcoin
- They always pay, no monkey business here
- Only U.S. Mexico And Brazil Players Accepted
- Excluded U.S. States: NV, NJ, DE, MD
MOST REPUTABLE LEGAL USA NBA BETTING SITES
ODDS TO WIN THE 2020 NBA CHAMPIONSHIP
NBA PLAYOFF PICTURE: FIRST ROUND MATCHUPS
Here you can find the playoff seeding and matchups in both the eastern and western conference for the first round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs, which are set to begin Saturday, April 18.
- 2020 EASTERN CONFERENCE SEEDS: TBA
- 2020 WESTERN CONFERENCE SEEDS: TBA
- EASTERN CONFERENCE PLAYOFFS: TBA
- WESTERN CONFERENCE PLAYOFFS: TBA
2020 NBA PLAYOFF SCHEDULE
The 2019-2020 NBA regular season comes to an end on Wednesday, April 15, and the 2020 NBA playoffs officially begin on Saturday, April 18. While the conference semifinals and conference finals have set dates, it is possible to have these series moved up, which will be indicated in the parenthesis.
- April 15: End of 2019-2020 NBA regular season - (postponed)
- April 18: Start of the 2020 NBA playoffs - (postponed)
- May 4-5 (2-3): Start of the conference semifinals - (postponed)
- May 19-20 (17-18): Start of the conference finals - (postponed)
- June 4: Start of the 2020 NBA Finals - (postponed)
- June 21: Game 7 of the 2020 NBA if necessary - (postponed)
THE TYPES OF NBA PLAYOFF BETS
When betting on the NBA Playoffs, you're going to find quite a few bets at most sportsbooks. This is because many experienced handicappers go far beyond simply betting on the outcome of a game or series and instead bet per half, per quarter, make prop bets, bet on futures, etc. In this regard, there is certainly no shortage of betting types or structures you can find with most sportsbooks. Here are a few of the betting types you will likely see:
- NBA Game Lines: Where you bet on single-game point spreads, money line, over/under totals, etc.
- NBA 1st/2nd/3rd/4th Period Lines: Betting lines for any individual period of a single game
- 1st/2nd Half Lines: Betting lines for each half of a single game
- NBA Props: Any betting line that doesn’t directly impact the game’s outcome
- NBA Series Price: Odds to win a single best-of-seven series
- Series Betting: Betting on the series winner, correct series outcome, and total games played over/under
- Futures: Odds made ahead of time of a game or series that indicates how likely a bet will payout, i.e. odds to win the NBA championship
TOP 5 TEAMS WITH THE BEST CHANCE TO WIN THE 2020 NBA FINALS
Below you’ll find top 5 teams with the best odds to win the finals and take home this year’s NBA championship. The best return on investment you can make is betting on a team in the East and hedging your bet when the Warriors make it to the finals (again).
Since the Celtics had a down year and you shouldn’t trust the 76ers, hedging with either the Bucks or the Raptors (or both) will likely give you a guaranteed ROI when the postseason is over.
1. Los Angeles Lakers (+200)
- 2018-2019 Result: Did not make playoffs
- Odds Analysis: Despite having King James on the Lakers roster, the Lakers did not make the playoffs last year. Last season proved that Lebron can't win a championship without a good team around him. During the offseason, the Lakers signed Anthony Davis, instantly making the Lakers a playoff-bound team.
2. Los Angeles Clippers (+300)
- 2018-2019 Result: Made playoffs, lost to Golden State
- Odds Analysis: The Clippers made national headlines after they signed Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Once the two were inked, the Clippers odds shot up and they are now one of the favorites to win the 2020 Finals going into the season.
3. Boston Celtics (+1500)
- 2018-2019 Result: Lost to Bucks in Conference Simi-finals
- Odds Analysis: The Celtics have been down for the past few years but they are never out. Odds favor the Celtics making it deep into the playoff bracket, but not many people are betting on them to win it all.
4. Houston Rockets (+1500)
- 2018-2019 Result: lost in the divisional finals
- Odds Analysis: The team that was built to beat Golden State got knocked out of the playoffs by Golden State last year. The Rockets are still led by James Harden but this offseason they added 8x Allstar Russell Westbrook to help the team get past their nemesis.
5. Toronto Raptors (+1600)
- 2018-2019 Result: NBA Champions
- Odds Analysis: Last year the Raptors were considered one of those teams that were good but not good enough, however, Kawhi Leonard was the driving force behind the Raptor's success. This year without their star they are unlikely to have the same success they had last year.