Long odds in NBA basketball games may be considered when betting on a particular game or variation of a game, or in the context of futures betting.
Usually a term for money line or futures wagers, we can use the term ‘long odds’ when it comes to discussing a point-spread underdog, as well.
In a single-game NBA wager, a team may be considered long odds when receiving six points or more. This margin represents more than two times the maximum number of points that can be achieved on a given play without the shooter being fouled.
The relevant equivalent in betting on a single-game NBA money line that some would consider long odds is around -200 (or close to +175 for the underdog).
Although the chance is reasonable for an upset with this relatively close margin, we can consider the opposing team as a decided underdog, although casual gamblers may claim that a greater return is necessary to consider a team a big underdog at long odds (such as +300 or greater).
In terms of futures markets, as long as the market is properly set for a fair takeout, we can consider most of the teams in the market are being offered at long odds, particularly if a team is greater than 5-to-1.
Still, some gamblers would not consider such a low price as even 10-to-1 as a long odds choice in a futures betting market, especially in an NBA championship betting field.
In NBA championship futures betting, only a few teams have a reasonable chance of winning the NBA FInals. That is why most of the teams can be considered as receiving long odds.
In reality, teams that are greater than 5- or 6-to-1 and higher will have an extremely difficult time winning the NBA FInals.
In all the other major sports leagues in the United States, teams with long odds stand a better chance to win a respective championship.
It should be noted, that taking teams at long odds is a much better proposition when wagering extremely early in the futures betting cycle, such as before or just after the start of the season.