Once a player gets familiar with the common types of bets for NBA games, like point spreads, moneylines and totals you may move on to the next stage and start thinking about combining them. NBA parlay bet is a combination of multiple bets.
To put it simply, you ‘tie’ a number of bets together and in the event that you get all the bets right you would receive a greater pay-out compared to all of the bets taken individually. This is because you have to get all the bets right, whereas with individual bets you may get one or few bets correctly and lose the other ones. The risk with a parlay bet is greater and that’s why the pay-out is greater too. Bear in mind that you would have to get all the bets right and that losing just one of them would result in a loss.
A practical example
Let’s say that you want to keep it simple and you have selected a couple of moneylines. Let’s imagine that on a particular night, the Bulls are playing at home against the Timberwolves, the Thunder are playing against the Bucks in Oklahoma and the Hawks are hosting the Clippers. You think that all home teams stand great chances of winning. The odds are -150 for the Bulls, -165 for the Thunder and -160 for the Hawks. Taken individually these are not great odds and they won’t win you a lot of money if you bet on all three games and all of them win. So, this would be a wonderful combination for a parlay. Put all three moneylines together and you have yourself a parlay bet.
Here’s the actual difference moneywise. Say that you’re playing each game individually with the amount of money necessary for you to win $100. That would be $150, $165 and $160 respectively and eventually you’d win $300, with a three bets that come up to $475. If you bet $475 on a parlay that includes all three games, you’d win about $1600, or more than five times of what you would’ve won if you took all three bets individually. The more games you include in the parlay, the more money you’re going to win. Of course, the risk is increased and you should always bear this in mind. Also, a game with higher individual odds will significantly increase the potential amount. So, if you have three moneylines with odds close to -110, or if you bet on the underdog(s), then the difference in the amount won would be even greater.
But you don’t have to combine moneylines only. You don’t even have to select a specific type of bet and put only that kind of bets in one parlay. For example, you can combine one moneyline, one point spread and one total in a single parlay. You’re not allowed to bet on the same game though, for example you can’t beat that the home team will win with +8 and that it will win with +10. But, you can always wager more than one parlay at a time.
What happens when there’s a ‘push’?
Of course, if you’re betting on whole number point spreads or whole number totals, there’s a chance that a game might end up as a push. If, say, you have 4 games on a parlay, and 3 of them are good, whereas the fourth one is a push, you shouldn’t worry, you haven’t lost. In such situations that game, the push, is eliminated from the total calculation and you win money as if you’ve wagered a 3-game parlay. But if three out of four games are pushes, then the whole parlay is considered a push and you’ll only get your risk amount back.