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NBA Betting System: If an Underdog Is Leading at Halftime, Double Down in the Second

NBA Betting System: If an Underdog Is Leading at Halftime, Double Down in the Second article feature image

Photo credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Jayson Tatum

  • If an NBA underdog is leading at halftime, should you bet on regression and fade it in the second half?
  • According to Bet Labs data, the opposite is true -- especially in certain situations.

You guys know the drill. Have a question, ask Bet Labs. It's like your wise, old grandpa except without the lingering mothball smell.

One recent question I had was due to the last Celtics-Warriors game. Boston was a 6.5-point underdog to the defending champs but led at halftime. The easy narrative is to bet on regression — for either team — in the second half and expect the Warriors to be a nice value.

As you probably know, the Celtics also won the second half, making some good money for bettors who hit them for the second-half moneyline of +447.

Was that just a random event? Or is there potentially some value in fading the public and regression narrative by doubling down on the dog in the second half?

Bet Labs shows that in certain cases, there certainly is value.

If an Underdog Wins the First Half, Double Down in the Second

Home teams that are underdogs for the full game and winning by three-plus points at halftime have been an incredible value on the second-half moneyline historically, netting bettors $12,603 (assuming $100 bets) and an 8.9% Return on Investment (ROI) since 2006.

Of course, with any moneyline underdog system, you'll have to bet with volume to realize the full ROI. These underdogs hit just 35.1% of the time, which means, obviously, you'll lose most of the bets.

But the market is clearly undervaluing them, because when they do hit they overcome the losses and then some. If you're willing to take the Ls and #TrustTheSystem, over time you'll realize a nice profit on these second-half moneyline underdogs.

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Nick Sterling
Feb 29, 2024 UTC