NBA First-Half Totals (O/U) Betting

Malcolm Darnley

Updated: Nov 16, 2022

Through the first 100 games of the 2022-23 NBA season, teams averaged 113.7 points per game.

If this pace continued for an entire season, it would be the most points averaged by NBA teams since the 1959-60 season.

Obviously, this trend will impact the full game Over/Under (total) and the first-half O/U for those who like to wager on the NBA.

If betting on NBA first-half totals is something that interests you, you’ve come to the right place.

Betting NBA First-Half Over/Unders

If you are familiar with NBA totals (O/U) betting, you will certainly understand NBA first-half O/U betting.

The biggest key for a first-half totals bettor is understanding individual team trends in the first half compared to their overall scoring for the game.

2021-22 Top 5 Teams – Points Per 1st Half

Teams1st-Half PTSOverall PTSRank1st Half PTS %
Nuggets58.9112.61052.3%
T’Wolves58.8115.4151%
Hawks58.6113.1652%
Grizzlies58.4115.2251%
Nets58.2112.7852%

Our table above shows us that an NBA first half totals bettor should not expect the 1st Half O/U to be precisely 50% of the overall total for a game.

Of the four quarters that comprise an NBA game, it is the fourth quarter that averages the fewest amount of points scored.

This impacts the total set for the first half of an NBA game.

The above table also is interesting because it can help identify team scoring trends.

The Denver Nuggets scored more first-half points than any other team in the league last year. However, they finished 10th overall in total points per game.

This kind of information can be beneficial in identifying teams who might provide some first-half O/U value for us.

NBA First Half Over/Under Odds

When analyzing NBA first half O/U odds, a bettor needs to be aware of two key numbers.

Obviously, the first number you will want to look at is the total set by the sportsbook.

Our example below shows that the overall O/U for the Memphis vs. Utah game was 231 points.

The first-half O/U was set at 119 points, slightly more than half of the overall total.

MatchupGame Total (O/U)1st Half Total (O/U)
Memphis vs. UtahOver 231 | -110Over 119 | -115
Under 231 | -110Under 119 | -105

The other essential number a bettor needs to be aware of is the moneyline associated with the total.

In our example above, we can see that the first half total is slightly juiced towards the over at -115.

This means a bettor will pay a small premium to bet the over, compared to the under, which is priced at -105.

Shop Around For Your Best NBA First-Half Odds

When it comes to developing an NBA first-half totals strategy, the most significant advantage a bettor will have against the sportsbooks is their ability to shop around for the Best Odds possible.

MatchupDraftKingsFanDuelCaesars
Philadelphia vs. WashingtonOver 110.5 | -115Over 110.5 | -108Over 110 | -110
Under 110.5 | -105Under 110.5 | -112Under 110 | -110

In our table above, we can see the first half total odds at three different sportsbooks.

If we compare DraftKings and FanDuel, we notice that the total set of 110.5 points is the same at both sportsbooks but that the moneylines associated with that total differ.

When we analyze the odds offered at Caesars, we notice that the total is only 110 and not 110.5, with a moneyline of -110.

For one specific game, the advantages for a bettor might be small.

However, over an entire NBA season, shopping around for your Best Odds can impact your overall ROI by more than 20%.

NBA First-Half Totals Strategy

It is always important to make sure we spend a little time researching and understanding how the sportsbook arrived at its first-half total number.

When doing our research and analyzing the teams involved in a game we are interested in betting, it is essential to remember that teams must play both offense and defense.

This means we can’t just get caught up in looking at how many points a team averages in the first half. We should also examine how many points they tend to allow in the opening 30 minutes as well.

2021-22 1st Half – Points scored vs. Points Allowed

Team1st Half PTS For1st Half AgainstTotal
Denver58.956.6115.5
Minnesota58.854.3112.6
Atlanta58.658.3116.9
Memphis58.461.2119.6
Brooklyn58.256.8115

Our table above is interesting because it lists the Top 5 first half scoring teams from last year, and also gives us their points allowed in the first half.

If we just compared the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Memphis Grizzlies on their first-half scoring ability, we would assume these teams to be almost the same.

However, when we look at how many points both these teams allowed in the opening 24 minutes of games last year, we see a 7-point gap.

Give yourself an advantage over the majority of the betting public by going deeper into your first-half analysis when breaking down how teams perform.

How To Use The NBA First Half Totals Standings Page

If you are interested in wagering on NBA first-half totals, you will want to make sure BestOdds.com becomes a part of your betting routine.

After each night of the season, BestOdds.com will update its first-half totals standing page, providing up-to-date information that will be a key part of your first-half totals research.

Understand how teams perform in comparison to their first-half total being set by sportsbooks.

Understand how often teams go over and under their first-half total when at home and on the road.

BestOdds.com provides key stats for bettors of all skill levels looking to wager on NBA first-half totals.

Looking for more stats? Check out the NBA First-Quarter Totals (O/U) stats for betting.

Latest update: 3 hours ago
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About the author

Malcolm loves to watch all kinds of different sports. He also writes about them.