In NBA, you can beat them halfway

Times Staff Writer

Now that the NBA playoffs have reached the conference finals, some basketball bettors looking for more action have turned to wagering on halves and even quarters.

For example, for tonight's Game 2 between Detroit and Boston, the Celtics (-110) are favored by two points over the Pistons (+120) for the first half.

So if Boston leads by more than two points at halftime, a bettor would need to bet $110 to win $100 on the Celtics. But if Detroit is ahead or trails by less than two points at the break, a $100 wager on the Pistons would pay $120.

There's even over/under total points bets available for a half. The combined total for tonight's Game 2 first half is 86.

However, things are a little more complicated for bets on second halves and other in-game wagers. That's because the lines are set at or near the end of the first half and can be played only until the start of the second half.

For tonight's game, the Celtics are favored by 3 1/2 points with an over/under combined points total of 172. On the money line, Boston is listed at -170 with Detroit at +150.


Here are a couple of proposition bets available at Will Charles Barkley be seen on a casino gaming floor before the end of this season's playoffs? Yes (+750) or No (-1,500); Will Barkley be spotted on a casino gaming floor before the start of next season? Yes (+300) or No (-600); Who will be the No. 1 pick of the NBA draft? Kansas State's Michael Beasley (-105) or Memphis' Derrick Rose (-135).

Mixed martial arts

Mixed martial arts veteran Tito Ortiz will enter the cage as an underdog at +160 when he goes up against undefeated Brazilian Lyoto Machida at UFC 84 on Saturday in Las Vegas.

Ortiz, 33, competing in the final fight under his UFC contract, has a 16-5-1 record. Machida, 29, is 12-0 and is listed as a -200 favorite, according to


This story is not intended as a tip sheet, but is an account of significant betting in the sports world.


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