What is a Basketball Pleaser in Regards to Sports Betting and Wagering?
A basketball pleaser is something that sounds dirty, but really isn’t. It’s basically the opposite of a teaser, which, come to think of it, also sounds dirty. Like a teaser or a parlay, a pleaser is a multi-game bet in which you have to win every game in order to make money. In a parlay you bet the pointspread as it is posted. In a teaser you make the pointspread more favorable for you, but get a much lower return as a result. In a pleaser you are moving the pointspread so that it is more favorable for the sportsbooks, but in return for making the win harder for you, you enjoy a significantly higher potential profit. More risk, more reward.
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As an example, let’s consider a two-team pleaser in the NBA. The two games are:
Miami Heat (-4) vs. Los Angeles Clippers
Houston Rockets (-6) vs. Atlanta Hawks
You want to bet the favorites in both cases, and you are quite confident that both are going to win quite comfortably. Using a pleaser you would add four points to each spread, so your bet would now be:
Miami Heat (-8) vs. Los Angeles Clippers
Houston Rockets (-10) vs. Atlanta Hawks
You would have to cover both of the new pointspreads in order for the bet to pay off. So, sports betting is hard enough with normal odds, so why make it harder for yourself? Well, for the return. A standard two-team parlay pays 13/5. That’s 2.6/1. A two-team, four-point pleaser typically pays 4/1. If you think that the lines are far too low than getting more than 50 percent more in return for the same bet could be attractive for you.
So, are pleasers a good idea? As a general rule, not really. The problem is that parlays by themselves are a really bad mathematical proposition that pays well below true odds. The odds don’t increase significantly enough for a pleaser to justify the added risk and make them attractive. I’m not saying that you should never, ever bet them. You just need to be very careful in your search for value before you lay down a bet. These, at best, are very situational plays - not something in your everyday arsenal.
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