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Basketball, a team sport, is comprised of two teams of five players, each attempting to score by shooting a ball through a basketball hoop 10 feet off the ground.   The game is played on a rectangular court with a hoop at each end.  The basketball court is split into two main sections by a mid-court line.

There are some basic rules of play which we’ll explain further down.  First, though, you probably know that basketball is one of the most popular and most-wagered sports in the world.  If you’re looking for the best online sportsbooks to place your bets at, may we be bold enough to suggest that integrity is one of the – nope, scratch that,  the most important factor that you should keep in mind before deciding where to play.  We’re rounded up our personal choices of the most-trusted and respected online sportsbooks in the industry, where you’ll get optimum service, secure and easy banking transactions, and tons of sports information and insider tips.  You’ll also get the best lines out there.

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The basketball game begins with one player from either team facing off at center court.  A referee tosses the basketball up between the two players, who will attempt to tip it to a teammate (this is called a tip-off).

If the offensive team puts the ball into play behind this mid-court line, the team has a maximum of ten seconds to get the ball over the line.  If it fails to do so within 10 seconds, the defense gets the ball.   Once the offensive team (the team with the ball) manages to get the ball over the mid-court line, the team can no longer have possession of the ball in the area in back of the line. If the team mistakenly gets possession of the ball in this area, the defense is awarded the ball.

By passing and / or dribbling, the ball is moved down the court toward the basket.   The defense tries to steal the ball, steal and / or deflect passes, get rebounds and contest shots.

If a team makes a basket, the team scores two points and the ball then goes to the other team.  If a basket is made outside of the three-point arc, then it’s worth three points.    The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.

Let me interrupt the lesson for a moment and remind you that most of not all of these terms and details have little to do with betting on the game itself. While side-bets regarding individual statistics are accepted at some sports books, all of them will be mainly concerned with the final score. Check out a few for some of the details that you can expect to find when you decide to dip your feet in the exciting waters of online sports betting!

..and now, back to the lesson!

Free throws are awarded to a team according the type of foul or number of fouls committed in a half.   A free throw is worth one point.  If a shooter is fouled, then either two or three free throws (if the shooter was behind the three-point line when the foul occurred) are awarded to the shooter.    There are some fouls that don’t result in free throws until a certain number of these fouls have added up during a half.  If this number is achieved, then the player who was fouled is given a free throw.  If he makes his first one, he attempts a second.  If he misses the first show, the ball becomes live on the rebound.

If a game’s score is tied at the end of a game, then overtime periods are played out until a winner emerges.

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