NBA Regular Season Betting Review

By Andrew D

June 14, 2022

Image Courtesy of Alamy

So. The NBA 2022 regular season has come and gone. A special season in many ways. Not least because of the troubles and disruptions of the one that preceded it, or the fact that it is the 75th anniversary season. 

All thoughts have turned to the NBA Playoffs and next season.


Take a look at some of the facts and figures and see if we can’t wring any more insights out of them before we cast our eyes to the future.

We will do a “deep-dive” into some of the more interesting aspects of the 2022 season.

The 2021/22 season saw a rule change in the way fouls are called. Effectively, it was supposed to make it more difficult for players to simply drive into the paint and deliberately draw a foul. It was worded as:

“…an interpretive change in the officiating of overt, abrupt or abnormal non-basketball moves by offensive players with the ball in an effort to draw fouls.” 

This move meant that referees didn’t blow their whistles as much for so-called ‘fouls’ that had the rest of us pulling what’s left of our hair out and screaming in frustration. 

Before its implementation, the change garnered a generally positive reaction around the NBA, including from Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry who said;

“But definitely the purity of the game, the goal is to put the ball in the basket and not be out there just living and dying by trying to get to the free-throw line any way you can. I love the effort.”

His teammate Draymond Green said;

“I’ve been really enjoying watching basketball this year. I kind of had stopped watching the NBA a bit because it was just too flailing and flopping and guys cheating the game and getting free throws. So I think that’s been great.”



Plays in which offensive players simply hurl themselves into a defender and are awarded the foul were certainly less in evidence. And many were ignored when they did occur. Job done right? Success achieved? 

Well, hang on a minute. There were some other, unforeseen effects that we might have to attribute to the rule change. 

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Overall scoring has nose-dived…

After a 6-year straight rise in points per game, the average has dropped to the level of 2014/15. Offenses have been rampant over the last few seasons. In fact, all 10 of the highest offensive ratings in NBA history have come from teams playing in the last 3 seasons. The top 7 are from last season!

Points scored per 100 possessions (offensive efficiency) had increased to a record of 112.3 in 2020/21

That dropped by a rather surprising 6 points this season and the total points scored in an average game dropped as a result. That is despite the average game pace increasing and the number of 3-pointers along with it. 

Defenders are less afraid to commit fouls and can be more aggressive. It seems fairly clear that the players who are most negatively impacted are the offense. 


But we have to ask ourselves – would we rather continue to see high-scoring games where a huge number of points come as a direct result of cheating and play-acting? Lower scores don’t mean less exciting games. They’re just tougher and edgier perhaps.

These observations are by no means conclusive. There could certainly be other factors at play. Defenses evolve as shooters change their style. It may just be that they’re catching up. 

For what it’s worth (you’re reading this, so it must be worth something), this is one of those (very) rare occasions where the team here at The Jump Hub is in total agreement.

We will happily watch a game where the scores are lower but the action is tighter and more aggressive. Scoring is, undoubtedly exciting and eye-catching. But not when it’s just free throw after free throw because of nonsensical fouls. It makes games seem lame at times and we can’t get on board with that.


  • Most Valuable Player: Nikola Jokić: 27.1 PPG, 13.8 RPG, 7.9 APG

  • Rookie of the Year: Scottie Barnes: 15.3 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 3.5 APG

  • Defensive Player of the Year: Marcus Smart

  • Most Improved Player: Ja Morant

  • Sixth Man of the Year: Tyler Herro

  • Games played: Saddiq Bey / Mikal Bridges / Dwight Powell / Deni Avdija / Kevon Looney: 82

  • Games started: Saddiq Bey / Mikal Bridges: 82

  • Total minutes played: Mikal Bridges: 2,854

  • Minutes per game: Pascal Siam: 37.9

  • Total points: Trae Young: 2,155 

  • Points per game: Joel Embiid: 30.6

  • Total rebounds: Nikola Jokić: 1,019

  • Rebounds per game: Rudy Gobert: 14.7

  • Total assists: Trae Young: 737

  • Assists per game: Chris Paul: 10.8

  • Total blocks: Jaren Jackson Jr: 177

  • Blocks per game: Jaren Jackson Jr: 2.3

  • Total steals: Dejounte Murray: 138

  • Steals per game: Dejounte Murray: 2

  • Free throws: Joel Embiid: 654

  • Free throws attempted: Joel Embiid: 803

  • Free throw percentage: Jordan Poole: .925

  • 3-point field goals: Stephen Curry: 285

  • 3-point field goals attempted: Stephen Curry: 750

  • 3-point field goal percentage: Luke Kennard: .449

  • 2-point field goals: DeMar DeRozan: 724

  • 2-point field goals attempted: DeMar DeRozan: 1,393

  • 2-point field goal percentage: Rudy Gobert: .718

  • Field goals: DeMar DeRozan: 774

  • Field goals attempted: Jayson Tatum: 1,564 

  • Field goal percentage: Rudy Gobert: .713

  • Turnovers: Trae Young: 303

  • Turnover percentage: Malik Beasley: .047

  • Total personal fouls: Jae’Sean Tate: 286

  • Win share: Nikola Jokić: 15.2

  • Player efficiency rating: Nikola Jokić: 32.8 (NBA single-season record)


  • Giannis Antetokounmpo

  • Devin Booker

  • Luka Dončić

  • Nikola Jokić

  • Jayson Tatum


  • Stephen Curry

  • DeMar DeRozan

  • Kevin Durant

  • Joel Embiid

  • Ja Morant


  • LeBron James

  • Chris Paul

  • Pascal Siakam

  • Karl-Anthony Towns

  • Trae Young


  • Giannis Antetokounmpo 

  • Mikal Bridges

  • Rudy Gobert

  • Jaren Jackson Jr

  • Marcus Smart


  • Bam Adebayo

  • Draymond Green

  • Jrue Holiday

  • Matisse Thybulle

  • Robert Williams


  • Scottie Barnes

  • Cade Cunningham

  • Jalen Green

  • Evan Mobley

  • Franz Wagner


  • Ayo Dosunmu

  • Chris Duarte

  • Josh Giddey

  • Bones Hyland

  • Herbert Jones


Team Durant:

  • Kevin Durant

  • LaMelo Ball

  • Devin Booker

  • Joel Embiid

  • Rudy Gobert

  • Draymond Green

  • Zach LaVine

  • Khris Middleton

  • Ja Morant

  • Dejounte Murray

  • Jayson Tatum

  • Karl-Anthony Towns

  • Andrew Wiggins

  • Trae Young

Team LeBron:

  • LeBron James

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo

  • Jimmy Butler

  • Stephen Curry

  • DeMar DeRozan

  • Luka Dončić

  • Darius Garland

  • James Harden

  • Jarrett Allen

  • Nikola Jokić

  • Donovan Mitchell

  • Chris Paul 

  • Fred VanFleet

Team LeBron won the game 163-160


50% (15 of 30) of the league’s coaches now come from minority groups. 

19-year-old Josh Giddey became the youngest player ever to score a triple-double with 17 points, 14 assists, and 13 rebounds. 

14 players scored 50+ points in a single game this season. A new NBA record 

The LA Clippers pulled back 24+ point deficits to win the game 4 times. That hasn’t happened for over 25 years of NBA action. 

A record 121 international players, from 40 different countries appeared on NBA rosters this season. 

Greg Popovich, head coach of the San Antonio Spurs, picked up a record-breaking 1,336th regular-season victory.s

Joel Embiid became the first international player (Cameroon) to take the NBA Scoring Title with a superb 30.6 PPG

Karl Anthony Towns and Kyrie Irving both scored 60+ points. One of them was on March 17th, the other the next day. It is the first time this has happened since 1961. 

In the 2022 NBA All-Star Game, Stephen Curry made a genuinely unbelievable 16 successful 3-point shots.


The 2nd highest for an All-Star game.

Giannis Antetokounmpo became the Milwaukee Bucks’ all-time scoring leader as he took his 14,211th point.

LeBron James recorded his 36,929th point to pass Karl Malone into 2nd place on the NBA all-time scorers list. This season he also snagged his 10,000th career assist, 100th career triple-double, and is now 3rd of all-time in minutes played. 

Stephen Curry hit the all-time NBA record for 3-pointers when he took his 2,974th and passed Ray Allen

Chris Paul took the assists title and became the first player in NBA history to record 20,000 points and 10,000 assists. 

Chicago Bulls’ DeMar DeRozan recorded a staggering 8 back-to-back games with 35+ points scored and 50%+ accuracy from the field. This took him past the legend, Wilt Chamberlain. 

The Memphis Grizzlies earned 2nd Playoff seed in the Western Conference. The highest in the franchise’s history.

Ja Morant’s 2nd quarter buzzer-beater on his way to 52 points in a single game becomes the most viewed Instagram clip ever with 56 million views (and climbing no doubt) 

Overall, the NBA generated more than 13 billion social media video views. 7% more than the previous season. That represents almost 2 views by every single person on Earth… Quite astonishing


  • Most wins: Phoenix Suns, 64

  • Most losses: Houston Rockets, 62

  • Highest pace: Minnesota Timberwolves, 100.9 possessions/game

  • Lowest pace: Dallas Mavericks, 95.4

  • Most points: Minnesota Timberwolves, 9,507

  • Least points: Oklahoma City Thunder, 8,506

  • Most total field goals: Phoenix Suns, 3,581 

  • Least total field goals: New York Knickerbockers, 3,088

  • Most total field goals attempted: Memphis Grizzlies, 7,739

  • Least total field goals attempted: Philadelphia 76ers, 6,932

  • Best field goal percentage: Phoenix Suns, .485

  • Worst field goal percentage: Oklahoma City Thunder, .430

  • Most 3-pointers: Minnesota Timberwolves, 1,211

  • Least 3-pointers: Washington Wizards, 860

  • Most 3-pointers attempted: Minnesota Timberwolves, 3,386

  • Least 3-pointers attempted: Chicago Bulls, 2,364

  • Best 3-point percentage: Miami Heat, .379

  • Worst 3-point percentage: Oklahoma City Thunder, .323

  • Most 2-pointers: Phoenix Suns, 2,630

  • Least 2-pointers: New York Knickerbockers, 2,006

  • Most 2-pointers attempted: Memphis Grizzlies, 5,060

  • Least 2-pointers attempted: Utah Jazz, 3,759

  • Best 2-point percentage: Denver Nuggets, .575

  • Worst 2-point percentage: New York Knickerbockers, .497

  • Most free throws: Philadelphia 76ers, 1,605

  • Least free throws: Oklahoma City Thunder, 1,233

  • Most free throws attempted: Houston Rockets, 2,010

  • Least free throws attempted: Los Angeles Clippers, 1,606

  • Best free throw percentage: Philadelphia 76ers, .821

  • Worst free throw percentage: Houston Rockets, .731

  • Most offensive rebounds: Memphis Grizzlies, 1,159

  • Least offensive rebounds: Philadelphia 76ers, 700

  • Most defensive rebounds: Milwaukee Bucks, 2,990

  • Least defensive rebounds: Toronto Raptors, 2,622

  • Most total rebounds: Memphis Grizzlies, 4,032

  • Least total rebounds: Houston Rockets, 3,446

  • Most assists: Charlotte Hornets, 2,302

  • Least assists: New York Knickerbockers, 1,793

  • Most steals: Memphis Grizzlies, 800

  • Least steals: Washington Wizards, 522

  • Most blocks: Memphis Grizzlies, 533

  • Least blocks: Miami Heat, 265

  • Most turnovers: Houston Rockets, 1,351

  • Least turnovers: Atlanta Hawks (Go Hawks!), 972

  • Most personal fouls: Detroit Pistons, 1,799

  • Least personal fouls: Cleveland Cavaliers, 1,433


Looking back at another remarkable season in the greatest sport on Earth, we see a whole host of interesting facts and figures. For those of you who use stats to form and inform your own NBA betting strategy, it is clear that while they can never truly reflect what happened, they can give us a great insight into how and why things turned out the way they did.

Let’s take a random example. Let’s say that an outsider who had never seen a game of basketball saw that the Cleveland Cavaliers committed the least amount of personal fouls across the season. They might logically surmise that this reflected well in the team’s overall position in the league and, in all likelihood, did not see them finish last.

And they would be right…

If a rudimentary analysis of just one stat like that can give us a snippet of information, then think how much you can learn and infer once your own model is complete. Check out our article – How to build an NBA betting model – for a great look at how to do so. 

Listening to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver talking on ESPN before the action-packed Game 3 of the NBA Finals, we picked up on something that he openly hinted at. He talked about the success of the NBA Play-In tournament that leads to the NBA Playoffs. 

To say this was controversial might be the understatement of the season. We can’t even agree here in The Jump Hub office and have yet to meet any 4 consecutive fans that have the same opinion of it. Many of the players are not overly impressed either. 

Anyway, Silver cited this as the reason behind thoughts of a new mid-season tournament. This would be introduced to liven up the action when it lags in the latter stages of the season. 

Now, the more cynical among you may say that the reason for this apathetic final few weeks from some teams is deliberate “tanking” and that it might be better to address that cheating but we couldn’t possibly comment on that…

The NBA Finals are currently rocking our world and Game 5 is about to start so let’s leave it with this:

The NBA is not perfect. We all know that. But it is, at least, able to assess itself and try to implement changes that will genuinely improve the spectacle for the fans. Not all sports are prepared to do so and we here at The Jump Hub feel that is something to be applauded. 

As with all seasons, we can look back at our highlights and lowlights. Our own personal biases and team affiliations mean that no 2 fans can ever have the same experience. But hopefully, we can all agree that the game just keeps getting faster, stronger, and more entertaining as time passes. These athletes perform at a higher level than perhaps any in history have done on a regular basis and the records keep tumbling. 

Long may it continue

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