NHL Betting – The Basics

Embarking on the exciting journey of National Hockey League (NHL) betting can be an engaging way to demonstrate your fervor for your preferred team. Nonetheless, before making any financial commitments, it’s crucial to understand and implement key strategies. By adhering to these essential principles and exercising discipline and intelligence, you can enhance your chances of achieving NHL betting success.
In this comprehensive article, we will explore the various aspects of wagering on NHL games, delving into the assortment of bets you can place and offering valuable tips to boost your winning potential. So, if you’re eager to commence your hockey betting endeavors, continue reading!

NFL Quick Overview

The National Hockey League (NHL) stands as the foremost professional ice hockey league in North America. Established in 1917, the NHL comprises 31 teams—24 in the United States and 7 in Canada—split into two conferences, the Eastern and Western. These conferences are further divided into two divisions based on geographical location.

The NHL season kicks off in October, culminating in playoffs in June. Players from various countries contribute to the league’s intense competitiveness. Each team plays 82 regular-season games to determine postseason qualifications and the extent of home advantage during playoff rounds.

The highlight of the season is the Stanley Cup Playoffs tournament, which ultimately leads to one team hoisting the prestigious Stanley Cup as the NHL champions.

NHL Betting Markets

To bet effectively on the NHL, it’s crucial to understand the various types of bets available. This will enable you to select the most appropriate options for your betting strategy and objectives. Familiarizing yourself with each type of bet and studying real-world examples can help you navigate the NHL betting landscape more effectively.

Below are some prevalent wagers you can place on NHL games:

NHL Moneyline Bets

Moneyline bets represent the most straightforward form of hockey wagering. You simply choose a team you believe will win; if they do, your bet succeeds. Moneyline odds are determined by considering factors such as a team’s home and away records, injury news, recent form, and head-to-head records against opponents.

For example, let’s say the New York Islanders face off against the Philadelphia Flyers. The Moneyline odds for this game might look like this:

  • New York Islanders +110
  • Philadelphia Flyers -130

In this example, if you bet on the New York Islanders at +110, then for every $100 that you wager, you’ll win an additional $110. On the other hand, if you bet on the Philadelphia Flyers at -130, then for every $130 that you wager, you’ll win an additional $100.

NHL Puck Line Bets

Puck line bets in hockey are a type of spread bet involving a favorite and an underdog. The favorite must win by two or more goals for your bet to be successful, as they are assigned a -1.5 goal puck line. This is a way for bookmakers to even up the game and give closer odds for the teams involved.

For example, if the favored team is the Colorado Avalanche and they are given the -1.5 puck line against the Minnesota Wild, they would need to win by two or more goals in order for a wager on them to pay off. If the Avalanche win 4-2, a bet on them with the -1.5 puck line would be successful.

NHL Totals (Over/Under) Bets

Totals bets in hockey pertain to the combined goals scored by both teams. You predict whether the combined score will be over or under a specified number. This wager is popular among bettors seeking safer options than Moneyline or puck line bets.

For example, let’s say that the total for a game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Montreal Canadiens is set at 6.5 goals. If you bet that the combined score will be “over”, then you are predicting that there will be seven or more total goals scored in the game. On the other hand, if you bet that it will be “under”, then you are predicting that there will be six or fewer total goals scored in the game.

NHL Parlay Bets

Parlay bets in hockey combine multiple wagers into one larger bet. If any individual bet within the parlay fails, the entire wager is lost. Parlay bets can yield larger payouts but entail higher risk.

For example, let’s say that you decide to make a parlay bet on the following three games:

  • Vancouver Canucks vs. Calgary Flames
  • Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Washington Capitals
  • St. Louis Blues vs. Tampa Bay Lightnings

You could choose to make Moneyline bets on each of these games, and if all three of your picks win, then you will receive a collective payout based on the odds of all three wagers. Keep in mind that the more bets you include in a parlay, the higher the potential payout, but also the greater the risk involved.

NHL Props Bets

(Prop) bets in hockey involve wagering on specific outcomes unrelated to the game’s result. Examples include which player will score first, how many goals a team will score in a period, total penalty minutes in the game, or whether there will be overtime play.

For instance, in a game between the Dallas Stars and the Vegas Golden Knights, you could make a prop bet on which player will score the first goal. You might choose Mark Stone from the Golden Knights or Jamie Benn from the Stars. If the player you’ve chosen scores first, your prop bet will be successful.

Another example would be betting on the total number of penalty minutes that the Edmonton Oilers and the Anaheim Ducks will accumulate in a game. If the line is set at 14.5 minutes, and you bet the “over,” you’re predicting that the teams will combine for more than 14.5 penalty minutes during the game.

NHL Futures Bets

Futures bets in hockey involve predicting the outcome of an event occurring at a later date. These bets often pay larger amounts than other NHL betting types, as they require forecasting teams’ and players’ performance over an entire season. Examples include betting on which team will win the Stanley Cup or which player will be the league’s top scorer.

For example, you could place a futures bet at the beginning of the season on the Boston Bruins to win the Stanley Cup. If they ultimately win the championship, your futures bet will pay off. Keep in mind that futures bets can have varying odds depending on the perceived strength of each team.

Another example would be wagering on which player will win the Art Ross Trophy for the most points in the regular season. You might choose to bet on Connor McDavid, Nathan MacKinnon, or another star player. If the player you’ve chosen finishes the season with the most points, your futures bet will be successful.

In conclusion, understanding the different NHL betting markets, along with their accompanying real-world examples, can help you make more informed betting decisions. By choosing the most suitable betting options for your strategy and goals, you can improve your chances of success in the dynamic world of NHL wagering. Remember to always bet responsibly and within your limits, and to continually analyze and adapt your betting strategies as needed.

Six NHL Betting Strategies

Understand NHL Rules 

Familiarizing yourself with the rules of the NHL is crucial for making well-informed wagers. Knowing how the game works, including penalties, overtime rules, and game dynamics, can help you identify potential betting opportunities.

Follow Team News

Stay current with team news, injury reports, and roster changes to accurately assess a team’s chances of winning a game. Keep an eye on how these changes may impact the team’s performance and adjust your betting strategy accordingly.

Look for Value Bets 

Seek out bets that offer better value than the market average, such as underdog Moneyline bets or puck line wagers. These bets can yield higher returns if you can accurately identify underestimated teams or game situations.

Bet on Trends 

Utilize historical trends to guide your wagers. For example, certain teams may have a consistent record of winning against other teams in specific cities or stadiums, or a team may perform better on home ice compared to away games. Be cautious, however, not to rely solely on trends, as past performance doesn’t always guarantee future results.

Avoid Heavy Favorites 

Exercise caution when betting on heavy favorites, as they typically offer lower odds, meaning you won’t earn much money if your bet comes through. Instead, consider more evenly matched games or seek out underestimated underdogs for potentially higher returns.

Manage Your Bankroll

 One of the most important aspects of sports betting is proper bankroll management. Set a budget for your NHL betting activities and stick to it, allocating a specific amount per bet to minimize the risk of significant losses. Additionally, avoid chasing losses and remain disciplined in your betting approach to help preserve your bankroll and enjoy a more enjoyable betting experience.

NHL Betting FAQs

  • When is the best time to bet on NHL games?
  • How do I read NHL betting odds?
  • Can I bet on live NHL games?
  • Are there any special bets during the NHL playoffs?
  • Can I bet on individual player performances in NHL games?