Michael Tradford
Last Update:
October 12, 2021
This author was thoroughly tested and approved by the experts at before joining the editorial board to ensure a high content quality.
Author Bio:
Michael was Marketing Director in Atlantic City and worked in the casino industry for several years before shifting over to numerous newspapers in New York and Chicago working his way up to Editor-in-Chief. His focus areas are mainly in the fields of sports, gambling, and politics. He has a Marketing Degree, visited Columbia University during his time in New York and is now Editor-in-Chief at AmericaGambles.
Michael was Marketing Director in Atlantic City and worked in the casino industry for several years before shifting over to numerous newspapers in New York and Chicago working his way up to Editor-in-Chief. His focus areas are mainly in the fields of sports, gambling, and politics. He has a Marketing Degree, visited Columbia University during his time in New York and is now Editor-in-Chief at AmericaGambles.

Betting Hockey 2021: Odds & Strategies

Hockey is a game that is enjoyed throughout North America and Europe predominantly, with the best professional leagues in the world residing in those two continents. Betting hockey is popular in those parts of the globe as well, as bettors can bet money on teams to win as well as countless other markets that makes the game that is played on the ice so much fun. In this guide to betting hockey, find out how to bet hockey, including what kinds of hockey wagers can be made and what you should know to have the best chance possible to win money with hockey bets and odds with ease.

Everything you need to know about Betting hockey
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  • Betting odds available on NHL and international leagues

  • Wide array of odds to choose from

  • Extremely popular in North America and Europe

How does betting hockey work?

For the most part, hockey betting is simple, as it requires bettors to predict the outcome of hockey games relative to the market that they have chosen. We will get further into the types of hockey betting markets that are available a little later in this guide. But for the most part, hockey bets consist of bettors having to predict which team is going to win a game or how many goals will be scored in a game, or available questions similar to those.

In terms of placing a hockey bet, that is a simple process as well. Bettors will want to login to their preferred sports betting sites or create an account in the event that they do not have one. From there, NHL bettors can go to the hockey section of that site and pick what games they want to bet on and what markets they want to take part in betting on. From there, NHL bettors can choose their stake amounts for each bet and finalize their bets.

It is worth remembering when locking in these sports bets that favorites tend to cost more to back than underdogs, and that NHL bettors should budget accordingly if they are going to back a team that is favored to win a particular game. Doing this will prevent surprises in the event that a favorite is at a steep price to win a game.

What kinds of hockey bets can I make?

There are a large number of hockey bet types that can be played by NHL bettors who want to get in on the action on the ice by betting hockey lines. Here is a look at some of the more noteworthy types of hockey bets, which NHL bettors routinely use to bet on this sport.

  • Money line bets
  • Puck line bets
  • Totals odds
  • Futures odds
  • Props

A money line bet is perhaps the easiest bet to understand of the different types of hockey odds, as it simply asks a bettor to determine which team is going to score more goals win a game. Sometimes these sports bets will include overtime, and other times they might have an option for both teams as well as an option to bet on a draw taking place. It is up to NHL bettors to understand the rules of their betting site to know which of these odds they are going to run into.

Puck line bets are similar to spread wagers in other sports, where sports bettors are tasked with figuring out which team will win with a handicap applied to their score. In the case of hockey betting, the puck line is usually a handicap of 1.5 goals, although there are alternate puck line odds available in some places. When betting hockey totals, meanwhile, sports bettors have to figure out whether the amount of goals scored in a game will go over or under a goals total provided by the bookmaker.

Futures wagers look toward the future, as they ask sports bettors to determine who will win a championship or award over the course of an entire season of games with odds that reflect that degree of difficulty. And prop bets are something of a wild card, in that NHL bettors are able to bet on things like whether or not a goal will be scored in the first 10 minutes of a game or whether a game will go to overtime.

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Important hockey events

Across the world of hockey, there are plenty of important games that sports bettors can bet on. The most important of these events is the NHL playoffs. These postseason games happen every year at the conclusion of the NHL regular season, and pit the eight best teams from each conference against each other with the tournament culminating in the Stanley Cup Final series. Every team has goals of reaching the Cup. Upsets are common in this tournament, as even the top seeds in the playoffs sometimes fall in the first round against teams that had to fight harder at the end of the season to get into the tournament.

There are also important international tournaments to be enjoyed in the world of hockey, with the Olympics hockey tournament being the biggest of those events. Olympic hockey is to hockey what the World Cup is to soccer, as teams usually put their best players into their rosters with the hope of winning gold medals while representing their countries. Teams at the top of this tournament like Canada and Russia often look like all-star teams as their rosters are loaded with players from the NHL and KHL that can make an impact alongside some of the other best individual performers in the world.

There are also occasional events like the world championships or junior international tournaments that tend to draw a lot of attention each year, as countries look to showcase their future stars to the rest of the world.

Things to remember when placing hockey bets

When placing a hockey bet, the first thing to remember is the fact that teams are trying to win championships when they take to the ice. While you may be betting on a regular season game and treating it like it is an important happening, the teams themselves might not value each regular season game the same way. Some teams might be looking to rest their players so they are fresher for the postseason, for example. Knowing those situations is crucial for sports bettors as they look to earn money when betting on hockey.

In a similar vein, goalkeepers are traditionally rotated throughout each season as that is a difficult position to play for the entirety of the year due to the demands of crouching the way that they have to to play the position effectively. When goalkeeper changes happen in any hockey league, they can have perhaps the biggest impact on a team, as their ability to stop the myriad shots that come their way could be affected by those choices to swap out players between the pipes. Monitoring the goalkeeper position is paramount to success in hockey betting.

Also worth remembering is the fact that home ice advantage means different things in different markets. It is often assumed that home ice advantage will mean that a team will have a decided edge in a game, but teams in the Southern United States might have a harder time drawing fans than teams that play in Canada. Understanding those edges or lack thereof is a smart move for any hockey league bettor.

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Betting hockey strategy

In terms of hockey betting strategies, looking at a team’s schedule during the regular season is among the most important. The schedule that hockey players have to keep during the regular league season is incredible, as each team travels from city to city with very little time to recuperate. When teams have to play back to back games in hockey, that could mean that there is a good time for sports bettors to jump in and grab a bet against a tired team, which could score betting profits.

Another strong piece of betting strategy is to not jump into hockey betting too early in the season. Hockey teams can go from being among the best in the league to being among the worst in their league just from making a couple of small changes. Understanding that and being patient to make sure that teams are who you thought they would be can often save a bettor from making a crucial mistake when betting.

Find the right hockey betting sportsbook for you

With betting on hockey odds being as popular as it is, it is no surprise that there are many sports books that offer action on the game. And no matter what type of hockey bets you like to make, odds are that there is a sportsbook offering hockey wagers that is right for you. With our sportsbook comparison tool, you can evaluate various bookmakers based on the criteria that is most important to you to find your ideal betting site for placing wagers on the ice. Don’t waste another minute, use the sportsbook comparison tool and start your sports betting journey now.

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Sports: 21+
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Min. Odds: -190
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Min. Odds: -300
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Min. Odds: -150 to +10,000
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Min. Odds: -200


Intricate yet exciting
Hockey betting is interesting in that it combines analytical knowledge with the more intuitive nature of evaluating things like toughness or physicality. Because of that combination of qualitative and quantitative analysis, hockey bettors have to be able to balance a number of different ideas to have success in betting these odds. Fortunately, hockey bets come in so many different forms that NHL or other league bettors often have the ability to pick something that is tailored toward their skills as a handicapper. And with so many leagues and competitions out there, sports bettors are likely to find something that works for their specific interests as a fan of the sport while looking to score some money.
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