The sport of hockey has it all — speed (ice skates make it faster to travel than by foot), skill, and of course, ruthless aggression. It's the latter of which hockey is most well-known for. While, yes, there's hard tackles and the occasional fight, hockey is an artful sport in its own unique way. This entire dichotomy not only makes hockey exhilarating to watch but to bet on, as well. Plenty of hockey betting exists because of this.
Over the course of this article, we're giving you full details on how to bet hockey games. Topics we'll be covering include getting razor-sharp odds, common betting types, and of course, tips to win!
Hockey Betting Sites
Here's the thing about ice hockey: popularity-wise, it pales in comparison to basketball or football. That's certainly the case among American-based players at least. But as a bettor, that's not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, it creates an opportunity at hockey betting sites.
You see, bookmakers are more likely to overlook hockey, thus misplacing value in certain bets. That's a vulnerability you can exploit if you're knowledgeable enough about the sport.
First things first, though, you'll need to find an online sportsbook to capitalize on. Bookie options are everywhere, however, we've hand-picked the "creme de la creme" bookmakers when it comes to hockey sports betting. These should be atop your to-join list:
First on our recommendations is none other than BetOnline. It's one of the most-used betting sites in North America and for good reason, too.
BetOnline's wagering selection is among the best in the industry. This applies to all sports, but Vegas hockey bets is definitely part of the mix. The NHL makes up the lion share of its hockey action and you'll find all the essentials — game lines, props, futures (more on these later).
On top of the NHL, BetOnline also offers hockey odds on foreign leagues in Europe. This selection isn't nearly as extensive as hockey, but it's there for the real hockey junkie. Overall, BetOnline proves itself as one of the best hockey betting sites.
Next up is WagerWeb. Similarly to BetOnline, the ice hockey betting selection is deep here. Every single NHL game will have odds readily available on the platform.
But here's where WagerWeb stands apart from its competitors — sign-up bonuses. Notice how bonus is plural? That's because WagerWeb offers not one, not two, but three unique welcome promos for first-time bettors.
All three bonuses are not created equal. Differences exist in the cashback and free play offered, as well as the playthrough requirement before winnings are withdrawable. A new signee can only select one deal, but still, having multiple options to choose from really personalizes the playing experience.
Opportunities to bet hockey games are abundant. The NHL season runs from October to June and is jam-packed with games. In the offseason, international competitions such as the World Cup or Olympics spring up. Either way, it's enough to keep bettors busy most year-round.
This predicament makes finding a sportsbook with a rewards program extremely valuable. One of the best services is offered by BetDSI and rivals a comp program you'd find in a Las Vegas-style casino.
Every time you gamble at BetDSI — whether it's on hockey, another sport, or even its casino — you rack up BetPoints. The amount of BetPoints you accumulate earmarks you for one of three rewards tiers (Gold, Platinum, Diamond). Each level has its own unique benefits a bettor can leverage.
But best of all, BetPoints can be flipped into cashback rewards. You're free to use that cash as you'd like, whether to re-invest into betting or withdraw as winnings. Therefore, BetDSI is literally paying you to bet on its platform over the long run. It's tough to beat that, especially if you'll be wagering on hockey often.
One of the best sports for live betting is hockey. Goals are semi-common so momentum can swing instantly. For in-play betting, we strongly suggest MyBookie.
Its live catalog is especially deep and of course, hockey is a prominent fixture in it. MyBookie also excels at updating the odds in real-time. For the most part, it's seconds ahead of the action unfolding on TV and lag is a rarity.
Now that you know where to bet on hockey, you can also find the latest odds and scores in the table below. Toggle between the NHL, World Cup, Champions Hockey League, and Switzerland National League to get filtered results.
How To Bet On Hockey
You'll find plenty of overlap between hockey and other sports in terms of how to bet it. However, there are some unique twists here and there. Allow us to explain how to bet on hockey:
This type of bet is a staple of any sport. How to bet hockey moneyline is as simple as picking who the straight-up winner will be between two teams. Negative odds (-) implies that a team is the favorite, while plus-value lines (+) are slotted for the underdog.
But in hockey, there's also an additional three-way moneyline (sometimes called 60-minute line). The third option you can wager on is a draw. Therefore, overtime does not count in this ice hockey betting type. The bet ends at the conclusion of regular time.
This is essentially hockey's version of a point spread and eerily reminiscent of run lines you'll find in baseball wagering. Oddsmakers always set the line at 1.5 goals going both ways.
To cover, the favorite must win by two goals or more. Whereas the underdog has more cushion, they cover with an upset victory or a one-goal loss.
Puck line generally accounts for overtime, too. So long as there's a "sudden death" or "golden goal" rule, the underdog will always cover if the game extends past regulation.
Over/under hockey betting is concerned only with the number of goals tallied by both teams. Bookies pre-set a total and it's on the bettors to choose whether more or less goals will be scored by the conclusion of the game.
By and large, the sweet spot for hockey totals is between five and six-and-a-half goals. Say the over/under is set to a whole number like six, if the game ends 4-2, then the bet is considered a "push" and money is returned to the bettor — effectively making it a tie.
Here's one of the best hockey bets that's exclusive to the sport. The easy way to think of it is as a goal total "on steroids." Essentially, it's an over/under wager on the total number of goals scored across ALL games on a given day.
Let's say its a Friday and there are 12 games on the NHL schedule that day. The total might be set to 68.5 goals. This gives you a betting interest on every single game being played, which adds another layer of excitement to NHL betting.
Beyond these four hockey bet types, there's also props and futures with hockey. These wagers are the same as other sport counterparts. With props, you're gambling on specific outcomes within a game (e.g. which player will net the game's first goal), while futures are long-term bets on, say, a championship winner or individual award recipients. With that said, you're all caught up on hockey betting terms!
Ice Hockey Betting Strategies
Before we let you run off and gamble on hockey, it's our duty to share some ice hockey betting strategies. We learned these the hard way (losing money) so you don't have to suffer the same fate. So pay close attention to these betting on ice hockey tips:
Be Selective With Your Bets
All too often, we see bettors take a "more is better" approach with betting — throwing money at dozens of different hockey lines. Sure, that might make betting fun, but it's not the way to win long-term.
The best way to bet on ice hockey is to find value, whether over or undervalued plays. Remember earlier how we said bookmakers have a tendency to overlook hockey odds since it's less popular than other sports? Well, it's on you to find these hidden-gem lines. Doing so makes you a betting expert on hockey.
Once you've identified a good line, pound the bet hard money-wise. This way, you may be winning fewer bets since you're not wagering as much, but when a wager does pan out, you really rack up the award. We've found this less-is-more approach to be the best hockey betting system.
Rely On Hockey Betting Stats
By now, you've probably heard about advanced stats infiltrating the basketball world. However, fewer people are aware a similar rise is occurring with hockey betting stats. In fact, it's a great hockey betting formula.
Nowadays, there's a hockey stat for everything. While we could write an entire piece on these metrics, we'll keep it short and simple here.
Look, no position is as important in hockey as the goaltender. Not long ago, it was an incredibly tough position to predict performance. However, the emergence of stats like 5v5 save percentage (SV%) and goals saved above average (GSAA) has taken the guessing game out of it.
Likewise, similar stats exist for team offensive performance. A few to look out for include Corsi for percentage (CF%) and adjusted scores. Let the data drive your betting decision-making instead of your "gut."
Welp, those are just some of the best ways to bet hockey. Now it's on you to take action and start betting on hockey games. The sportsbook list below is the perfect starting point. Just sign up, fund your account (earning a sign-up bonus in the process), and you're ready to wager on this great ice sport!