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Things you can Bet on in Hockey

If you bet regularly, learning how to wager on hockey is relatively straightforward. Some words might sound new to you. But there’s a chance that you already know the role of a goalie or a defender.

Knowing the basics of hockey is the starting of betting on the sport successfully. Understanding how to analyze games and what to bet on is even more essential. Once you master these things, you could bet on the NHL or Russia’s hockey leagues and still win.

Moneyline Bets

This is the most basic type of bet in all sports. Pick two teams and back one side to win. In a game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Boston Bruins, you could choose the Bruins if you believe they can topple the Canadian side.

Although this sounds obvious, the top four teams in a league will most probably beat the last four. So, when making a moneyline bet, it’s essential to look at a team’s rank on the table.

Let’s say the Bruins lead the Atlantic Division. When they face last-placed Red Wings, there’s a chance the top team will beat the last side. But when the Bruins faces third-placed Maple Leafs, you need to do more research before choose a winner.

Puck Line Bets

A puck line is the equivalent of a handicap in European football or point spreads in the NFL and baseball. Essentially, this wager helps you win a decent amount of money when backing a strong team to beat a weak team.

A little bit of explanation: bookmakers set unattractive odds for a team heavily projected to win. Let’s say the Bruins, who’ve won 39 games are meeting the Red Wings, a team with 15 wins and 44 losses.

With puck line bets, you can back the Bruins to beat the Red Wings with two or more goals. As such, they have to win 2-0, 3-1, 5-1 or in any other format provided they win by two or more goals. In that case, bookies will usually set better odds.

A side note: betting websites set puck line bets at +/- 1.5. But because half goals don’t exist, a +1.5 goal margin means two goals. Similarly, you could back a team two lose by two or more points (-1.5).

Over/Under Bets

Some people call these bets totals. That’s alright. They refer to the same thing: over or under how many goals will be scored in a hockey game. In many cases, the line is drawn at 5.5 goals.

As such, a hockey totals bet will require to predict whether a game ends with more than six goals scored or fewer than six goals. For clarity, the number refers to points scored by both teams.

Let’s say the Penguins beat the Panthers 3-2. The total number of points tallied is 5. So, if you had wagered for the game to end over 5.5, you would have lost. However, had the game finished 3-3, you would have won.

Prop Bets

Many betting experts will tell you to avoid props for a sensible reason. They are difficult to predict:

  • Who will score the first goal?
  • Will the game end with an odd/even tally of goals?
  • Who will get the first yellow card?
  • How many green cards will the ref produce?

On some betting websites, you could also be challenged to predict whether there will be a fight in a game. They happen all the time in the NHL. Read this list to find out the most famous hockey fights. Still, keep in mind that betting on props involves a lot of guessing and little chances you will win.

If you have to bet on props, do it with money you can afford to lose. You could win a lot of cash if your bet is successful. But in many cases, most proposition bets end in losses.

Correct Score

Sometimes you can research two teams’ histories and fight a pattern in the way they score. Or it could be a hunch. Regardless, you can bet the correct score in a hockey game. And if you are lucky, you could win a lot of money from it.

Correct scores tend to have significantly better odds than moneyline bets. In a game where a betting on the favorite has odds -200 (meaning you need $200 to win $100), a correct score could have odds +120. That way, a bet of $100 will bring you $120 plus your original stake.

Unfortunately, predicting correct scores in hockey is as challenging as placing a proposition bet. Teams seldom maintain a predictable score line. Instead, a better idea is to back home sides to win.

Period Wagers

A regular hockey game is divided into three equal periods. It’s similar to quarters in basketball and halves in football. That being said, some bookies let you predict which team wins a specific period.

What’s more, you can bet how a team performs in all three quarters. Let’s say you believe the Gold Knights will dominate the Hurricanes in the first two periods but trail in the third. You can bet on the two periods it wins or predict the winner in all thirds.


Futures are like props except they involve things that will happen in days, weeks or months to come. A case in point is predicting which team will win the Stanley Cup before the competition starts.

You could also predict who will win a conference or which coach will get fired before the season is over. Futures tend to come with impressive odds. But as you probably know, the odds of winning a future bet are pretty slim.

If you have to place a future, bet a few weeks before the stipulated deadline. If you intend to pick a conference winner, wait until there’s a clear leader.

 If you want to predict the Stanley Cup victors, wager only after you’ve seen the top teams face off. You’ll get a better idea of which team will likely lift the prestigious trophy.