Not long ago Nevada-based casinos and offshore online sportsbooks were the only way to bet on the NHL. Since then, NHL wagering has come mainstream. A number of provinces in Canada and over a dozen states in the USA and have recently legalized sports gambling. This legalization has brought much-needed regulation to the industry, allowing for safer wagering at the best betting sites in Canada and the United States.
An additional benefit is that increased competition amongst sportsbooks allows bettors to capitalize on odds comparisons across several different platforms. Getting the best odds levels playing the field against the sportsbooks.
Money Line Wagers
The most popular form of hockey wagering is the moneyline. Moneyline wagering requires bettors to pick the winner of the game, but bookmakers adjust the payouts according to their odds. When betting on the favorite, you lay your bet, risking more than you expect to win back. When you bet on the underdog, you receive more back than your original bet.
Moneyline odds are represented in hundreds. A minus number indicates the favorite, and a positive number the underdog. To wager on a -400 favorite, the bettor will need to lay $400 for every $100 he hopes to win in return. Conversely, betting on a +400 underdog would yield $400 for every $100 bet.
Total Goals Bets
Also known as the over/under. NHL total goal bets are based on the total number of goals scored in a game. The wager is on whether the total goals will be over or under the number set by the bookmaker.
If the over/under for the Colorado Avalanche vs. the Vegas Golden Knights is 5.5, you’ll need at least 6-goals scored to win on the over, and no more than 5-goals scored in total to win the under. In situations where the final goals scored equal the total goals scored, this results in a “push” and the bet amount is refunded.
Puck Line Wager
The NHL puck line is a goal spread and is similar to the run line in baseball. Bets are based on a 1.5 goal spread where bettors can either lay 1.5 goals with the favorite or take 1.5 goals with the underdog.
An example would be the New York Rangers +1.5 goals at odds of -110 vs the Boston Bruins. A wager on New York will win if the Rangers win the game or lose by one goal. Conversely, a wager on the Boston Bruins would be at -1.5 goals at an odds of -100. The Boston bet would win only if the Bruins win by 2 or more goals.
Proposition betting is commonly known as prop betting. Most prop bets are not tied to the final score or outcome of a game, but to individual events. Props are considered novelty or exotic bets since they can deal with anything from the result of the Super Bowl coin toss to an individual player or team game or season milestones.
Prop bets are usually very simple, of the yes-or-no, over-or-under variety. An example might be if Connor McDavid will score more or less than 1.5 goals in a game, or if the Boston Bruins will record a shutout.
A sports futures bet is a wager on a series or an award that will finish in the future. Different than wagering on a single game, futures bets are often placed on the results of the entire season. Bettors wager on how many points a team might accumulate during the season, and bets are settled at the conclusion of the year.
Other futures bets include if a team might win a championship or even their division, or whether a player wins a major award such as MVP or reaches a specific milestone such as winning a scoring title or leading the league in assists.
The “Grand Salami” bet is an old and popular hockey bet that allows bettors to have a rooting interest in every game on a particular night.
The Grand Salami bet is a Total Goals bet played out across every NHL game played on a given day. The over/under on the total number of goals scored across the entire NHL instead of just two teams.