Have Fun Finding the Best Hockey Betting Sites
No-one is completely sure about the exact origins of ice hockey: Canada lay the biggest claim to its invention with reports of games dating back to the early 18th century, but there are a number of countries that would dispute this suggestion.
What we do know is that in the present day, this is one of the most popular sports in North America and it has a huge following in Scandinavia and much of continental Europe too. It’s a big attraction for the betting community as well, so here is our guide to the sport along with some advice on finding the best hockey betting sites online.
The Big Leagues
If you want to know how to bet on hockey, it’s important to understand how the sport works and the main events that you are going to be betting on. The biggest hockey division in the World is the National Hockey League (NHL) in North America. It’s mainly made up of teams from the United States of America, but there are some from Canada added in.
The sport is also played widely across Europe in countries where other winter sports are popular, and there are busy professional leagues across the continent. Ice Hockey is also a regular feature at the Winter Olympics, and there will certainly be lots of opportunities to bet on hockey, particularly when the competition reaches its final stages.
That’s a brief guide to the main divisions, and we’ll be using these as examples as we move through the guide, but we’ll now look at what ice hockey betting lines are available.
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I Bet They Win
In any sport, it pays to stick to the basics if you are new to it and for those learning how to bet on hockey, that means starting with the match result. If you are using a US based bookmaker, this may be referred to as a moneyline bet, but for most of us, it’s all about backing one of the two sides on show to win the game.
A draw is a possible option for ice hockey matches, so you have three possible outcomes in this market – a win for either team or a tied game at the end of it. The key to unlocking profits here is to do plenty of research. The form is vital, and because teams play each other on a regular basis, there should be plenty of head to head stats that will aid you in carrying out that research.
Something on the Side
When it comes to sports betting hockey may not have the widest set of side markets, or prop bets as they are referred to in some parts of the world, but that’s OK. For many punters, that is the key to its appeal because it helps to keep things really simple rather than a complicated affair with lots of extra markets to work through.
Of the bets that are available, total goals is the most common and probably the most popular away from the match result. All the best hockey betting sites will publish this option and, as the name suggests, it’s all about staking on how many goals you think will be scored in the match.
Ice hockey betting lines will be set, and they are likely to start at 2.5 and end at 8.5. Use your judgement to decide how many goals you think will land and then bet above or below one of those sets of lines.
Once again, research here is key, and it should be easy to identify teams that are involved in high scoring matches in the lead up to the next game. Similarly, low scoring sides will be easy to pick out, and you also have that list of head to head results for added information. Add up all of that info, and you are well equipped for success with the total goals hockey betting lines.
Those lines are available for the overall match, but they are also quoted for both of the two teams on show. Only the best sites will take these particular bets on hockey, but there can be some high prices, so they are worth seeking out. Pick either or, if you want, both of the teams, and bet over or under the goal lines that the sportsbooks set.
The Obscure End of the Markets
The majority of ice hockey betting markets that are made available will focus on teams; whether it’s a win or points scoring. There is, however, a small set of options on players to score at any time during the game. This bet will only tend to arrive for the big leagues, most notably the NHL, and you may find that only one or two sportsbooks are actually quoting any odds, but the bet is there on occasions for those who want to seek it out.
That really covers all of the bets on hockey, but from here, things can move to more specialist areas. The fast-paced nature of the game makes it a perfect choice for those who like to bet in play once the game has started. Match result and total points should both be available along with those occasional goal scorer bets too. If this is important to you, make sure that your sportsbook quotes for live ice hockey betting before you sign up.
On the Handicap
Occasionally, a bookmaker is asked what the puck line in betting hockey markets is? This sounds like a complicated bet, but in reality, it is quite easily explained. In other terminology, it can be referred to as the spread or the handicap and it involves giving one team a notional head start in terms of goals.
In this sport, the hockey betting lines are always set at +/- 1.5 and, if you are betting on the stronger team, they would need to win by more than two goals in order for you to land a winner. Alternatively, a bet on the weaker side will come in if they lose by less than two goals.
So, when you hear the term what the puck line in betting hockey markets is, the explanation is really quite easy. If you have previously used the handicap or spread line in any other sport, then you’ll know what the sportsbooks are talking about here.
Find Your Perfect Ice Partner
There are a number of things to take on board if you are going to place bets on hockey and be successful. We’ve mentioned the markets and the leagues around the world that you can bet on and that’s an important grounding, but there are many more aspects that should fit in with your strategy.
Part of the key to profitably is to find the best hockey betting sites out of the many that are available across the world wide web. Most, if not all, bookmakers list markets for ice hockey, but there are some important factors that will make some operators much better to work with than others.
One of those factors is price, and for anyone betting on hockey, it’s an obvious benefit to find a sportsbook that provides competitive odds that are in touch with the rest of the market. Making a winning bet is a great feeling, but no-one wants to miss out on potential profits simply because their bookmaker publishes poor odds that are easily beaten by the rest of the industry.
But how do you check on this point? There are two ways in which to answer that question, and the first approach is to log on to one of the bigger odds comparison sites and look at a selection of prices. This is a common option, and you are welcome to try it, but it could be a flawed strategy.
The reason for this is that even the biggest sites only carry around 25 bookmakers, whereas there are over 100 online. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that you could easily be overlooking a really strong bookie who offers great prices for your bets on hockey.
The only way to address this is to do your own research but don’t worry as this can be a fast process. Find a sportsbook that appears promising and just check around two to three sets of odds in the result betting for a specific game.
Competitive odds can then be backed up by regular price boosts that just add in and give a little extra value. These are relatively rare in ice hockey but may well kick in during the latter stages of the Stanley Cup or the finals of the Olympic tournaments.
Most of the best bookmakers will list special offers and promotions for all of their existing clients, but it is rare to find any of them relating specifically to ice hockey. You can, however, get another lift on your ice hockey bets by taking generic deals such as acca insurances, acca boosts and free bet refunds which can be used for any sport. Look for a list of promos as part of your hockey betting strategy, and this is another excellent way to spot a great sportsbook.
Finding the right sportsbook to play with is an important part of your overall ice hockey betting approach, and it’s just as vital as the analysis you use in which to pick out some winners. The odds are key but so is choice and that means looking for a bookmaker that has plenty of markets to pick from.
Every sportsbook should quote prices for the match result, but only the best hockey betting sites will go beyond that and list the small range of side bets that are open for the big games. Live betting on hockey should also be available, and even if you’re the type of punter who doesn’t like to get involved with the in-play markets, it’s a mark of a good bookie to provide this service.
Consider that important mix of choice and value, and you can build up a preferred portfolio of sportsbooks who will provide you with the best way to bet on hockey.
Skate Your Way to Great Profits
This guide has been published to give you a brief introduction to ice hockey as a sport, together with the big events that you can bet on. We’ve also listed all of the main markets that are available for betting on hockey together with some of the more obscure bets that can be found down the line.
When it comes to sports betting hockey is no different from any other discipline in the sense that you need to make sure that you have a good sportsbook on your side. You can sign up with as many bookmakers that you feel comfortable with, and that can be a good thing because you are taking advantage of all those great welcome offers but be sure that each one gives that perfect mix of choice and value that we’ve outlined in the previous section.
Now we come to the point where you need to take over and go out into the ice hockey betting world on your own. Take on board all of that advice and look to back some winners. You can always do it the lazy way by looking for ice hockey tipsters but be sure to assess their records before following their bets and always try to avoid paying for tips if possible.
The best approach is to develop an ice hockey strategy of your own, and this starts with basic research into form and head to head results. These will help to give you some focus when it comes to betting on the match result and in any of the total goals markets that are available.
Once you move on to an advanced level, you can look at more complicated betting lines while getting involved within play bets and the puck line. It’s a thrilling sport that can be enhanced with some winning bets so do that research, find the best hockey betting sites from those that operate online and you’re on your way.