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The National Hockey League is one of the most popular sports in all of Canada, far more popular than many of US’s other top sports, and there are many different ways for gamblers to wager on these fast-paced, action-packed games.

Money Line Wagering

The most popular form of wagering on NHL games is known as a money line wager. For this, odds on each team are listed and the punter can then bet on either team to win the game. The bet will be considered a winner if the team they select wins the game, regardless of whether they win in regulation or in overtime/shootout.

As an example, if the Toronto Maple Leafs are playing the Ottawa Senators and the line is Toronto -150 or Ottawa +130, you would need to wager $150 to win $100 on Toronto. If you wanted to bet Ottawa, you would need to wager $100 to win $130.

If the final score was Ottawa 3 – Toronto 2, those that wagered on Ottawa would win the bet, while those that selected Toronto would lose the bet. It’s simple and it’s easy to follow, which is why this is the first choice for many gamblers. It’s not the only way to bet on an NHL game though.

Puck Line Wagering

Another popular form of wagering is known as puck line wagering. With a puck line wager you are betting on whether or not a team will win or lose by more or less than 1.5 goals.

Puck line wagers are a great way to get better odds on teams that are heavy favorites on the money line, and therefore not worth a bet. The only catch is the heavily favored team will need to win the game by at least two goals.

As an example, if the New York Rangers are playing the Edmonton Oilers and the line on the game is New York Rangers -200 or Edmonton Oilers +180, the puck line will offer more favorable odds on the Rangers and less favorable odds on the Oilers. The puck line may be Rangers -1.5 +110 or Oilers +1.5 -130.

So, if your are betting the puck line you would wager $100 to win $110 for the Rangers to win by at least two goals, or you would wager $130 to win $100 for the Oilers to lose by less than two goals. In this instance you would also win the bet if the Oilers win the game.

If the final score is New York 2-Edmonton 1, the puck line wagers on Edmonton would win, despite the fact that the Oilers lost the game. However, money line wagers on the Oilers would lose because they did not actually win the game.

Totals Wagering

In addition to wagering on which team will win or lose the game, punters can also wager on the total number of goals that are scored in any given game. Typically hockey goal totals are set at between 5 and 6 goals per game, depending on how well each teams’ goaltenders are playing, how their offenses have been performing and if they have good defences or not.

The odds on hockey totals are typically 11/10. That means gamblers will need to wager $110 to win $100 on the totals bet.
As an example, lets say the Philadelphia Flyers are playing the Chicago Blackhawks and the total 5. If the final score is 4-3, then bettors who wagered on the OVER would collect. If the final score is 2-1, then bettors who wagered on the UNDER would win the bet. If the final is 3-2, all wagers would be refunded as the total is exactly five, making the bet a push.

3 Way Wagering

With so many hockey games going to overtime, many gambling websites will offer a three way betting line, similar to those offered in soccer wagering. There will be three different options bettors can wager on and the odds will be more favorable to gamblers since there are three potential outcomes instead of just two.

You can bet on which team will win in regulation or you can bet that the game will go to overtime. If the Los Angeles Kings are playing the San Jose Sharks a three way line could look like this:

Los Angeles Kings +110 (Wager $100 to win $110)

San Jose Sharks +150 (Wager $100 to win $150)

Overtime +220 (Wager $100 to win $220)

If the score at the end of regulation is Los Angeles Kings 3 – San Jose Sharks 1, those who wagered on the Kings would be winners, while the other two options would be losers. If the score at the end of regulation is San Jose Sharks 2 – Los Angeles Kings 1, those who wagered on the Sharks would be winners, while the other two options would be losers. If the score is tied 2-2 at the end of regulation, the overtime wager would be a winner, while wagers on each team would be losers.

These wagers do not factor in the eventual winner of the game if it goes to overtime. So if you bet the Los Angeles Kings +110 on the three way line and the Kings win in overtime, this wager would still be graded as a loser.

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