The most common form of betting on hockey is moneyline wagering – simply betting on which team you think will win the game, with the moneyline price on that team determining how much you could win on your bet. The National Hockey League may rank a distant fourth among the four major sports in the United States, but that hasn't stopped sportsbooks from posting lines on the NHL. Bettors who are willing to put some effort into handicapping the National Hockey League are often rewarded by the public's nonchalance to the sport, as oddsmakers don't spend the same amount of time creating NHL odds as they do with more popular sports, such as football or basketball. Hockey bettors will find lower betting limits on NHL games than they will in the NFL or NBA, something which is generally seen as an acknowledgment by the sportsbooks that they are less comfortable accepting bets on the NHL than they are on the other two sports.
Before a person can start to bet the NHL, it's important they have a solid understanding of the money line. The money line is the most common method of betting the NHL, although there is also a puck line. While betting on the winner of the game, is the most popular method of betting the NHL.
Hockey Puck Line
While betting on the winner of the Hockey game, the moneyline as shown above, is the most popular method of betting the NHL, there is also the puck line. Baseball bettors will recognize this as being quite similar to the run line. When betting the puck line, bettors can either lay 1.5 goals with the favorite or take 1.5 goals with the underdog.
Bettors also have the option of betting on the total number of goals scored in a game. The sportsbooks will post a number, generally between 5 and 6.5, and bettors can wager the number of goals scored in the game will be greater (over) than the posted number or less (under) than the posted number. There is one primary difference in betting hockey totals as opposed to betting basketball and football totals. Because scoring in hockey is so much lower than in football or basketball, the bookmakers are reluctant to change the number of a total and instead will often adjust the odds.
The Grand Salami
The Grand Salami is practically an institution for hockey bettors. The Grand Salami allows hockey fans to have an interest in every game being played on a particular day for the cost of one bet. The Grand Salami works by sportsbooks that allow bettors to wager over or under the total number of goals scored in all of the games played on a particular day. If there are 10 games on a given day, the Grand Salami total will generally be around 53 to 60, depending on the particular games. Just as with regular totals, there will be times when bettors are risked to give higher odds on betting the over or the under.