Gambling 101: National Hockey League

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How do bettors get in on the action and what are popular NHL wagering options?

Today on Gambling 101 we are breaking down the National Hockey League.

Established in 1917, the NHL is the second oldest of the four major professional sports in North America. Puck lines are offered as the spread betting option in the NHL. Puck line favorites are saddled with a -1.5 goal pregame handicap and need to win by at least 2 goals to cash winning tickets. Pregame underdogs receive a +1.5 goal head start and must win outright or lose by just one goal. Average puck line juice ranges from +100 to upwards of +/-300 depending on the teams involved.

Also available and part of the standard “big three” hockey betting options are moneylines. Moneyline favorites are posted with a negative number while underdogs are listed with a positive price. For example, you may see a sportsbook has Buffalo at (-140) as the favorite vs Ottawa at (+120) as the underdog.

The NHL also offers total odds betting options. These odds ask bettors to predict the combined goals scored in a game. Two-way odds include regulation time and one goal is added if a match goes into overtime. Three-way goal total odds add a TIE into the mix and those bets are always graded at the end of regulation time. 

If you're more of prop better then don't worry the NHL has you covered From Stanley Cup playoff futures, to a variety of player and team props, exotic NHL betting options are plentiful.

Since NHL betting action is available throughout the year, players are reminded to set a steady pace. For more tips on being a better gambler remember to bookmark Sports Illustrated's Glossary of Terms and tune in for another Gambling 101 here on SI.com.

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