The most popular Ice Hockey league in the world returns soon for a new season, and it is time for us to provide some tips to beginners and less experienced punters.
In this article, we will briefly explain the different betting opportunities a hockey game can present, as well as some key statistics to look out before you place your bets.
In ice hockey, betting options are similar to those offered on other North American sports:
– The Money Line is where you bet on the winner of a match. In ice hockey there always has to be a result and there are no draw, so this is a 2-result market. Always double check that OT (over time) are included.
– The Handicap Line: like in many other sports, it can be an attractive option when you think a big favorite will win very easily or if you predict the underdog will keep the score close.
– Over/Under (Totals): Lines are usually set at 5 or 5.5 goals for most games.
– Team Goals: Similar to the above market but for one team only.
Many different factors can influence the outcome of a game, always make sure to do your homework before betting:
– Looking at Shot-Attempts rather than goals widens the sample size. The correlation between shot attempts and shots is extremely high, and more shots lead to more goals. This is the general rule, you will always see lucky/unlucky teams once in a while.
– Corsi is the statistic that refers to close games: it is only measured when the score is within a goal in the first two periods and tied in the third period. The formula is: “Shot attempts for” minus “Shot Attempts against”. Positive Corsi numbers tells you that the team spends more time in the offensive zone than the defensive zone.
– Fenwick is calculated the same way as Corsi except that blocked shots are removed. This statistic is useful if you want to evaluate a team without the influence of a good or bad goalie.
– PDO: this figure is relevant for measuring the “luck” of a team or player, and can show if this team or player will likely get “back to normal” as the sample size increases. PDO measures shooting percentage + save percentage: a PDO of over 1.000 is considered lucky while a PDO of under 1.000 is considered bad luck. These numbers should trend towards 1.000 over the course of a long season.
– Save Percentage (Saves/Shots Against): one the most important statistic in ice hockey, goalies hold a crucial position and are often a deciding factor in close games. All time record for a NHL season was achieved by Canadian goalie Elliott with an impressive 94% rate.
Just like pitchers in baseball, always make sure you know who will guard the net before you place a bet.
This list of statistics is not exhaustive but should be helpful enough for you to start analyzing games more carefully. The more knowledge, the greater understanding, and this is true for any sport.
If you have any question, please drop a comment or contact us directly.