How To Bet On Hockey In Canada

Hockey is Canada’s game.  Hockey is the sport that our country takes the most pride in, pays the most attention to and has the most emotional investment in year in and year out.  This passion spills over into betting on hockey where Canadians make up a large percentage of hockey betting handle during the NHL season.

This page will give you all of the information you will need to start betting on the game of hockey right here in Canada.  Below, I’ve outlined the best 3 sportsbooks for NHL betting in Canada, provided a detailed breakdown of the three most popular bets you can make on a hockey game, and also included a simple step by step guide to get your first hockey bet placed online within minutes.

Pro Tip: Hockey is a very high variance game.  You will go through hot and cold streaks, and because of this it’s very important that you manage your bankroll wisely.

I personally find the most value in big underdogs when betting on hockey, but this does open me up to long losing streaks at times.  That said, a few big underdog hits can wipe away a losing streak quickly so as long as I manage my bankroll and don’t allow myself to overextend chasing losses, I am able to profit long term by picking dogs in the right spots.

Where To Bet On Hockey From Canada

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These are the three best sportsbooks for Canadians interested in betting online.  They each see Canada as a growing market for sports betting and are committed to growing their brand here in Canada by offering a great product and service to Canadian bettors.

Click on any of my reviews above to learn more about each of the sportsbooks.  I breakdown the sites in depth, looking at betting options (they all offer a ton of hockey bets), offers, features, deposits/withdrawals, customer service and more.

If you truly want to make a profit betting on hockey then you should really open an account with all three betting sites.  The odds can vary significantly between the sportsbooks, so having an account with each can ensure that you get the best return on each bet you make.

For example, Sports Interaction is notorious for offering the best lines industry wide on big underdogs.  If the Canucks have odds of 3.05 at the other sites, there is a good chance that Sports Interaction will have them at odds of around 3.20.  This works the other way as well, with Sports Interaction often having the worst odds for favourites.

Popular Hockey Betting Options

There are three main bet offerings on a hockey game.  The first and most popular is the money line bet, which is simply a wager on which team will win the game, and the others are the puck line and over/under.  I will look each of these three betting options, as well as another bet I like to place (regulation time) in detail with examples below.

Money Line

The money line bet is simply a wager on which team will win the hockey game.  In the NHL, with shootouts used to break ties, there is always a winner, so this is a very popular wager with only two possible outcomes.

Here’s an example:

In this example the Red Wings are on the road to play Montreal.  The Red Wings are the favourites with odds of 1.60.  This means that if the Red Wings win then your payout would be 1.60 x your wager amount.  So a $100 bet on the Wings would pay out $160, which would be $60 in winnings.

On the flip side, a $100 bet on the Canadiens would payout $239 for $139 in winnings based on the odds of 2.39.

Puck Line

The puck line adds a spread of 1.5 goals to the game.  So the team favoured to win the game must win by 2 or more for a puck line bet on them to win, while the underdog must either win or lose by 1 or fewer goals for their puck line wager to hit.

Continuing with the above example the Red Wings have odds of 2.56 against the -1.5 puck line.  A puck line bet on the Red Wings pays out if Detroit wins the game by 2 or more goals.

On the flip side, Montreal must win the game outright or lose by just 1 goal for their puck line bet to pay out at odds of 1.53.

Over/Under

The third of the popular bets that you will usually see displayed on the main page for hockey bets is the over/under wager, also known as the total.  With this bet you are wagering on the total number of goals to be scored in the game by both teams.  The sportsbook will set a total (usually 6.0 in the NHL) and you can wager on whether the total number of goals scored will be over or under that total.

Continuing with the Detroit vs Montreal example you can see the over/under is set at 6.0, with the odds for both the over and under set at 1.91.

For example, if the game finishes 4-3 for Detroit then the over 6.0 will hit and any bets on the over will be paid out at odds of 1.91.  If the game finishes, say 2-1 for Detroit then the under bets would be the winners. If there are exactly 6 goals scored in the game (4-2 for example) then the over/under bets would push and be returned.

Regulation Time

There are several other bets you can make on a typical hockey game other than the main three.  To see the full list of betting lines for a game at SportsInteraction.com you need to click on the team names header.

One of these other bets is the regulation time bet and it’s a wager that I often make.  Regulation time bets in hockey are also known as 3-way bets because there are three possible outcomes: Team A, draw, Team B.  If the game goes into overtime the bet is graded as a draw.

Let’s look at an example to show you the difference in odds by betting either team to win the game in regulation time:

The odds for the Red Wings moved from 1.60 (money line) to 1.98 (regulation time), while the Canadiens odds moved from 2.39 (money line) to 2.94 (regulation time).  If you think Detroit wins this game in regulation, but don’t want to take the puck line which requires them to win by 2 or more goals, then perhaps the regulation line odds of 1.98 would look appealing to you.

Pro Tip: I like to take regulation time bets for teams with awful shootout records.  For example, Robin Lehner is notoriously bad in shootouts.  He has just a .545 save percentage (worst among active goaltenders with minimum 40 shots against).  If you like Vegas in a game when Lehner is in net you might as well take the regulation time line because the odds will not be in the Golden Knights favour in a potential shootout.

The flip side can also be true with certain goaltenders being highly successful in shootouts, so I would bet the regulation time line against these goalies because a shootout win would be unlikely.

Three Step Guide To Start Betting On Hockey

If you’re ready to place your first hockey bet online, follow this quick 3 step guide:

Step 1. Open a Sportsbook Account

First you will need to open an online betting account at one of the three sportsbooks I recommended above.  For this guide I will be using Sports Interaction from here on out.  They are our top rated betting site for Canadians, and I think they are a must have for hockey bettors due to the great value you can find on big underdogs.

Click here to visit SportsInteraction.com.  Then click on the ‘Open Account’ button and fill out the registration form to create your account.

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Step 2. Deposit

Next it’s time to fund your account.  Sports Interaction accepts Visa, MasterCard, Interac, iDebit, MuchBetter and paysafecard deposits.  You can see all of the deposit methods available on our Sports Interaction review.  You will have no problem getting money into or out of your SIA account.

Step 3. Bet On Hockey

It’s time to place your bets!

Once at the Sports Interaction website you can find all of the hockey betting options by clicking on the ‘Hockey’ drop down menu in the left sidebar.  You’ll see the NHL bet offerings at the top of the list, but you can also wager on International events and all of the major pro leagues worldwide.

If you select ‘NHL’ you will see a list of the night’s game in the same format of the screenshots I used above for the Detroit vs Montreal game.

Ready to bet?  Click here to visit SportsInteraction.com.

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