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 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), bonuses, promotions, 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, so it works both ways.
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.
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 Dallas. The Red Wings are the underdogs with odds of 2.55. This means that if the Red Wings win then your payout would be 2.55 x your wager amount. So a $100 bet on the Wings would pay out $255, which would be $155 in winnings.
On the flip side, a $100 bet on the Stars would payout $154 for $54 in winnings based on the odds of 1.54.
This is a perfect example of Sports Interaction offering higher underdog odds than the industry. Both Bet365 and Bodog have odds of 2.45 for the Red Wings in the same game. On the flip side their odds for Dallas are 1.60.
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 1.53 against the +1.5 puck line. A puck line bet on the Red Wings pays out if Detroit either wins the game or loses by fewer than 2 goals.
On the flip side, Dallas must win by 2 or more goals for their puck line bet to pay out at odds of 2.60.
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 5.5 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 Dallas example you can see the over/under is set at 5.5, with the odds for the over hitting at 1.80 and the under hitting at 2.05.
For example, if the game finishes 4-3 for Dallas then the over 5.5 will hit and any bets on the over will be paid out at odds of 1.80. If the game finishes, say 2-1 for Dallas then the under bets would be the winners.
There are several other bets you can make on a typical hockey game other than the main three. Just look at any of the screenshots above. They each show “More Betting (29)” in the top right corner. This means there are 29 other bets you could make on the Red Wings vs Stars game.
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 2.55 (money line) to 3.25 (regulation time), while the Stars odds moved from 1.54 (money line) to 1.91 (regulation time). If you think Dallas 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 1.91 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 absolutely awful in the shootout. He allowed 8 goals in 8 attempts in 16-17. If you like Buffalo in a game when Lehner is in net you might as well take the regulation time line because the chances are slim the Sabres would win in if the game goes to a 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 green ‘Bet Now’ 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, iDebit, Instant Banking and many more deposit methods. 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.
By signing up through our link you are entitled to an exclusive sign up bonus equal to your first deposit, up to $200. The bonus is easy to clear so if you’re planning on betting on hockey for the entire season I strongly suggest taking full advantage of the bonus because you will clear it very quickly if you’re planning on betting on more than a few hockey games.
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 Dallas game.
Ready to bet? Click here to visit SportsInteraction.com.