The unbelievably fast pace and non-stop action in the NHL is a big part of what makes betting on hockey so much fun. However, there is a definite learning curve when it comes to betting on the sport. Even the most experienced veterans have trouble making a profit betting on hockey because they fall in the trap of making the same mistakes over and over again. Here is a look at five hockey betting mistakes that rookies make.
Falling For The Lock Fallacy
One of the biggest fallacies in sports betting is that there is such thing as a lock. The reality is that those really don’t exist. While one team might seem like a sure bet to win a specific matchup, there really is no such thing. That is especially true in hockey where nearly a quarter of the games are decided in overtime or the shootout. A hot goalie, a little puck luck or an undisciplined performance could completely change the complexion of a game for both teams. You are only going to bet on a team that you think is going to win. Just don’t make the mistake of believing there is such thing as a lock when there clearly isn’t.
Not Betting Favorites On The Puck Line
It’s important to understand the amount of juice that comes with betting on hockey favorites. If you are betting on a heavy hockey favorite, you are risking around -150 to -200 on every wager. It’s difficult to make up that kind of juice if you lose the bet. The better approach is to play the puck line. The puck line establishes the favorite at -1.5 goals, and gives you much more favorable betting odds. There will be plenty of opportunities when favorites win big and the puck line allows you to make a bigger profit while risking less money. Consider betting favorites on the puck line.
Failing To Monitor Starting Goalies
Another big mistake that bettors make is failing to monitor starting goalies. No players have a bigger impact on a hockey game than the goalies. For example, the Washington Capitals own a 21-8-0 record when Braden Holtby is in between the pipes this season. Meanwhile, the Capitals are 2-5-3 when backup Philipp Grubauer is between the pipes. Betting on the Capitals when Holtby starts is a much different situation than betting on Washington when Grubauer starts. It’s important to monitor goalie starts in order to find the favorable matchups.
Overreacting To Certain Injuries
The Pittsburgh Penguins would have a lesser chance of winning without Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin in their lineup than they would with them. However, if Crosby and Malkin played while Patric Hornqvist and Riley Sheahan were out with injuries, would their chances to win really decrease that much? The NHL is a star-driven league but injuries to third and fourth line players don’t matter nearly as much since there usually isn’t a major drop off between them and their replacements. Don’t make the rookie mistake of overreacting to certain injuries.
Failing To Find The Best Odds
The final mistake that most rookie hockey bettors make is failing to find the best odds. While you likely already know that different sportsbooks offer different lines, you would be surprised by how many rookie bettors fail to shop around. While one sportsbook might have an underdog listed at +115, another might have them at +130, which would obviously be the better odds. Meanwhile, the same is true with favorites as one site might have a favorite at -150 while another site might have that same team at -125. Make sure you shop around and find the best odds possible in order to get the best value for your bets.