Ice Hockey Betting at Bally Bet Sportsbook

The rink is 200 feet long, the diameter of the puck is just three inches, and the players can skate up to 30 mph. It's one of the most alien of our professional sports - a mix of skill, finesse, speed, and brutality - and it's one of the most popular sports to bet on.

We're here to talk about all things ice hockey betting, exploring the most basic of wagers - the moneyline bet - and explaining what a puck line is — it differs greatly from the blue lines, goal lines, and red lines that divide the ice.

We'll guide you through the different ice hockey leagues, and outline which ones you can wager on legally. We'll cover the National Hockey League, the most prestigious hockey league in the world as well as smaller European leagues and college hockey. We'll also touch on international hockey, which culminates every four years in the Olympic ice hockey tournament.

How to Read Ice Hockey Betting Odds


The most basic bet in ice hockey is the moneyline bet. This is a simple win/loss bet, with the winning wager paying out the odds. American odds are centered around a $100 bet, displayed using a minus sign (-) for the favorite, and a plus sign (+) for the underdog.

An even money bet is shown as +100. If you wager $100, you win $100.

Betting on the favorite is represented by a negative number. For example, if the odds are -150, you must bet $150 to win a $100 payout.

Betting on the underdog is represented by a positive number. In this case, if the odds are +150, a $100 bet will win you $150.

But you don’t have to wager $100. The same mathematical factor is used no matter what amount you bet.

If the odds read +150 and you place a $20 bet, you will win $30. On the flip side, if you are wagering on the favorite that pays at -150, your $20 bet will win you $13.33. That will come back to you as a payment of $33.33 since your original bet of $20 is also returned with your winnings.

Puck Line

To create a line similar to a point spread, ice hockey also has what it calls the puck line. The payout still comes from a separately listed moneyline, but there's a spread of goals scored. This is almost always 1.5 goals.

The favorite is listed at -1.5 goals, meaning that they have to win by at least two goals for the bet to win.

The underdog is listed at +1.5 goals, meaning that, as long as they don’t lose by two goals or more, they win the bet.

The moneyline payout is listed next to the puck line, and if your puck line bet wins, those are the odds your wager pays out.

The most common margin of victory in ice hockey is one goal, which makes the puck line bet an interesting twist on betting the favorite or underdog.


Another common way to wager on ice hockey is with an over/under bet, which is also known as a totals bet. This is a bet on the total number of goals scored in the game combined.

It's presented with an over/under line and odds for if you bet the over or if you bet the under.

For example: The line is 6.5 goals scored, the over pays -115, and the under pays -105. If you take the over, there must be seven goals scored in the game. If you win at -115, your payout on a $20 bet is $17.39. If six goals or fewer are scored and you bet the under, a $20 bet will win $19.05.

For over/under bets, the odds will never swing too far in favor of one side.

Popular Ice Hockey Bets

The three most popular bets to place in ice hockey are the three whose odds you just learned to read — moneyline, puck line, and over/under. But there are plenty of others to consider.


You can create a combination of two or more of those bets into what’s known as a parlay. The value of a parlay is that with each bet that you add to the parlay, the potential payout increases. The major downside of a parlay, however, is that all individual bets must be winners, or the parlay loses.


Proposition bets are also popular in ice hockey. These are bets on events that take place during the game and aren’t strictly related to the outcome of the game. For example, you can wager on which players will score, how many shots an individual or team will take, and the number of saves a goalie makes.


As the name suggests, these are bets on future events, like the winner of the next Stanley Cup, the winner of the NHL’s postseason awards, and which nation will win the next World Championship.

Ice Hockey Betting Tips

The best and most obvious tip for betting on sports, ice hockey or otherwise, is to never wager money that you can’t afford to lose. And, of course, always do your homework. The more you know about any given matchup, the better prepared you are to place a wager.

Here are a few other pieces of advice worth keeping in mind.

Follow the injuries

Ice hockey is a tough and physical sport, and injuries are common. If you place money on a game without knowing which players are injured and not playing, you are effectively betting with one hand tied behind your back. Do some quick research and make sure you know which skaters are out for a given game, and which skaters are returning from injury.

Goaltenders are key

No single player on the ice can alter the outcome of a hockey game more than the goaltender. A great goalie, and an in-form goalie, can completely swing the fortunes of a team.

But, and this is a very important but, all goaltenders need rest. So, when one of the top goaltenders in the league has given way to his backup for a night, that's a game you might want to take a closer look at.

Understand the purpose of odds

It’s important to understand that odds are not a prediction of an outcome.

Odds are essentially a tool used by all oddsmakers to get even betting on both sides of a game. If too much money is being placed on the Edmonton Oilers, the odds will shift to try and galvanize betting for their opponent.

Betting on the NHL

The majority of ice hockey betting in the United States is on the NHL. There are 1,312 regular season games, and then the Stanley Cup Playoffs, which can lead to a possible 105 extra games if all series go the full seven games.

The eventual winner of the Stanley Cup will have to win 16 postseason games to lift the trophy.

With so many games and so many betting options - when you include futures bets and prop bets among others - you can see why the NHL is the king of ice hockey betting.

Betting on NCAA Hockey

College sports betting is legal in all of the states where you’ll find our sportsbook. However, there are a couple of caveats that make wagering on NCAA hockey slightly different from the NHL.

In New York and Virginia, for example, you're not allowed to bet on teams located in those states. New Yorkers can wager on all college hockey teams located outside the Empire State, but none that come from New York. The same is true for Virginia. If a college team is located in the Commonwealth, you can’t wager on it. It's allowed for everyone else.

You’ll also find restrictions on individual player prop bets in many U.S. states for college sports. So, while you can wager on NCAA hockey, you’ll find that there are fewer betting options for that league.

Betting on International Hockey

Bally Bet’s international hockey options take you alphabetically from the ICE Hockey League in Austria to the Elite Ice Hockey League in the United Kingdom. Overall, we offer betting for more than 15 international leagues as well as the World Championships and Olympics.

International hockey works in the same way as the NHL and the NCAA when it comes to betting. You can wager on the moneyline, the puck line, total goals, and parlays as well as individual, team, and game props, like which team will win the first, second, and third periods.

Bear in mind that European rinks, and the rinks used in international competitions, are wider than those in North America. You'll notice that, when betting the over/under, the posted lines are higher, which reflects the more open game and the greater average score.

Get the Bally Bet Ice Hockey Betting App

As betting technology improves, mobile betting apps have become the preferred portal for most hockey bettors. And while you can play through your browser with Bally Bet, we also have a sportsbook app that lets you take the fun with you. Having been optimized for mobile devices, it’s much quicker and more responsive, and you can get up-to-the-second odds changes as well as new bets as they become available.

Joining us is easy to do with the app, too. With a few simple swipes, you can create an account, fund it, and place a wager on any of the hockey bets we’ve got going on.

Popular Ice Hockey Betting Questions

Yes. Every state that has legal sports betting has legal ice hockey betting. There are some restrictions on betting on NCAA hockey, but even in those states it's legal to place bets on professional and college hockey.

The simplest ice hockey bet, and the most popular, is a moneyline bet. This is a simple win/loss bet that pays out based on the odds you’ll see listed.

When using American odds, the favorite for an ice hockey game is indicated by a minus sign (-) or negative number. The underdog has a plus sign (+) or positive number. That means a winning bet on a favorite pays out less in profit than the amount wagered, while a winning bet on an underdog pays out more in profit than the amount wagered.

There hasn't been a tie game in the NHL since 2006, so there won’t be any ties for a moneyline bet. But your over/under bet could tie, which is why you frequently see totals lines at 5.5 and 6.5.

If the bet on an over/under ties (also called a push), your original bet is returned to you. No one wins, and no one loses.

Yes, we do. Along with a trained customer support team that is always available to provide assistance, we offer a number of self-help tools.

You can set daily, weekly, or monthly limits on the amount you deposit. You can also designate account timeouts, which are self-determined time periods where your account is inaccessible.

We also provide links to your state’s problem gambling resources, which are always free for you to use.