Hockey with a puck is very popular in Russia and other Northern Hemisphere countries, but in the world it is not as common as other popular sports games. Nevertheless, all leading bookmaker’s offices, among others, offer a variety of options for betting on major hockey competitions. From our material you will learn about the basic rules of this exciting game and the main principles of placing bets on hockey matches.
As in many other gaming sports, the goal of a hockey game is to put a puck in the opponent’s goal (an accurate shot). The winner is the team that will make the most accurate throws. The game takes place in three periods of 20 minutes net time, that is, without stopping.
In case of a draw, as a rule, an extra time (5, 10 or 20 minutes) is assigned to the first thrown puck, and if the score has not changed and in overtime, the teams hold a series of post-match shots (free throws), the result of which determines the winner of the match.
At the same time there are six hockey players on the field from each side (five field players and a goalkeeper), although there are 20 or more players on the teams’ roster for the match.
The number of substitutions here is not limited due to heavy loads (the weight of hockey equipment ranges from 15 kg for a field player to almost 30 kg for a goalkeeper), and most often substitutions are “links”, that is five players at once. The link includes two defenders and three forwards.
Let us separately focus on the shootouts, which some people call “hockey penalties”. Most often a series of three shootouts is assigned (less often – of five) on each side. The player alone leads the puck from the center of the court to the gate, trying to beat the goalkeeper. If the main series ends in a draw, it continues until the first accurate shot, taking into account the sequence.
Main Ice Hockey Betting Markets
The following markets when placing bets on hockey with a puck:
- Money line. As in other sports games, it is a bet on the winner of a match (can be either a winner in regular time or a winner with extra time included) or a draw in regular 60 minutes;
- Fora. Bets of this type are awarded by the betting company in order to equalize the chances of the teams. For example, a bet (-1) on one of the teams assumes that in order for this type of bet to play, this team needs to win two or more pucks;
- Total pucks. The total number of goals scored by both teams in the match. It may be more or less than a certain number of goals scored. For example, Total (+4.5) means that in order for this bet to play, the teams must throw five or more pucks to each other;
- Total pucks, taking into account the extra time. Since there is always the possibility of extra time in a hockey game, Pinnacle BC also offers options for betting on the total number of goals, taking overtime into account.
Major ice hockey competitions
The main international club leagues are the NHL (National Hockey League), which brings together the hockey clubs of the USA and Canada, and the KHL (Continental Hockey League), which includes hockey clubs from Belarus, China, Finland, Kazakhstan, Latvia and Russia. The national championships of the Czech Republic, Sweden, Finland and Germany are also among the leading leagues in the world.
Competitions in each of them are held according to similar principles: first (most often from September to March) a regular championship is played when each team plays one, two, three or even four laps, and then in the playoffs (March-May) the winner of the tournament is determined, who is awarded the Stanley Cup (in the NHL) or Gagarin Cup (in the CHL).
In addition, there are also competitions of the national teams – the annual world championship (in April-May), the Olympic ice hockey tournament as part of the Winter Olympic Games (once every four years), Eurotour (annual tearing down of the strongest European teams – Russia, Sweden, Czech Republic and Finland).
Factors to be considered in hockey betting
As in other sports, in order to place correct bets on ice hockey puck, you need to carefully study the statistics and be able to use them. Of course, you should always consider the home field factor, especially since in the NHL and especially in the KHL teams often have to make several long-distance flights in a few days, which of course affects the physical condition of guests.
In hockey, the position of the goalkeeper is very important, and the famous saying “a goalkeeper is half a team” can be seen most fully here. Therefore, the data on the reliability of a particular gatekeeper should always be taken into account.
In addition, if you look at the statistics of the NHL teams (and other leading leagues) on the number of goals scored in one match, you can find that it is relatively stable, and from this fact, you can also take advantage by betting on “total more” or “total less” in matches with the corresponding club.