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How to Bet on Hockey

When you think of NHL betting and the sport of ice hockey, the first state that comes to most people’s minds probably isn’t Tennessee. And yet over the last four regular seasons, the Nashville Predators are one of only 10 teams in the NHL that have maintained an average attendance capacity percentage of 100% or more. The city of Nashville and the state of Tennessee love the Predators, and that love has helped the NHL’s overall popularity grow across the state.

Now that legal Tennessee sports betting is a reality, a lot of hockey fans are curious about how they can put their knowledge and passion about the game of hockey to good use by picking some winners and betting on the NHL. Here’s a look at the different types of bets that you can make on NHL games, and how you can bet the NHL online in Tennessee.

How to bet on NHL games in Tennessee

Online sportsbooks and sports betting apps in Tennessee

When Tennessee passed legislation to legalize sports betting in April 2019, it did so with the condition that there would be no physical casinos or sportsbooks in the state. Instead, all sportsbooks that wanted to apply for sports betting licenses in Tennessee would need to be operated online. This paved the way for some great, tech-savvy online sportsbooks to enter the Tennessee sports betting market with convenient websites and mobile apps for NHL fans in Tennessee to place their bets on.

NHL bet types

There are plenty of betting options when it comes to betting on NHL games in Tennessee. Online sportsbooks include the following NHL bet types:

  • Moneyline: Betting on which team will win the game outright is referred to as betting on the moneyline. The team that is favored to win the game has its odds listed with a “-” in front of them. This number indicates how much you would have to bet to win $100, so on a -160 favorite, you would have to risk $160 to win $100. The underdog is listed with “+” odds, which let you know how much you would win if you bet $100. A +140 NHL underdog would pay out a profit of $140 on a $100 wager, or $70 on a $50 wager.
  • Puckline: Every NHL betting line also offers a puckline option, which is a 1.5-goal handicap on the betting favorite. So instead of betting on the Nashville Predators as a big moneyline favorite or the Edmonton Oilers as a big moneyline underdog in a hypothetical matchup, you could instead bet Edmonton +1.5 or Nashville -1.5 with adjusted odds. A Nashville -1.5 bet will only win if the Predators win by two goals or more, while an Edmonton +1.5 bet wins if the Oilers win the game or lose by only one goal.
  • Over/Under: Over/Under bets, also known as totals, are wagers on whether the total number of goals scored in the game will go OVER or UNDER a total posted by the sportsbook. For example, a game between the Nashville Predators and Dallas Stars might have a total set at 5.5 goals. You can bet the Over 5.5 if you believe that six or more goals will be scored in this matchup or the Under 5.5 if you think there will be five goals or less.
  • Live betting: Live betting takes place during the game, with betting lines being updated during stoppages of play and commercial breaks. You can bet on things like the results of individual periods and adjusted pucklines and moneylines
  • Futures: Bets on events like what team will win the Stanley Cup or what team will win the Western Conference are examples of future bets. Odds on future bets are adjusted throughout the season, but your bet will be locked in at the price you bet it at.
  • Parlays: Combining two or more moneylines, pucklines, or totals into one single play is known as a parlay. Potential payouts increase with each pick that you add to your parlay, but the entire parlay bet loses if a single pick contained within it loses.
  • Prop bets: Proposition bets on NHL games include player events such as will Alexander Ovechkin score a goal in today’s game, team events such as an Over/Under on how many goals one team will score, or game events like which team will score the first goal of the game. Prop bets are bets on events that take place within the game that aren’t necessarily tied to the outcome of the game.

NHL teams in Tennessee

The Nashville Predators became the first NHL team to ever play in Tennessee when they joined the league as an expansion team at the start of the 1998-99 season. After failed attempts to bring a current NHL team or the NBA’s Sacramento Kings to Nashville, the city turned its attention to requesting an expansion team instead. These efforts proved to be successful, and the Predators have had a solid fan base in Tennessee since day one.

Nashville Predators Facts

  • Owner: Predators Holdings LLC
  • General Manager: David Poile
  • Head Coach: John Hynes
  • Conference Championships: 1 (2016-17)
  • Division Championships: 2 (2017-18, 2018-19)
  • The Predators drafted Blake Geoffrion with the 56th overall pick in the 2006 NHL Draft. Geoffrion is the only player who grew up in Tennessee to ever make it to the NHL. He was born in Plantation, Florida but was raised in Brentwood, Tennessee. He played 54 games with the Predators from 2010 through 2012 and recorded six goals and seven assists during that stint.

Top 5 Nashville Predators of all-time

There have been some extremely talented players that have spent short stints with the Nashville Predators including superstar defenseman P.K. Subban, and NHL Hall-of-Famers Paul Kariya and Peter Forsberg. But this top five list is focused strictly on the contributions players have made as a Nashville Predator.

  • Pekka Rinne, Goaltender, 2005-Present: Nashville has been blessed with some great goaltending as Tomas Vokoun held down the crease with some strong play from 1998 through 2007. But since Rinne took over as the team’s starting goaltender in 2008-09, he has been a consistent rock in goal for the franchise. Rinne owns a 2.42 goals against average and a .917 save percentage over 646 career regular-season starts, is a four-time NHL All-Star, a four-time Vezina Trophy finalist, and a winner of the Vezina (awarded to the league’s best goaltender) in 2018.
  • Shea Weber, Defenseman, 2005-2016: The Predators have been a consistently strong team in the defensive end over the last two decades, and Shea Weber played a huge role in that during his time in Nashville. Weber was a five-time All-Star with the Predators and finished in the top four in Norris Trophy (awarded to the league’s best defenseman) voting five times. The defenseman also contributed in the offensive zone. He ranks tied-for-second in franchise goals with 166, fourth in franchise assists (277), third in franchise points (443), and second in games played as a Predator (763).
  • David Legwand, Center, 1998-2014: David Legwand became the first player ever drafted by the Nashville Predators when he was selected second overall in the 1998 NHL Draft. Legwand never developed into a true superstar, but he was a fan favorite and one of the key faces of the franchise during his storied 15-year career in Nashville. Legwand is the Predators’ all-time franchise leader in games played (956), goals (210), assists (356), points (566), and game-winning goals (41).
  • Roman Josi, Defenseman, 2011-Present: Roman Josi has developed into one of the best defensemen in the NHL over the last six years, making the NHL All-Star Game three times and consistently making his way into the Norris Trophy conversation. He was enjoying a career year offensively with 16 goals and 49 assists through 69 games before the coronavirus shutdown cut his 2019-20 regular season short. Josi ranks third all-time in Predators assists with 304, and at just 29-years-old the best may still be yet to come.
  • Filip Forsberg, Center, 2012-Present: Filip Forsberg has been an electric offensive star for the Predators since becoming a full-time start in 2014-15, racking up 166 goals and 187 assists (353 points) in only 458 regular-season games. The 25-year-old is a human highlight reel that will almost certainly pass Legwand for the franchise lead in goals, and he will start climbing higher on this list if he stays in Nashville long-term.

NHL betting FAQ

How does the NHL regular season work?

The NHL currently has 31 teams split into two conferences and four divisions: the eight-team Atlantic Division and eight-team Metropolitan Division in the Eastern Conference, and the seven-team Central Division and eight-team Pacific Division in the Western Conference. A Seattle-based expansion franchise, nicknamed the Kraken, is set to join the league in the 2021-22 season, taking a spot in the Pacific Division and moving the Arizona Coyotes to the Central Division to make all four divisions equal at eight teams each.

All 31 teams play 82 games during the regular season, with one road game and one home game against each of the opposing conference’s teams and then the rest of their games within their conference. Teams are awarded two points for wins, one point for losses in overtime or the shootout, and zero points for losses in regulation. The total number of points earned during the regular season determines which teams advance to the postseason.

How does the NHL postseason work?

At the end of the regular season, the top three teams in the standings in each division are locked into the top three seeds of their division. The last two playoff spots in each conference are awarded as wild card spots to the two teams with the most points in the conference that didn’t finish in the top three of their division. Tiebreakers starting with regulation wins and head-to-head performances are used to determine the seed between teams that have the same number of points.

The first two rounds of the postseason are played within your division. The two conference division winners play the two conference wild cards in the first round, with the team who finished with the best record in the conference being paired up against the lower-seeded wild card. The first round also pairs the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds in each division.

The second round pairs the two remaining teams in each divisional bracket. The winner of these matchups compete in the conference finals, and the conference finals winners clash in the Stanley Cup Finals. Every matchup throughout the Stanley Cup Playoffs is decided through a best-of-seven series with the higher seed getting the home-ice advantage in a 2-2-1-1-1 format.

How do overtime and the shootout work in the NHL?

If both teams are tied at the end of regulation during the regular season, they play a five minute 3-on-3 overtime period to determine a winner. If neither team scores a goal during this 3-on-3 period, the game proceeds to a shootout. Each team gets three uncontested shots on goal to determine a winner. If the two teams are still tied at the end of the three-round shootout, they go into a sudden death shootout. Both teams take a turn in each round, and the shootout ends when one team scores and the other fails to score.

In the playoffs, the two teams remain at 5-on-5 and play until one team scores a sudden-death goal to win the game. Playoff overtime periods are 20 minutes long with intermissions in between them.

What happens to my NHL over/under bet if the game goes to overtime?

Any goal scored in overtime counts towards your over/under bet. If the game goes to a shootout, the goals scored within the shootout don’t count. Only the final one awarded to the team that wins the game does. In other words, if a game goes into overtime at 2-2, the final score will always finish 3-2 and your totals bet will be graded as if five goals were scored.