Bookmaker's Corner: Betting on NHL Hockey's Return
by Richard Gardner | Bodog Sportsbook Manager - 2/23/2010
NHL Hockey betting has taken a back seat to Olympic hockey betting, but when play does resume you can be sure to see a surge in betting interest as the push for the playoffs begins in earnest. This is one of the most popular times for hockey betting at Bodog’s online Sportsbook and bettors will need to make some important judgments on which teams will show up down the stretch and which ones will either fall back or remain back in the standings.
Instant $250 Free Bonus Bet from Bovada -
One team that bettors have been waiting all season to get into gear is the Detroit Red Wings. Mike Babcock’s squad has been great for the book, but not so much for the high-profile team’s loyal and plentiful backers. Bettors have been growing increasingly impatient since the Wings finished the month of October with a disappointing 5-4-3 record. Whether they can turn it all around with time left on the clock remains to be seen.
The Wings still feature a stacked roster, with offensive stars like Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg leading the way. Big Johan Franzen’s recent return to the line-up after a 55-game absence due to a left knee injury should also help Detroit, which went into the Olympic break a point out of a playoff spot in the Western Conference.
In addition to the departure of Marian Hossa to Chicago, the Wings lost a number of key secondary players over the offseason, including Jiri Hudler and Mikael Samuelsson…so they’re not quite the same team that we remember from years past. And let’s not forget about the age factor; Wings’ Captain Nicklas Lidstrom is 39 years old and can’t play as many minutes as he once did on defense.
Another team that’s been good for Bodog, albeit for completely the opposite reason, is the Phoenix Coyotes. Take a team with a small fan base that’s expected to lose and, instead, keeps on winning and you’ve got a sportsbook’s dream. (Who knew?)
The Coyotes don’t have a single superstar playing for them (Shane Doan and Ed Jovanovski are known but not huge), so it’s not surprising that they don’t get a lot of people betting on them. They do, however, bet on the Coyotes’ opponents.
The Coyotes play a strict defensive system under coach Dave Tippett and have a goaltender in Ilya Bryzgalov who can steal a game when the offense isn’t clicking. And that’s fairly often. Doan leads Phoenix with 47 points, which is good for 50th in league scoring.
Yet heading into the stretch drive, the Coyotes are fourth in the West, 11 points clear of a playoff spot, with a 37-21-5 record. While you’ve got a bit of time to consider your betting options, Phoenix may be worth the effort.
I will be posting weekly articles including betting previews, matchups and the inside scoop from a bookmakers point of view right here at Doc's Sports. Read my past articles - Click Here, and learn more about Bodog sportsbook - click here. If you're ready to set up an account and start playing I'd like to offer you a Sign up Bonus - Click Here. Enjoy the Bodog Experience.