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What Is The Definition Of Puckline In Sports Betting?

1. The puckline is a type of point spread specific to ice hockey. The bet is based upon goals scored, with a standard spread of 1.5 goals, meaning the team must win by two for the bet to hit. 

The puckline may be adjusted to account for the favorite. Similar to a runline in baseball, the 1.5 differential may receive different odds depending on how heavily one team is favored over another. 

For example, for a December 28, 2021 game between the Arizona Coyotes and San Jose Sharks, the puckline looked like this:

For this game, the Sharks were projected to win, given the -1.5 favorite. However, the confidence that the Sharks would win by two remained low, as reflected by the odds (+120). 

If one bet on the Sharks to win by two, a $100 bet would win $120. However, if the Sharks won by one, tied or lost, the wager would be lost. On the other hand, if a bettor wagered on the Coyotes to keep the game within one goal, they would need to bet $140 to receive a $100 payout. 

Does The Puckline Include Overtime?

No, the puckline does not include overtime. 

In the previous example, the Sharks and Coyotes ended regulation tied, and therefore, those who bet on the Sharks in the puckline lost their bet. As the NHL uses a sudden death (also known as golden goal) procedure to their overtimes, the Sharks could never have covered the puckline.

What Is The Difference Between Puckline And Moneyline In Ice Hockey?

A puckline allows for bettors to account for favorites in hockey. As most hockey games end with low scores, the difference between a win and loss are minimal. Therefore, the moneyline may be a riskier bet. 

In the previous example, the moneyline for the Coyotes and Sharks game looked like this:

In order to win $100 for a Sharks win, the wager must be $210. A $100 bet on the Coyotes would garner $180. Such a wide swing based on a single goal means a riskier bet. 

The puckline seeks to mitigate this risk with the allowance to bet on the margin of victory, not only the victory itself. In the example above, the Sharks came out on top with an overtime victory of 8-7. Those who bet the moneyline on the Sharks would win their bet, as well as those who bet on the Coyotes puckline, as the game was technically tied at regulation.

How Do You Win A Puckline Bet?

In order to win a puckline bet, the favorite must win by two goals, and the underdog must win or lose by one or tie.

See More Sports Betting Lingo

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