The amount of information that sports betting players have at their disposal now is simply incredible. There are more and more stat categories being added all the time.
When it comes to hockey, one of the keys you should be paying attention to home and away splits. Although, truth be told, this matters in every sport. It has been shown scientifically that players play better in front of their own fans and when they are being cheered for, not against.
That’s why you will usually see the home team favored in most matchups unless the difference in talent level is that great. Let’s take a look at this hockey betting 101 handicapping strategy of focusing on home and away splits.
Home Teams Are More Successful
It should come as no surprise that most teams in the NHL have more wins at home than they do on the road, even the really bad teams. For the most part, the entire NHL is going to be .500 or above when playing on the road, and the ability to get wins on the road is what separates the best from the rest.
At the end of the 2013-14 regular season, only four teams in the NHL finished below .500 on their ice. Those teams were Florida, Buffalo, the New York Islanders and Edmonton. It should not shock anyone that three of those teams finished in last place in their division. Florida would have if they played anywhere else but in the Atlantic Division, where they finished ahead of Buffalo.
To be successful in professional sports, you have to take care of business at home. That’s crucial to making your moneyline, puckline or total picks.
Home-Ice Advantage Is In Fact An Advantage
A major reason why teams finish with better home records than on the road, and it sounds very simplistic, but teams tend to score more goals at home. They do not even have to score a lot more goals at home, but every goal counts when you get to the level of the NHL. Most teams do not even score a full goal more at home per game than they do on the road. Still, it is enough of a difference to pick up an extra win or two.
Meanwhile, teams are going to depend more on their goalies on the road. This is where you get the phrase, “stealing a game” from. But for most teams, you would probably lean on the over if they are playing at home. When the totals are usually anywhere between five and six goals per game, it does not take a lot to push it over the edge.
Do The Splits
Do your homework and study a team’s home and away splits before betting on the NHL odds. You might find the occasional team that plays better on the road than they do at home. That’s how you can find some good value and make some big-time plays. The regular season is very long and hard, and teams go through plenty of ups and downs. Over time, though, teams will usually play better and score more at home. They should get the benefit of the doubt as you are getting ready to make your NHL picks.