World
close

View Sportsbooks, Odds and Promotions available in your state.

backgroundLayer 1
BETTING

How To Bet the NHL Playoffs: 5 Tips To Keep in Mind During the Postseason

Evan Rodrigues Florida Panthers Florida

The NHL playoffs offer prime betting chances. Home ice advantage holds sway, but surprises abound. When series are tied, lean towards the higher seed. Goalies often steal the spotlight, and low-scoring games dominate. Boldness tempered with wisdom pays off in the postseason.

PR SELECT SCORE: 5
Mobile Bettor
PR SELECT SCORE: 5
First Bet Reset Up to $250 Back in Bonus Bets
  • Dynamic Betting Variety
  • User-Friendly Interface
  • Daily Odds Boosts
  • Multilingual Support
PR SELECT SCORE: 5
Diehard Sports Fan
PR SELECT SCORE: 5
Bet $5 Get $150 in Bonus Bets
  • Dynamic Betting Variety
  • User-Friendly Interface
  • Daily Odds Boosts
  • Multilingual Support
PR SELECT SCORE: 5
Diehard Sports Fan
PR SELECT SCORE: 5
New Users: Bet $50 Get $250 in Weekly Bets
Highlights
  • Lucrative Rewards Program
  • Exciting Odds Boost Promotions
  • User-friendly Interface
  • Depth of sports coverage

The NHL playoffs are just around the corner, so strap yourself in and prepare for what’s set to be a wild ride all the way to the Stanley Cup finals.

The playoffs represent some of the best betting opportunities as it’s all or nothing in every single game and you will get more bang for your buck (hopefully).

Here are five tips to keep in mind and improve your chances of winning your bets when placing your bets at the top-rated sportsbooks.

2024 NHL Playoffs Schedule

Saturday, April 20:

New York Islanders vs. Carolina Hurricanes at 05:00 PM ET
Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Boston Bruins at 08:00 PM ET

Sunday, April 21

Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Florida Panthers at 12:30 PM ET
Washington Capitals vs. N.Y. Rangers at 03:00 PM ET

Editor’s note: The Western conference matchups are still unknown. 


Home Ice Advantage


This one might seem obvious but it really is the case when it comes to the NHL playoffs with home advantage in the post-season only falling below 50% twice since 2008 (45% and 48% respectively).

Home advantage peaked in 2014 when 69% of teams won their home games, but it’s worth noting that home advantage doesn’t mean a guaranteed win. Nothing is ever guaranteed in the NHL and there have been plenty of shocks in recent years.

The reason home advantage is so significant in the NHL playoffs is because the higher-seeded teams play games 1, 2, 5 and 7 on their home ice, which gives them a chance to go into game three 2-0 up in the series and if it comes down to a game seven they will be on home ice.

So home advantage is key but mainly only over the best-of-seven game series, a once-off game on any given night could go either way. Home advantage doesn’t always have to mean you bet on the favorite, the underdogs in the series will get their two games at home minimum and could also be worth targeting in these matchups if the price is right.

Samuel Bolduc New York Islanders New York

Bet the Higher Seed When Series Is Tied 1-1


This tip relates specifically to game three of the series but recent records have shown that the higher-seeded teams tend to win game three more often than not when the series is tied at 1-1. The higher-seeded teams have produced a return on investment (R.O.I) 16.9% of the time when the series is tied 1-1 heading into game three since 2008.

With all this said, it’s worth taking each game and matchup into consideration before placing any bets in this scenario, as it’s unwise to blindly bet on the higher-seeded team without some research or thought.

Even though we still don’t have the Western Conference matchups, below you will find the NHL Stanley Cup odds, courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook (check our Caesars Sportsbook Review)


Stanley Cup Odds

Team Odds
Carolina Hurricanes +540
New York Rangers +625
Dallas Stars +650
Edmonton Oilers +675
Florida Panthers +750
Colorado Avalance +850
Boston Bruins +1100
Vegas Golden Knights +1200
Toronto Maple Leafs +1400
Vancouver Canucks +1500
Winnipeg Jets +2000
Los Angeles Kings +2200
Tampa Bay Lightning +2200
Nashville Predators +4000
New York Islanders +6500
Washington Capitals +15000

Ride the Hot Goaltenders


This one is a tip that has served us well over the years when betting on the NHL playoffs. We find goaltenders seem to step up to the mark a lot more during the playoffs and can often pull their teams through games and even the best-of-seven games series.

However, there is a proceed-with-caution note to be added here as sometimes goaltenders step up to the mark, but sometimes this can also go the opposite way and we have often seen a starting goaltender be replaced after the first period of two having shipped way too many goals for the coaches liking.

It is best to let the playoffs develop a bit to see which goaltenders are running hot as they can often be the ones to jump on, especially when they are playing for a lower-seeded team where you know you’re going to be getting plus money almost every game for them to win, regardless of whether they are home or away.

Essentially, the best goaltender tip is to ride with the hot ones. We have seen it happen almost every season come the playoffs, a lower-seeded team’s goaltender gets hot and in every game the sportsbooks set them as underdogs and they end up winning the series and going to the next round.


Low Scoring Games


The NHL playoffs is when it matters most, this is why we see goaltenders get better: defense plays a little tighter and all around it’s much harder to get the puck into the back of the net.

Since 2014, the under has produced a profit of +21 units, which is a hell of a lot if you were just betting on unders blindly without research or analysis. In the same period, we have seen the total go over lose an eye-watering -143 units.

Interestingly, since 2014, there have only been two profitable years for betting on the over:

  • The first post-season that produced a big profit when betting overs was 2014 (+36 units), and this also correlates with our first tip when 2014 also produced the highest number of home advantage winners.
  • The second was 2022 but that one only had a profit of +1.6 units.

Overall, things get tighter in the playoffs when it is all on the line. It’s never fun betting on unders but, if you want to make some profit during the playoffs, it is the best approach long term.


Be Bold, Brave and Wise


Although it’s not a betting tip so to speak and more of a mindset tip, it is best to approach the post-season betting in a bold and brave manner. However, be cautious and wise at the same time. Go with your gut if you believe “that” player can score against his former team or if you believe a team down 0-3 in the series might win the next game in the matchup, etc.

Essentially, don’t always go with the favorite or easiest route as this can often leave you flat on your face and asking yourself why didn’t you take that underdog you fancied. Go with your gut instinct when the time feels right. Be cautious or don’t even bet when the odds aren’t in your favor or your gut isn’t giving you a hunch.


NHL Playoffs FAQs


Question: Where can I go to make a bet on the NHL playoffs?

Answer: The most secure online sportsbooks are those licensed in jurisdictions where online sports betting is legal in the United States. Among the top-rated books are Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM and Bet365.

Question: What types of bets are popular in the NHL?

Answer: The most popular bet is the moneyline bet where the odds represent which team will win a game outright. However, Totals, which involve predicting the combined score of both teams in a game, have also grown in popularity, along with the NHL player props and the Puck Line bets, which are similar to point spread bets in other sports.

Question: Do I have to bet a lot?

Answer: No, the minimum bet is as low as $1.

Caesars
Ease of Use
5.0

Simplicity and intuitiveness of the platform's design

Welcome Bonuses
4.5

Offers available upon initial signup

App Store Rating
4.5

User ratings on the Apple App Store

Play Store Rating
4.0

User ratings on the Google Play Store

Odds Quality
4.0

How the sportsbook's odds stack up against competitors

BetWay Sportsbook logo
Ease of Use
5.0

Simplicity and intuitiveness of the platform's design

Welcome Bonuses
4.6

Offers available upon initial signup

App Store Rating
4.4

User ratings on the Apple App Store

Odds Quality
4.3

How the sportsbook's odds stack up against competitors

Odds Quality
4.3

How the sportsbook's odds stack up against competitors

Bet365
Odds Quality
4.7

How the sportsbook's odds stack up against competitors

Play Store Rating
4.7

User ratings on the Google Play Store

Ease of Use
4.5

Simplicity and intuitiveness of the platform's design

Welcome Bonuses
4.3

Offers available upon initial signup

App Store Rating
4.1

User ratings on the Apple App Store

Join the
OddsTrader Newsletter
Table of Contents
oddstraderLogo
Follow us on

© OddsTrader 2024 All Rights Reserved

21+ Seek help with a gambling addiction at 1-800-Gambler. OddsTrader is licensed to operate in NJ, NY, PA, IN, CO, IA, IL, VA, WV, TN, CT, MI, AZ, LA, WY, OR, KS, DC, MA & OH.