NHL weekly betting guide: True moneylines for every game
Back to life. Back to reality.
While the number of star players returning to NHL rosters last week probably wasn't the focus of Soul II Soul's hit song, it should have had hockey fans doing some '90s-style dancing. Meanwhile, I was just happy that I no longer had to make educated guesses about how much Nathan MacKinnon, Jack Hughes, Drew Doughty, and Max Pacioretty mean to any game's win probability.
Before the season, we provided a three-chapter series on how to use the regular-season point-total market to create team ratings, how to interpret home-ice advantage, and then how to use those to create your own moneylines.
I've taken the advanced stats I value most from those games, the market rating for regular-season win-total markets, and last season's advanced stats to rate each team. I've also made adjustments for injuries to key players.
With roughly 30% of the season played, here's how I'm weighing those three factors as of Dec. 6:
We're pulling away from last season's advanced metrics, for reasons exemplified by a pair of eastern Canadian teams: the Montreal Canadiens and Ottawa Senators. Relying on last season's numbers makes them look better than they really are.
However, the regular-season point total markets painted a different picture, as hope for a step forward for Ottawa wasn't reflected in its 76.5-point projection. Meanwhile, despite the Canadiens' run to the Stanley Cup Final, their missing pieces tempered expectations, which led to an 89.5-point projection. In hindsight, even that looks too high.
Both teams are among the worst in my statistical ratings this season, and the longer that continues, the more my rating is legitimized.
The cheat sheet
The following includes my fair price on the games (true moneyline) and the moneyline price I would need to bet either side. I just need a 1% edge for a favorite if we're getting better than a fair price on the team that's more likely to win. For the underdog, I'll need 4% or better to make it a bet. On games that I have projected near a coin flip, a 2.5% edge is enough to be worthwhile wager.
|DATE||GAME||TRUE ML||PRICE TO BET|
|DEC. 6||COL@PHI||-160/+160||COL -153/PHI +190|
|ANA@WSH||+168/-168||ANA +200/WSH -161|
|OTT@NJD||+166/-166||OTT +197/NJD -159|
|ARI@DAL||+209/-209||ARI +253/DAL -200|
|PIT@SEA||-105/+105||PIT -101/SEA +124|
|LAK@VAN||+101/-101||LAK +111/VAN +110|
|DEC. 7||NYI@OTT||-103/+103||NYI +107/OTT +114|
|TB@MTL||-113/+113||TB -108/MTL +132|
|NSH@DET||-125/+125||NSH -120/DET +147|
|CBJ@TOR||+219/-219||CBJ +266/TOR -209|
|ANA@BUF||+141/-141||ANA +166/BUF -135|
|CAR@WPG||+112/-112||CAR +132/WPG -108|
|FLA@STL||-120/+120||FLA -115/STL +141|
|NYR@CHI||-116/+116||NYR -112/CHI +137|
|MIN@EDM||+108/-108||MIN +127/EDM -104|
|CGY@SJS||-107/+107||CGY -103/SJS +126|
|DEC. 8||PHI@NJD||+129/-129||PHI +152/NJD -123|
|COL@NYR||-139/+139||COL -133/NYR +164|
|BOS@VAN||-106/+106||BOS -102/VAN +125|
|DAL@VGK||+132/-132||DAL +156/VGK -127|
|DEC. 9||CHI@MTL||+111/-111||CHI +131/MTL -107|
|ANA@CBJ||+110/-110||ANA +129/CBJ -105|
|TBL@TOR||+141/-141||TB +167/TOR -136|
|NSH@NYI||+113/-113||NSH +133/NYI -109|
|DET@STL||+115/-115||DET +135/STL -110|
|BOS@EDM||+110/-110||BOS +129/EDM -106|
|CAR@CGY||+111/-111||CAR +131/CGY -107|
|WPG@SEA||-105/+105||WPG +106/SEA +116|
|DAL@LAK||+127/-127||DAL +150/LAK -122|
|MIN@SJS||-126/+126||MIN -121/SJS +148|
|DEC. 10||PIT@WSH||+113/-113||PIT +133/WSH -108|
|NYR@BUF||-133/+133||NYR -128/BUF +157|
|NSH@NJD||+128/-128||NSH +151/NJD -123|
|DET@COL||+230/-230||DET +280/COL -219|
|FLA@ARI||-160/+160||FLA -154/ARI +191|
|PHI@VGK||+167/-167||PHI +199/VGK -160|
|WPG@VAN||+127/-127||WPG +150/VAN -122|
|DEC. 11||TBL@OTT||-117/+117||TB -112/OTT +138|
|WSH@BUF||-145/+145||WSH -139/BUF +172|
|MTL@STL||+109/-109||MTL +128/STL -105|
|CHI@TOR||+180/-180||CHI +215/TOR -172|
|ANA@PIT||+177/-177||ANA +211/PIT -169|
|NJD@NYI||+150/-150||NJD +177/NYI -144|
|PHI@ARI||-123/+123||PHI -118/ARI +145|
|CAR@EDM||+120/-120||CAR +142/EDM -116|
|CBJ@SEA||+142/-142||CBJ +169/SEA -137|
|BOS@CGY||+102/-102||BOS +113/CGY +109|
|MIN@LAK||-114/+114||MIN -110/LAK +134|
|DAL@SJS||-105/+105||DAL -101/SJS +124|
|DEC. 12||ANA@STL||+130/-130||ANA +154/STL -125|
|NSH@NYR||+129/-129||NSH +153/NYR -124|
|FLA@COL||+131/-131||FLA +155/COL -126|
|MIN@VGK||+110/-110||MIN +130/VGK -106|
|CAR@VAN||+126/-126||CAR +148/VAN -121|
This chart is a good reference to determine whether you're truly getting value betting on one side or the other. However, keep in mind that new injuries or lineup issues will naturally arise.
Matt Russell is a betting writer for theScore. If there's a bad beat to be had, Matt will find it. Find him on Twitter @mrussauthentic.