Scoring is up in hockey. On average, NHL teams have found the back of the net 2.97 times per game. That is the highest scoring rate since the 2005-06 season (3.08 goals).
Rules changes implemented at the beginning of the season are one explanation for the increased scoring. Of note, the league put an emphasis on stick penalties (slashing), which leads to an increased number of power play opportunities. This season teams are averaging 3.32 power plays per game, the highest mark since 2012-13.
More scoring opportunities equals more goals, that’s simple enough. If you’re thinking more goals equals more overs, you’re also right.
Overs are 254-243-17 (51.1%), +11.77 units. This has been the best year for over bettors in our database. In the last 13 years, unders had been profitable every season.
Don’t go throwing the Christmas money your Gam-Gam sent you in the mail on every hockey over tonight though. The good times have already passed.
In the first month of the season, overs were 102-71-6 (59.0%), +30.79 units. Since then, overs are 152-172-11 (46.9%), -19.01 units.
Damn you, Vegas! Oddsmakers have a job to do and they are good at it. When the public finds a profitable angle, bookmakers work to eliminate said advantage.
2017 could finish as the most profitable year in our database for NHL overs but the odds are you won’t profit from the increased scoring going forward.