Top 5 Betting Tips for the IIHF Hockey World Championship
The Hockey World Championship is the premier international hockey tournament. Held every year in the spring, this multi-week competition pits 16 of the top hockey nations in the world against each other to see who will be crowned the champion and if you want to bet on the IIHF Hockey World Champions from Canada, you're in the right place!
If you're wondering how to bet on the championships we recommend you to check out our guide on how to bet on the hockey world championships. If you already know how hockey betting works, check out these 5 betting tips for the IIHF hockey world championship and tilt those odds in your favour!
Tip 1 Understand the Format
A good place to start is to understand the format of the IIHF Hockey World Championships. The main group in the tournament features the top 16 teams in the world. They are split into two different groups of eight teams each. This is based on their ranking in the world, which is determined by their performance in the last four Hockey World Championships as well as the last Winter Olympic games.
In the preliminary round, each nation plays every other nation in their group, for a total of seven games each. The top four teams in the standings after these round-robin games are played advance to the knockout stage. This is a single-elimination tournament from here on out. Win and you advance; lose and you go home.
Understanding the format of the tournament is particularly important when you're betting on preliminary round games. You should know where the teams are in the standings, and whether they have a chance to move up into the quarterfinals round, or whether they're already eliminated.
Knowing what's at stake for each nation in each game can help you understand each team's motivation. And that motivation typically plays a large part in how the teams play on the ice, which affects your bets.
Tip 2 Check Who's Playing
One of the interesting nuggets about the Hockey World Championships is they take place at the same time as the NHL Playoffs do every year. As such, players whose teams are still in the NHL Playoffs will not be eligible to play in the Hockey World Championships.
This is very important to note, as the players available to each nation will obviously go a long way in determining how they nation fares at the Hockey World Championships.
For example, in this year's tournament, Team Canada was without two of its best players in Nathan MacKinnon and McDavid because their NHL teams (the Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers, respectively) were still in the NHL Playoffs. Ultimately, Team Canada ended up losing to Team Finland in the Hockey World Championship gold medal game, but that outcome could have been different if those two were eligible to play.
Keep in mind, too, that NHL players are able to join the Hockey World Championship after it's already begun once their NHL team is eliminated from the playoffs. This isn't common, but it does happen every once in a while. Such a move could change the trajectory for a nation, and change your outlook on bets, too.
Tip 3 Check Past Experience
Past experience playing on the international stage is important to note among Hockey World Championship betting tips. That's because the international game is slightly different than the NHL game. The international rink is larger than the NHL rink, which affects how the game is played. There is fewer checking and physical play, and teams rely much more on speed, finesse and puck-handling skill.
So, when you're analysing potential Hockey World Championship bets, consider whether the players involved have a lot of experience playing in this type of rink. It doesn't mean that nations that don't have a lot of experience won't do well, but it could give other nations a slight advantage.
Tip 4 Check the Odds
The odds play a huge role in whether a bet will be a good one or not. It's not just about picking the winners of a game outright. It's about finding the games that have good odds that can result in high payouts or that don’t force you to risk a lot of money to win just a little. You may think that Team Canada is assured of winning a particular game in the Hockey World Championship, for example, but if their odds are too long, it may not be worth a bet.
For example, if they are a heavy favorite over a nation such as Italy, their moneyline odds could be -450. That would mean you would need to bet $450 just to win $100.
Long odds like this don't automatically mean that a bet on Team Canada in such a circumstance wouldn’t be worth it. What it does emphasize, though, is that it's important to analyze the odds when you're considering various bets on the Hockey World Championship. You can't simply pick winners without understanding what you'd need to risk and what you could potentially win.
Tip 5 Take Advantage of Promotions
A final Hockey World Championship betting tip is to take advantage of as many promotions as possible offered through the sportsbook where you play. Sportsbooks will often offer special promotions on events such as the Hockey World Championship to get players to bet on it. This could be a reload bonus that would serve as a match bonus when you add more money to your sportsbook account. Another example could be an odds boost on anything from a futures bet on the winning nation of the Hockey World Championship or a same-game parlay.
In the latter example, the sportsbook would "boost" the payout odds of the same-game parlay for particular games in the Hockey World Championship. So, if you place a three-leg same-game parlay on the finals of the tournament, instead of having potential payout odds of +250, for instance, the sportsbook may offer payout odds of +325. On a $100 bet, that's a difference of $75, which isn't chump change. The great part about this type of promotion is that it rewards you without you having to risk any extra money.
So, if you're looking to get the most out of your betting experience follow this and the other Hockey World Championship betting tips listed above.