The PL in hockey betting is what's known as the "puck line.'' A puck line is hockey's version of the spread, which means you are picking on how the favored team or the underdog team will do against the spread. The spread is the margin of goals that separate the two teams in the final score.
In the majority of NHL games the puck line is 1.5. If it appears next to a team in the line as -1.5, it means that team is favored and must win by two goals or more to produce a winning bet. If you see +1.5 next to a team's name, this team is the underdog. It can win the bet by either losing by one goal or winning the game.
The puck line, of course, is solely for hockey because it's the only sport with a puck. And the reason the line is so low is because most hockey games tend to be low-scoring affairs. This is particularly true for professional games, including those in the National Hockey League.
Although there are exceptions, nearly all puck lines will include the .5 after the whole number. The .5 is placed there so the bets won't end in a tie or what's known as a push. When the final score is the exact number of the puck line, there is no winner or loser and gamblers receive their money back.
While betting on a puck line can be very rewarding, it can also be frustrating. Few things are worse for a puck line bettor than losing a bet when one team scores a "garbage'' goal after the other team has pulled its goalie in a desperate attempt to catch up.
As with just about any kind of sports, puck line bettors are well served to do their homework. Although most puck lines are set at 1.5, you might find a spread more to your liking by comparing various sportsbooks. When determining which team you think will cover the bet, also consider factors such as injuries, how teams play on the road as opposed to when they are at home, and trades. Quite often one team may be in a position where it needs to win the game more than the other in order to improve its spot in the league standings or qualify for the playoffs at all.
Many gamblers like puck lines because they also can produce higher payouts. If you pick the favorite you are not only predicting who will win the game, but you will also be rewarded for getting the spread right. Taking the underdog has an advantage because it does not need to win the game. Rather, all it has to do is lose the game by one goal for it to be a winning bet. In the NHL games are decided by one goal between 30 to 50 percent of the times. This is another reason to consider taking the underdog to lose by no more than one goal.
Many NHL games often end up tied after regulation. Should this happen it is just fine with bettors who took the underdog on a 1.5 puck line because the game will be decided by no more than one goal. You can also make puck line bets in which the only thing that counts is where the game stands after the regulation 60 minutes.