How to bet on the Maple Leafs: Puck lines, game totals and player props
The Toronto Maple Leafs are an exciting NHL team to bet on. Photo by Chris O'Meara/AP.

You may be superstitious and not want to bet against your favourite team. Or perhaps you don’t want to bet on your favourite team because you’re worried about listening to your heart more than your head. 

Maybe you’re able to block that all out and are simply interested in finding value. Whatever it may be, there are a number of different ways to bet on the Toronto Maple Leafs. Many options don’t even require you to wager on the outcome of the actual game.

How to bet on the Maple Leafs

You will be presented with hundreds of betting markets any time the Maple Leafs play. What you ultimately decide to wager on will likely come down to a number of factors. That includes the opponent, location, trends, health of the roster and so on.

We’ll take a look at some of the common markets that are available each game and offer strategies on how to find the best value when betting on the Maple Leafs. 

Moneyline vs. puck line 

You have a couple of ways of betting on the Maple Leafs to beat their opponent. One way is to bet them to win straight up, which is known as the moneyline. You can add a handicap and take them to win by multiple goals (the puck line).

Picking between the moneyline and the puck line really comes down to value.

For starters, what’s the price? In other words, what odds are you getting the Leafs at and why is that important?

It's important because the Leafs would certainly be large favourites in certain matchups. Because of that, the price (odds) set on the moneyline wouldn’t yield a strong return on your investment.

For a game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Leafs would likely have an implied probability of winning around 75 percent. That would price them as a -300 favourite. Note: A favourite will always have a minus (-) sign before its odds, while the underdog will have a plus (+) designation.

You would also have the option to take the Leafs to win in regulation at say -180. If you elected to go that route, keep in mind that you would lose your ticket on an overtime win. This is known as a 3-way moneyline pick.

As for the puck line, which comes with a spread, the Leafs would need to win and do it by at least two goals. Your potential return would be much better, though. Here you would see Toronto listed at -1.5 (the handicap/spread) but since winning by two goals is more difficult than winning by one, the odds would change (let's say to -130). 

If you really sensed a blowout coming, you could also bet an alternative puck line and set the Leafs’ handicap at -2.5 (or greater). Now you would be able to get them at plus-money odds (+140). Your potential return would be greater here because the Leafs would have to win by at least three goals for you to cash your bet. 

Here’s a look at what your net profit would be based on the odds used in the above examples:

OddsImplied win probabilityWager amountTo win
-30075%$300$100
-18064.29%$180$100
-13056.52%$130$100
+14041.67%$100$140

Since any team can win on any given night, we would never suggest taking the Leafs on the moneyline at -300. When the odds are that high, the risk simply isn’t worth the reward. There are better plays than taking them at -180 to win in regulation, too. 

While the Leafs might be the superior team, beating any NHL team by three or more goals is a difficult feat, which is reflected in the alternate puck line odds. It is deemed the least likely outcome of the ones cited above, which is why it has the greatest payout. 

Each game is unique and will have its own set of circumstances, but the recommended choice here would be to take the Leafs -1.5 on the puck line. 

How to bet on Maple Leafs totals

We will stick with the Leafs and Blue Jackets example. The majority of games have a total (the amount of goals that will be scored) of 5.5 but can be set lower or higher.

The 6.5 number is typically the most common alternative. That means you can place a bet on whether the clubs will combine to go over or under that number. The over/under, or O/U, are just different ways to refer to the total.

This is a straightforward bet and the odds on either play (the over or the under) are more closely aligned than certain moneyline odds for a matchup, which can have large discrepancies.

You can also bet on a team’s total. Team totals are set lower, at say 2.5 or 3.5. 

Why would you want to wager on the team total over the game total?

In that Leafs and Blue Jackets matchup, perhaps you aren't confident that the Canucks can generate much offence but don't feel Toronto will have trouble scoring. That may make you more comfortable predicting the Leafs’ team total instead.

How to bet on Maple Leafs props

Props are another way to bet on the contest and involve wagering on certain games or individual outcomes. For instance, you could bet the over/under on how many shots the two teams will combine for, or the O/U on total power-play goals, or even predict the highest-scoring period. 

There are also player props, which is what we will focus on here. 

Common player props include betting on the number of goals, assists, points, power-play points and shots on net a player will accumulate in a particular game. 

You may find it to be a good opportunity to jump on Maple Leafs player props when, for example, they are playing a poor defensive team that allows a lot of shots on net and has its backup goalie in net.

This might be a good time to wager on Auston Matthews to score a goal. As a player who fires the puck on net a lot, you may also want to take the over on his shots on goal prop (this is usually set around 4.5/5.5). 

Photo by Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press.

Betting on a player to score (known as an anytime goalscorer) can be valuable but the odds change from game to game. For an elite goalscorer like Matthews, there are certainly more opportune times to bet on that prop than others.

You might see the odds for him to score at -125 but other times you can get it at +120.

For a bettor, getting Matthews at plus money offers greater value. Goals are hard to predict, so it's important to keep an eye on the odds to maximize your return on investment. Odds matter for any bet you are contemplating wagering on.

Sticking with Matthews, betting the over on his shot total is a lot more appealing when the odds are +120 instead of -140. Context matters, too, such as the opponent's recent trends or the goalie the team is facing.

Parlays and more

Parlays require you to be right about multiple outcomes in order to win your bet. You bet on two or more events (known as legs) on a single ticket and place one wager. If you don’t get everything correct on the parlay, you lose.

You can create all sorts of parlays, including picking the Leafs and other NHL teams to win. You can also find pre-built parlays at NorthStar Bets and assemble your own same-game parlay.

Let’s once again go back to the Leafs and Blue Jackets example. Perhaps you’ve decided that the Leafs will win, the two teams will combine for more than 5.5 goals, and Matthews will score. You could make separate wagers on all three of those outcomes, but you may also have the option to select all three as a single wager through a special offered or by building your own SGP.

Here’s an example of what that could look like:

Leafs to win, over 5.5 total goals, Matthews to score (+350). 

If you bet those separately, the odds would look something like this: 

Leafs to win (-300)
Over 5.5 goals (-110)
Matthews to score (-105)

Why are the odds so different? Unlike a single-event wager, that SGP would require all three outcomes to be correct in order to win.

Needing two-plus outcomes to all be right in order to cash your ticket decreases your chances of winning. But it also increases your payout potential, which is why they can be attractive to bettors.

There are more ways to get in on the Maple Leafs action through live betting and the futures market. Futures betting is where you can pick the Leafs to win the Cup or for Matthews to win the Hart.

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