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Odds and Ends

NHL Unders are on fire since restart

by Sam Panayotovich
Updated On: August 17, 2020, 9:56 pm ET

How low can you go?

That's the question lots of hockey bettors are asking after another Sunday full of Unders. Even with three totals closing at 5, four of the five games yesterday went Under the posted total. 

And while it's strange to see more 5s than 6s, bookmakers know what they're doing. 

"We're making the adjustments," Rampart Casino race and sports director Duane Colucci told NBC Sports. "When you have that many games that are under, we're quick to make a move."

Move as they may, offense is still down across the board and betting on goalies and defense has been extremely profitable. Unders are hitting at an amazing 44-and-26 (63%) clip since the restart. If you bet 100 dollars on every single over, you're down over $2,000. Hat tip to Rotoworld's Edge Finder.

"It's definitely the hot goalies," Colucci explained. "Even a guy like Carey Price is completely rejuvenated. There are also no crowds, so the energy in the building isn't a factor. Goalies are able to focus more than ever. That's got a lot to do with it. Defenses are playing really solid. And the delay definitely hurt some of these players. Even the superstars are struggling because there wasn't much practice time. Conditioning isn't the same. Cohesion is certainly a concern. I don't think a lot of these lines were clicking right out of the gate." 

Monday's betting boards directly reflect this fiery trend. Two totals are sitting at 5 with another at 5.5 u-140. Odds are good that the 5.5 will move its way down to 5. It's almost inevitable. 

But will we ever see a total of 4.5?

"I don't think so," Colucci said after a short pause. "I'll keep them at 5 and juice the Under. I don't want to make a move to 4.5, that's too difficult. As a bookmaker, I don't want to go that route. As these teams start to get more reps, you'll see more goals."

Sam Panayotovich

Sam Panayotovich is a sports betting analyst from the South Side of Chicago. He'll probably pick against your favorite team a lot. Follow him @spshoot