With the introduction of two-game sets in the 2020-2021 NHL schedule, the world of sports betting was excited. Teams often played two games against each other within three days. This wasn’t just a great opportunity for hockey fans to enjoy more games, but sports bettors were getting amped up as well. Platforms that allow betting online especially saw an increase in interest, as the additional accessibility appeals to many fans and bettors. But are bettors seeing new opportunities with the changes to the NHL season?
The Zig-Zag Theory
Sports betting isn’t just about rolling the dice and picking a team at random. Oftentimes, avid bettors will have strategies and systems that they use to dictate their bets. Bettors who use the Zig-Zag Theory will certainly be rejoicing at the news of the NHL season changes as it provides them many more opportunities to implement the strategy. So, what exactly is the Zig-Zag Theory?
The Zig-Zag theory is the basic idea that a team that just lost will most likely cover the spread on the next game. This theory is set to benefit the most from the two-game sets that the NHL season introduced, and will no doubt increase in popularity. The idea is that you bet on the loser of the first game, banking on a bounce back during the second. This is also a popular betting strategy to use during the NBA playoffs because of the back-to-back games played.
The theory can also get more advanced as you read deeper into it. Advanced users use home advantage, travel time, and momentum to factor into their bet choice as well. The full theory can get pretty complex when trying to understand all of the factors, but bettors essentially look for certain setups.
One setup is when the home team wins the first game. Statistics show that when a home team wins their first game, their chance of winning the series is roughly 65% in the NBA. It’s an even larger 76% in the NHL. In this case, the Zig-Zag Theory would show that betting on the losing team is a solid bet, even with the high percentages of them winning the series. If the home team ends up winning 2-0, the most common Zig-Zag Theory bet comes into play, betting on the underdog. The idea is that because Game 3 represents one of the last chances to keep the series winnable, the losing team will do everything in their power to win and keep the series competitive. There are a lot of other factors that bettors can take into account, but that showcases the basics of the theory. Unfortunately, just because it’s a popular betting system doesn’t mean it’s foolproof.
A Novel Concept for NHL and the Bettors
The new schedule that includes two-game sets between teams, where one team hosts two games, is essentially a mini playoff. While it was already practiced in minor leagues, it was a novel concept for the National Hockey League. Until now, playing against the same team twice in a row was rare, so two-game set certainly sets a new dynamic (pun intended). With the increased offerings for sports bettors, 2021 is seeing a massive increase in bets placed, meaning many novice bettors will start looking deeper into the strategies and also try to benefit from the new system.