A bettor should always consider goalies when handicapping NHL games because goalies are often vital players that determine victory or defeat, unlike in most other sports.
An exceptional goalie can lead an underdog team to victory and turn a tight contest into a blowout, so bettors must pay attention to crucial goalie statistics. Below are the metrics bettors should keep an eye on.
1. Goals Saved Percentage
NHL betting has increased curiosity in advanced stats and analysis, which is excellent as the sport grows increasingly popular and fans become more interested in scrutinizing team and player statistics to make educated bets.
One of the key metrics when evaluating goaltenders is goals saved percentage – a rate statistic calculated per 60 minutes instead of as raw counts – so as a first step when judging goalies, it can help distinguish teams that rely heavily on shooting luck from those that exhibit exceptional goaltending skills.
2. Goals Saved Above Expected
GSAx uses expected goals as its basis and evaluates goaltenders based on the quality of shot attempts they face to provide a square measure for goaltending performance. It levels out playing conditions between those on solid teams and those who play on poor ones, providing a more fair evaluation.
Many bettors also utilize more advanced metrics to make informed wagers, including high-danger scoring chances, team Corsi, and goals saved above expected (GSAx). Goalies’ GSAx should be studied over the entire season and in recent games to get an accurate picture.
3. Save Percentage Against High-Danger Scoring Chances
Goalies can often be the key players in an ice game. And just like quarterbacks and starting pitchers, goalies aren’t immune from betting props that give bettors a chance to wager on specific goaltending situations during a game.
Sportsbooks will often set a total for how many saves a goalie will make during a game, allowing bettors to place wagers on whether they will record more or fewer than this number – an alternative to more advanced metric stats like goals against average (GSAAx) that account for shot quality.
4. Save Percentage Against Low-Danger Scoring Chances
The National Hockey League (NHL) is a low-scoring game where every goal can be crucial, often making the goaltender the deciding factor in any contest if their performance falters.
Goalies are typically evaluated based on their goals against average, which can be deceiving as it considers shot quality as part of its evaluation. More advanced metrics, however, can provide valuable opportunities by analyzing shot profiles. A high-danger chance moving average can show any spikes and valleys in scoring chances as part of its evaluation.
5. Save Percentage Against Shots Against
This statistic measures goaltender performance as the ratio between their save percentage and shots they have allowed (excluding empty net goals) over time. A good number indicates an above-average goaltender, while an unfavorable one means they performed below par.
This stat outshines GAA because it accounts for the strength of each goaltender’s opponents. Some goalies may face more imposing shooters or offenses than others due to coaching decisions or random fluctuations.
Advanced statistics may not be widely known in hockey circles, but they can still provide invaluable tools for handicappers. GSAx attempts to fill gaps left by conventional stats like SV% and GF%.
6. Save Percentage Against High-Danger Shots
Bettors approaching NHL betting typically begin their analysis with goalies, looking at who will start and their recent form.
As well as considering their overall save percentage, assessing their performance at even strength (5v5). This gives insight into the quality of shots they face and how effectively or poorly they’re playing.
Like all teams, goalies experience ups and downs during an 82-game regular season. A wise bettor will recognize this fact and avoid betting on goalies who have been struggling.
7. Save Percentage Against Low-Danger Shots
Hockey teams frequently experience ups and downs as they navigate an 82-game schedule. When betting totals on NHL games, it is wise to consider each goaltender’s recent form rather than looking at season-long stats alone.
Natural Stat Trick is an excellent tool to assess goalies’ save percentage against low-danger scoring chances, which provides a good measure of their performance against quality shots. This metric better reflects their performance than goals against average, providing equal treatment between goalies on poor defense teams and those on good ones.
In addition to these metrics, another aspect to consider when making NHL picks is the overall team performance. A strong goalie can certainly have a significant impact, but it’s also essential to analyze factors like team offense, defense, special teams, and recent trends. By taking a comprehensive approach and incorporating all relevant aspects, bettors can make more informed NHL picks and enhance their chances of success.