The UK has a reputation for both loving sports and taking a relaxed attitude to betting on them. Here are some of the top sports that Britons love to bet on.
Rugby is actually two sports in the UK as there are Union and League variations. While both use the peculiar egg-shaped ball (it’s better for carrying and throwing than the spherical variety preferred by football) there are some rule differences. In addition, rugby can range from being a low-scoring slog (especially in muddy conditions) to a high-scoring game with points scored within seconds of kick off. This means a points market in rugby can be more of a challenge than in some other sports.
On the League side (mostly popular in the north) the main competition is the Super League, with the annual domestic tournament coming in the form of the Challenge Cup. Note that the top of the Super League does not determine the winner, this is instead conferred on the winner of the play-offs which involve the top six teams at the end of the regular season. Unusually, the league is mostly English but does have French sides in Toulouse Olympique and Catalans Dragons.
Union is more internationally popular hence this being the format used in the more watched version of the World Cup and the Six Nations tournament (an annual event involving England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, France, and Italy). The top division of domestic rugby union is Premiership Rugby, and its clubs can also participate in the European Rugby Champions Cup and the European Rugby Challenge Cup.
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The leading light in the British sporting firmament is undoubtedly football (soccer to Americans), which is far and away the most popular sport in the country with fans from across the population. This enormous support has helped to make the EPL (English Premier League) the biggest national football league on the planet, with not only tens of millions of British fans but widespread support in countries and continents far away.
This interest also corresponds to betting behaviour, with bookies responding to it by creating literally hundreds of markets on every single Premier League match. This includes basic categories such as win/lose/draw and handicap markets through to a huge number of over/under goal markets, specials, and even the ability with many sportsbooks to request specific betting opportunities. In addition, title betting offers the chance to wager not only on who will claim the overall league victory but also who might be runner-up or finish in the top 4. In addition to the league, there’s the domestic FA Cup as well, and the Champions League always draws a betting crowd.
While most of the betting in the UK on football focuses on the EPL for obvious reasons, there is also significant wagering on the Championship, the second tier of English football. Another avenue of betting often travelled down is that of overseas top-flight leagues, with Italy’s Serie A, Spain’s La Liga, and the Bundesliga of Germany proving highly appealing. These other European leagues are well-liked due to a combination of top-quality action and minimal time zone differences that make viewing matches significantly easier than leagues further afield.
Cricket has a history dating back to Tudor England and remains one of the top sports in the UK to this day. A byword for gentlemanly behaviour, it’s worth noting the ladies’ games are increasingly watched too. While having a strong cultural affinity in England, cricket, like rugby, was also successfully exported to many of the Empire’s colonies and retains popularity among many former colonies to this day (most obviously India).
The leading domestic competition in the UK is the County Championship featuring eighteen county clubs (one from Wales, the rest English). The particular intricacy of cricket, which can have tests lasting days and multi-test series, makes it perfect for a wide range of detailed markets, from the number of wides and no balls to precise scoring predictions.
Formula 1 is unusual in that it’s a truly international sport but, at the same time, much of its heart is British. A majority of teams are clustered together in one corner of England, English is the primary language of the sport, and British success has made it the leading nation in terms of title victories (due in no small part to Lewis Hamilton, in addition to Jenson Button, Damon Hill, Jackie Stewart, and so on).
Modern Formula 1 is constantly changing its regulations to take account of scientific advancement and the political Zeitgeist, and that helps to act as a balance and prevent a team from enjoying success forever. That’s certainly been the case in 2022, which has seen Lewis Hamilton shift from title contender to also-ran and being left in the shade of his teammate. As part of the European core audience of the sport, most events are on at a convenient time for British viewers, who currently have three drivers (Lando Norris and George Russell, alongside Lewis Hamilton) to cheer on. It can also be especially good for fans of live betting, as red flags, crashes, safety cars, and unexpected rain showers can all play havoc with predictions and turn a race on its head.
Britons have invented most of the sports on this list, and contribute a lot to F1, so it’s no surprise these are the most popular sports for betting in the UK.
We are fast approaching the business end of the National Hockey League season as teams battle for position in the various conferences. The leading NHL betting apps offer odds on the season, allowing registered members to make predictions on the team they expect to finish as champions, as well as upcoming games. But which team is the current betting favourites, and how have they been performing this season? Understanding both the betting and the form could help bettors find the value. An over-priced team that has been overlooked just a little too easily by the traders.
In this article, we walk readers through the Stanley Cup outright betting odds, flagging up the favourites, how strong the odds are and which teams are ranked as the main dangers. Read on, and you’ll find information on the betting as well as how you can get involved, securing the best welcome bonus free bets. The aim of this page is to ensure readers have all the information they need to make a well-informed decision on the best way to bet on the NHL season and this year’s Stanley Cup.
Colorado dominate the Western Conference Central
The leading names in the betting industry don’t always agree on their favourite, but the top apps all pin Colorado Avalanche to the head of their list. What’s more, the odds offered are similar across the board, which suggests anything other than an Avalanche Stanley Cup win would be a shock result. Followers of the NHL are already more than 60 games into the campaign and have enjoyed more than their fair share of upsets, but the competitive nature of the year isn’t reflected in the betting.
That gives hockey fans and bettors a choice to make. Do side with the sportsbooks and go with Colorado, backing the team with the shortest odds on the list or do they aim high, taking on the bookies and playing an outsider with eye-catching odds attached. Perhaps the season stats and form of the favourites can help answer that question and guide bettors on the right path, ushering them towards a correct prediction and a profit while enjoying NHL.
Colorado sit in pole position in the Western Conference Central at the time of writing this article, and their stats suggest they will take some shifting. In their first 60 games of the campaign, they have won 39 and lost 17 games, scoring 233 goals and conceding 170. The 89 points amassed leaves the pace setters 13 clear of nearest rivals the St. Louis Blues, with Minnesota Wild in third on 72 points. It’s unlikely that Avalanche will be tracked down by those behind, and they are already well on their way to wrapping up the conference.
Avalanche have been much better when playing at home than when on their travels. They have won 19 and lost three so far, while their away results are 16 wins against ten defeats. This is a side with the players and mentality to live up to expectations this season.
If looking to take on the market with an underdog carrying attractive odds, readers may be interested to learn that the Florida Panthers rank as the highest-scoring team of all conferences at this stage. In their first 59 games, they have found the net 245 times and head the Eastern Conference Atlantic. Florida have won 38 games so far, with the 86 points collected, leaving them four points clear of Tampa Bay Lightning in second place.
That is reflected in the Stanley Cup betting with the Florida Panthers trading as the second favourites behind Colorado, with Tampa Bay Lightning in the third spot. The race to win the Eastern Atlantic could prove to be just as competitive as the battle to win the Stanley Cup.
The top bookies offer all new customers a welcome bonus free bet. All you have to do to get your share is create an account, make your first deposit using a debit card and place a bet on a qualifying sportsbook market, usually at odds of even money or higher. When that wager has been settled, the free bet due will be added.
With the 2021/22 NBA regular season now reaching its conclusion, fans are already placing their bets in play on which teams are favorited to make an appearance in the post season and who will be heading to the Finals for a chance to claim the Larry O’Brien championship.
The NBA Playoffs are now only a few short months away and the race to quest to claim an NBA championship ring is firmly up for grabs as a number of established franchises have made a firm case for being major contenders heading into the final stages of the regular season.
According to the current DraftKings NBA odds, these are the league’s favorites to win the Larry O’Brien championship this season.
- Phoenix Suns (+380):
After falling short to Giannis and the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2020/21 NBA Finals, the Phoenix Suns have picked exactly where they have left off and currently occupy the best regular season record in the NBA at this juncture.
With arguably the league’s best backcourt duo of veteran point guard Chris Paul and the superstar caliber two guard Devin Booker, as well as the towering 2018 first overall draft pick DeAndre Ayton at Center, the Suns are looking to remain a force heading into the postseason.
Backed by a tremendous coach in Monty Williams and a sublime supporting cast of great depth and quality, the Suns are sure to remain as the perennial favorites to win the championship this year, which of course would be the first in their franchise’s long history.
- Golden State Warriors (+450):
With the return of the fabled backcourt duo of Klay Thompson and former two-time MVP Stephen Curry, the Warriors have once again returned back to their old ways and are a major contender in the Western Conference even without their defensive stalwart Draymond Green who has been ruled out for the remainder of the season.
While Thompson is still recuperating from the major issue he suffered back in the 2019 NBA Finals, Curry’s on court dominance is arguably the most offensive polished that it has ever been throughout his hall-of-fame ladened career.
Adding to this has been the development of former first overall pick Andrew Wiggins who made his first All-Star selection this year and a great supporting cast of Gary Payton II, Jordan Poole, Juan Toscano-Anderson and rookie Jonathan Kuminga has left the Warriors with a firm chance of claiming a fourth championship in just eight years.
- Brooklyn Nets (+475):
In spite of the shocking trade for superstar shooting guard James Harden, the Nets still remain a major contender to make a first appearance at the NBA Finals since 2003, especially with the major return of Kevin Durant.
Durant’s injury and Kyrie Irving’s absence’s from home games this season has put a major damper on what was expected to be an exciting regular season for Nets fans, with the team struggling in recent months to uphold a spot in the automatic playoff seeds.
However, with return of Durant and likely Irving in the future as well as adding former All-Star and defensive player of the year candidate Ben Simmons to go along with an experienced supporting cast of LaMarcus Alderidge, Blake Griffin, Goran Dragic and Patty Mills, the Nets are almost guaranteed to make the playoffs should their core remain healthy and remain as firm contenders to lift their first title in franchise history.
- Milwaukee Bucks (+800):
Hot off the heels of their first championship winning season since 1971, the Bucks have continued to make a strong case of completing a first title ‘two-peat’ in franchise history thanks to the continuous excellence of the superstar Power Forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, who remains hotly in the race to win his third regular season MVP trophy in just four years.
Alongside All-Star forward Khris Middleton and Guard Jrue Holiday as well as a talented supporting cast of Pat Connaughton, Brook Lopez, Bobby Portis, Grayson Allen and the recent additions of defensive commodities Serge Ibaka and DeAndre Jordan has left the Bucks with a stern opportunity to claim another shot at winning the NBA championship this season.
Backed by the respected head coach Mike Budenholzer and an excellent front office, the Bucks will remain a major force throughout the East for years given the dedication and loyalty that Giannis has shown towards one of the league’s smallest market teams, which has paid off immensely.
- Honorable Mentions:
The emergence of the James Harden and Joel Embiid duo with the Philadelphia 76ers has risen them as firm favorites at +650.
With the additions of Kyle Lowry and P.J. Tucker to compliment the Jimmy Butler led Miami Heat, south beach could make a swift return back to the finals at +1000 odds as they currently occupy the best record in the East.
After earning the top seed in the West with a 60+ win season last year, the Jazz exited the playoffs in the second round at the hands of the feared LA Clippers, but are still major contenders thanks to the efforts of All-Stars Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert at +1700.