NO MATCHES TODAY
Watch Ice Hockey Live Online
The inimitable action of lightning fast breaks and rock hard body checks. Hockey is the sport that just goes a little further. In PLAYLIVESTREAM.COM follow the top matches from all over the world. Whether it is the American NHL, Russian KHL or other European leagues, here you are always guaranteed power play.
PlayLiveStream Ice Hockey
As graceful as it is rough, ice hockey is a sport that's loved by millions of North Americans as well as a growing number of Europeans. Played on giant ice rinks with two competing sides pushing a puck towards an opening goal, the game provides some of the biggest thrills and spills of any sport on the planet.
Thanks to the combination of tough players, sharp skating skills and the unpredictability of ice, the outcome of a specific play or a complete game is never certain. In fact, it's this uncertainty and plethora of goals in a game that has helped ice hockey become a hit with fans around the world over the last few decades.
The History of Ice Hockey
Throughout history a number of countries and cultures have used sticks and balls to satisfy their competitive desires. From hurling in Ireland, to shinty in Scotland and bandie in England, many places in Europe during the Middle Ages had their own versions of stick and ball showdowns.
While all of these undoubtedly had an influence on ice hockey, it was IJscolf, a game similar to colf (a stick and ball game), played on ice in the low lands of Europe that really laid down a marker for future versions of ice hockey. Using a curved stick and a leather ball, colf and IJscolf players were tasked with hitting a target within the fewest strokes.
As this game (and variants of it) spread across Scandinavia and the colder parts of Europe, it then began to pique the interest of other sporting countries such as England. Wanting a stick and ball game they could play on ice, English sportsmen took the influence of colf and applied it to bandie to create a new ice-based game.
Naturally, as these games became part of the fabric of culture in Europe and the UK in the 19th century, it then travelled across the Atlantic with the British soldiers who went over to Canada and the US. Wanting to maintain some of their connections with home, the soldiers and immigrants would use the icy conditions to play their stick and ball games with locals.
Nineteenth century paintings of shinney being played on ice in Nova Scotia soon spread and as traditionally European games fused with an early version of lacrosse native to Canada, the game of ice hockey was eventually born.
The Growth of Modern Ice Hockey
Various regions, including Windsor and Dartmouth, lay claim to the first formalised versions of ice hockey in early 1810. However, what is clear is that the first competitive games were played under English Hockey Association rules, before the Amateur Hockey Association of Canada (AHAC) formed in 1886.
The formation signalled a turning point in the sport and spawned a slew of teams across Canada. By 1892 the Governor General of Canada, Lord Stanley of Preston, sponsored a tournament designed to recognise the best team in the country. Later known as the Stanley Cup, this competition has been contested by teams ever since.
Indeed, after professionals entered the game in 1902 and the National Hockey Association (NHA - later the National Hockey League - NHL) in 1910, the Stanley Cup quickly became the championship trophy for all elite teams.
Major Ice Hockey Teams
Although ice hockey is played at all levels around the world, including junior, amateur and semi-pro, it's the professional teams that court the most attention. Split into "minor" and "major" teams, the professionals will often play in front of thousands of live and many millions more across TV and live online streams.
In a nutshell, minor professionals are those teams that play in a full-time league outside of the NHL in the US and Canada. Set-ups such as the American Hockey League, the Federal Hockey League and East Coast Hockey League, all provide proving grounds for aspiring players and a place for those not quite good enough for the NHL.
However, when it comes to entertainment and exposure, the NHL is the pinnacle of the ice hockey world and since it formed out of the NHA in 1917, a number of teams have risen to the top and established themselves as hotbeds for ice hockey talent.
Montreal Canadiens: Always a fixture in any top NHL team list, the ’77- ‘78 line-up is regarded as one of the Canadiens' finest and arguably the greatest offensive side ever. Scoring 359 goals and 11 players scoring 40 each helped the Canadiens beat the Bruins to lift the Stanley Cup.
Edmonton Oilers: Considered by many as the best NHL team of all time thanks to legendary alumni such as Wayne Gretzky, Paul Coffey, Mark Messier, the Oilers side of ’84 started a run that was almost unprecedented in NHL. Online beaten twice in 1990, the famous Oilers outfit will likely never be matched due to league salary caps.
Boston Bruins: Back in the late Sixties and early Seventies the Bruins were an unstoppable force. Thanks to Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito the team's 12-2 playoff record still stands as one of the best of all time and something of a turning point in the level of skill seen in the NHL within the modern era.
Major Ice Hockey Events
In order to create legendary players and legendary teams you need legendary competitions and in the ice hockey world there are many tent pole events for fans to hang their hats on every year. Indeed, when you log into the live streaming arena on any given day, you can now find a slew of skating action from around the world. Whether it's the NHL's regular season or one of the following cup competitions, ice hockey is a veritable hive of live online streaming activity.
The Ice Hockey World Cup: Brought in to replace the Canada Cup, the World Cup of Hockey was first played in 1996 and ran twice until 2004. However, following the 2016 World Cup, the tournament will be held on a regular quadrennial basis and form the marquee event for international ice hockey teams outside of the Olympics.
The Olympic Games: Despite the Hockey World Cup and the Stanley Cup being the biggest events within the ice hockey world, the Olympic Games is always a fantastic spectacle. Bringing the best national sides together every four years, Olympic ice hockey games always stir up a huge amount of interest for both live stream viewers and traditional TV spectators.
The Victoria Cup: A relatively new tournament in the professional ice hockey world, the Victoria Cup is organised by the International Ice Hockey Federation pits the best sides in the Champions Hockey League (Europe) and the NHL (US and Canada) against each other in a battle for international supremacy.
The NHL Challenge: Between 2000 and 2003 the NHL's finest travelled to Europe to take on the best teams in Sweden and Finland (also hotbeds of ice hockey talent). The resulting series of tournaments saw the Maple Leafs, the Canucks and Colorado Avalanche win all six games.
Betting on Ice Hockey
When it comes to betting on ice hockey, the key to victory is in-play betting. Because a game is divided into three periods of 20 minutes, there's a lot of scope for making bets in the heat of battle. For those who do intend to take on the bookies in a battle of in-game betting, the main skill you need to master is timing. Essentially the flow of in-play betting is a game of cat and mouse between the bettor and bookmaker.
As different events change the course of the game the bookies are forced to react, so if the punter can respond to these events first they can effectively steal a march on the bookmaker and benefit from favourable odds. For example, a tactical change by a coach might make a team more likely to score. Therefore, a bet on XX team to score next would be profitable.
If you're able to make this bet at odds previously set before the formation change, then you're likely to get a better price than post-change. However, to beat the bookmaker you can't simply rely on text updates. To really benefit from in-play betting you need to watch each game live. Fortunately, this is now possible thanks to live ice hockey streams online. Inside PlayLiveStream you'll find a plethora of ice hockey streams that can be beamed directly to your desktop or mobile device in stunning HD quality.
Ice Hockey Live Streams
Having this sort of access to ice hockey games from around the world means that you can now make more money betting on ice hockey if you so desire. Of course, if you're simply a fan of the game and want to watch the best NHL live streams or IIHF sanctioned games via your computer of phone, then that's perfectly fine.
However, thanks to an exclusive list of high quality betting operators listed on PlayLiveStream, you can literally power up an ice hockey stream, assess the action and place a bet all within the same window. Doing this not only makes everything more convenient but, importantly, more efficient which, in turn, means more money in your pocket.