2018 Winter Olympics Betting Guide

The 2018 Winter Olympics begin this Friday on Feb. 9. It ends on Feb. 25. There are a number of betting propositions for the 2018 Winter Olympics. I’ve decided to list some of those propositions here. Check it out, and then enjoy one of the world’s great sporting events!

2018 Winter Olympics Betting Guide

The first four propositions I’ve listed are about how many medals each nation will win during the Winter Olympics. One medal proposition is about U.S. Gold Medals won. The other individual nation medal proposition is about Canada Gold Medals won. I got all odds from OddsShark.com. Check it out!

Most Gold Medals

Norway                                  +150

Germany                               +160

USA                                        +500

Canada                                  +700

Analysis:  Because Russian athletes aren’t battling for gold medals for the nation of Russia, it makes sense that both Norway and Germany would be at the top in total gold medals won. At the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi the Russians and Norwegians tied with 11 gold medals each.

Will Norway and Germany benefit the most from Russia’s inability to win gold medals for Russia? Probably not. USA and Canada both should. Of the two neighboring nations, Canada, by far, is the one that could benefit the most from Russia’s inability to win gold medals for Russia.

The Canadians won 10 gold medals at the 2014 Winter Olympics. What’s encouraging is that Canada also took home 10 silver medals. That’s 10 second place finishes. USA won 9 gold medals and 7 silver medals at Sochi in 2014. Canada looks like a solid play.

I think Canada, especially at 7 to 1, could win the most gold medals at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Pick:  Canada +700

Total Medal Count

Germany                                 +175

Norway                                   +175

USA                                         +400

Canada                                   +700

Unlike the Most Gold Medals proposition, the Total Medal Count proposition treats every medal won the same. Each gold medal, silver medal, and bronze medal counts as a single medal. That means a nation could win 20 bronze medals, only 5 golds, and only 3 silvers and possibly win this proposition.

It’s tough to take one of the dogs, USA or Canada, to win the Total Medal Count proposition. The reason I write that is because Germany and Norway should be competitive in most events. There’s a chance that either Germany or Norway takes home the most medals during the 2018 Winter Olympics even though they don’t take home the most golds.

Norway took home 26 total medals at the 2014 Winter Olympics. Some Winter Olympics fans expect the Norwegians to score a total of 40 medals at the 2018 Winter Olympics. That’s a lot of medals. I’m not sure any team comes close to that medal count.

I like Norway at +175.

Pick:  Norway +175

Total Number of USA Gold Medals

Over 10.5               -115

Under 10.5            -115

Analysis:  USA took home 9 gold medals at the Sochi Games. That’s not bad considering that USA doesn’t have the Winter Olympics training programs that nations like Norway and Germany have. With that being written, USA could win 11 gold medals at the 2018 Winter Olympics.

But, I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for that happen. The USA Women’s Hockey Team is being counted on to finally breakthrough against the Canadian Women’s Hockey Team. I don’t see that happening. I also believe that Lindsey Vonn and Mikaela Shiffrin pick up silver, or bronze, or nothing in downhill women’s skiing.

10 gold medals feels like a real possibility. 11 gold medals? Not sure that happens. The half a medal in this proposition should make the difference. I’m going under.

Pick:  Under 10.5

Total Number of Canada Gold Medals

Over                         8.5 -120

Under                      8.5 -110

Analysis: This might be the only real no-brainer proposition for the 2018 Winter Olympics. Canada should have no trouble securing at least 9 gold medals. That’s why the odds are over 8.5 -120. Sportsbook operators are hoping to entice under 8.5 wagers by hanging out the 10% vig on the under as opposed to the 20% vig on over.

Doubling the vig, the cost bettors pay to make wagers, can make any bettor take a double-look. I don’t believe there’s any way Canada doesn’t win at least 9 gold medals. Accepting double the vig on this proposition makes all the sense in the world.

Pick:  Over 8.5

Slalom Women – Winner

Mikaela Shiffrin (USA)                 -450

Wendy Hodener (SUI)                  +750

Petra Vlhova (SVK)                        +800

Frida Handsdotter (SWE)             +1000

Analysis:  Shiffrin is a huge favorite at -450. She should be. It’s difficult to see any of the other contenders beating Shiffrin at her own game. However, this is the Winter Olympics where information is scarce outside of Canadian and American athletes.

It only takes a single slip up from Shiffrin for Hodener, Vlhova, or Handsdotter to get the job done. If you don’t wager on the women’s slalom winner, and you’re a USA citizen, by all means, root for Shiffrin. If you do wager on this event, though, accepting -450 on any Olympic athlete not named Michael Phelps might not be the wisest thing to do.

Pick:  Hodener, Vlhova, or Handsdotter

Down Hill Women – Winner

Lindsey Vonn (USA)                        +300

Lara Gut (SUI)                                  +600

Tina Wierather (LIE                        +600

Cornelia Hutter (AUT)                    +650

Mikaela Shiffrin (USA)                   +750

Sofia Goggia (ITA)                           +800

Viktoria Rebensberg (GER)           +800

Anna Vieth (AUT)                            +1000

Michelle Guisin (SUI)                      +1200

Analysis: The Down Hill Women Olympic Event might be the most competitive during the entire Winter Olympics. Lindsey Vonn is a decent 3 to 1 favorite. By no means is she a lock. Vonn has had multiple injuries during her career. That doesn’t mean she won’t win. What it does mean is that bettors should keep Vonn’s injury history in mind before they haphazardly put money on her.

I’d look elsewhere. This might be the perfect time to pull the trigger on Mikaela Shiffrin. She’s offering much better odds at +750 than Lindsey Vonn’s offering at 3 to 1. Also, don’t sleep on Viktoria Rebensberg at 8 to 1. She could definitely win this.

Pick:  Mikaela Shiffrin

Ice Hockey – Men

Olympic Athletes of Russia        +225

Canada                                           +275

Sweden                                           +400

Finland                                           +800

Czech Republic                              +900

USA                                                  +900

Analysis:  The Olympic Athletes of Russia aren’t playing for Russia…yet, they’re still in the Olympics? Tells you where the Olympic Committee’s priorities are. In any case, Canada should win gold at Pyeonchang. The Canadian’s Olympic Team is made up of a few former NHL players.

My money won’t be on Canada, though. I’m looking at Finland and their 8 to 1 odds. The odds are tremendous on a team with many IHL players. IHL isn’t as strong of a league as NHL. No worries. NHL pro players are in the midst of a battle for the Stanley Cup.

Finland could pull off the sweet upset at 8 to 1.

Pick:  Finland

Ice Hockey – Women

USA                                            -120

Canada                                      Even

Finland                                      +1600

Olympic Athletes of Russia   +1800

Analysis:  This is my absolute favorite bet of the entire 2018 Winter Olympics. It’s rare to find a two-horse race in the Olympics. Often, the favorite is supposedly so much better than everyone else, like Mikaela Shiffrin in the Women’s Slalom, that you must settle on a long shot. But, for Women’s Hockey, there are two teams that appear evenly matched while the rest of the field is lacking in the talent needed to take home gold.

USA and Canada should finish one-two in Women’s Hockey. The two nations have a big time rivalry going. In the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, USA beat Canada in the finals. Since then, Canada has been en fuego on the ice. The Canadians have taken gold in every single Winter Olympics since Nagano. That includes beating the U.S. in Vancouver 3 to 2 in 2010, and beating the U.S. 4 to 3 in Sochi in 2014. Canada also beat the U.S. at the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics in 2002. USA didn’t make the finals at the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics.

Which way am I going? Am I looking to back Canada or USA? I always go with the higher priced favorite in a two-horse race. That’s just the way I play it. In this case, the higher-priced favorite is the Canadian squad. At even money, Canada is a great, fantastic, close to lock to back to win its fourth straight Olympic Gold Medal in Women’s Hockey.

What do you think?

Written by D.S. Williamson