NHL Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Friday, December 2nd

December 2, 2022 08:29 AM
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Ilya Sorokin has the best save percentage (.935) in the National Hockey League.

Welcome to VSiN’s NHL Bets page. Your source for comprehensive and dynamic hockey betting analysis. Read on for odds, predictions and best bets for December 2nd. Follow me on Twitter to stay up to date.

NHL Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Friday, December 2nd

Recap: Thursday’s best bet on the Kraken had some market resistance and things went south quickly as the Capitals jumped out to an early 2-0 lead. Seattle battled back, tied the game late in the third period and won in overtime, though.

Friday: There are just three games scheduled for Friday.

Friday’s Bets: There are currently no bets.

I’m tracking all my plays on Betstamp: a third party bet tracking app. The bets reveal themselves after the games start. I keep my own personal records as well and they may differ slightly from Betstamp due to several factors, but for the most part, it should line up closely.

Wins: 35 Losses: 38 Units Won: -3.64 units ROI: -7.7 percent

All game lines via DraftKings Sportsbook and BetMGM Sportsbook, but I will sometimes use the consensus odds from the VSiN NHL Odds page if it is a better price and widely available. All recommended bets will be accompanied by recommended stake size. All stats via Evolving Hockey and Natural Stat Trick.

Ottawa Senators (+155) at New York Rangers (-175)

Ottawa couldn’t get past the Rangers at home earlier this week, losing 3-1 in a game in which New York started their backup, Jaroslav Halak. This time around, the Senators might have to face off against starter Igor Shesterkin, but since the Rangers are scheduled to play host to the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday, it's unclear if that will be the case.

According to my NHL betting model, the Rangers’ odds will reach heights greater than the current price of -175 if Shesterkin is announced as the starter. If Halak gets the start, however, their chance of winning the game will be a lot lower. The home team shouldn’t be priced any lower than -150, though, so it doesn’t look like I’m going to end up betting the Senators either way.

This is also the first of two games in two days for the Senators, who will back to Ottawa to host the San Jose Sharks, so that means the team could start either Cam Talbot (.918 save percentage) or Anton Forsberg (.904 save percentage) in goal. The Senators are 3-7 straight up on the road, which is the fifth-worst road record in the NHL.

Nashville Predators (+135) at New York Islanders (-155)

The game between Nashville and New Jersey was a lot of fun. The Predators took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission, but the Devils stormed back, scoring three unanswered goals early in the second period. Nashville would tie the game late, though, and win in overtime despite being a big underdog. The Predators played their strongest hand on Thursday, though, when they started Juuse Saros in goal, and that means backup Kevin Lankinen will almost certainly start on Friday.

Lankinen has been good for Nashville this season, posting a .922 save percentage, but he’s only played six games and his career numbers are much lower. He’s only a couple of years removed from a pretty good rookie season, though, so maybe the Predators have something in the 27-year-old. Still, this is a tough spot for the road team, and will be made even more difficult if the Islanders decide to start goaltender Ilya Sorokin.

Sorokin has posted a .935 save percentage in 17 games played and, according to my NHL betting model, New York should be priced around -168, if he is in goal. The team does have three straight games against Western Conference opponents, though, and there’s a chance that backup Semyon Varlamov will get one of the next three starts, and if it happens to be Friday’s game, the Islanders wouldn’t be a good bet at the current odds.

Columbus Blue Jackets (+200) at Winnipeg Jets (-240)

Another game where goaltending really matters. Winnipeg is one of the hottest teams in the league, having lost just four of their last 16 games. The Jets’ underlying metrics are strong, but it would be foolish to suggest that Connor Hellebuyck isn’t the main reason for the team’s success. The Jets will likely defeat the Blue Jackets, but let’s rule out the possibility of backup David Rittich starting the game in place of Hellebuyck. I think Hellebuyck is the most likely starter, but I won’t feel comfortable placing a bet on the Jets unless they confirm who will be in the crease.

Former Jets’ sniper, Patrick Laine, is expected to return to the Blue Jackets’ lineup after missing the last seven games. Starting goaltender Elvis Merzlikins is also expected to be back after missing the last six games with a hip injury. The Jets will likely win the game either way, as Columbus is one of the worst defensive teams in the league, and their offense is average at best. There’s also a chance that Merzlikins will play backup to Joonas Korpisalo. I’m going to wait and see how it all plays out.

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