NHL Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Wednesday, December 7th

December 7, 2022 09:59 AM

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NHL Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Wednesday, December 7th

Recap: Tuesday’s loss was a frustrating one. The first best bet was on a home underdog (Winnipeg Jets) that didn’t close all that strong. It won, rather easily, by a score of 5-2. The other bet was a -165 favorite (New York Islanders) that closed north of -180. It lost 7-4.

Wednesday’s Bets: There are currently no bets. Today’s game lines are tight. I will post a Tweet and update the article if anything changes but it doesn't look like that will happen at this point.

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: 37 Losses: 41 Units Won: -5.14 units ROI: -10.8 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.

Washington Capitals (-140) at Philadelphia Flyers (+120)

It doesn’t sound like Capitals’ goaltender Darcy Kuemper will play on Wednesday after he suffered an injury in Calgary on Saturday. Kuemper hasn’t been ruled out, but he missed Monday’s game in Edmonton and that means backup Charlie Lindgren is the projected starter for the time being. On Monday, Washington called up Hunter Shepard from the American Hockey League. The 27-year-old has never played an NHL game, but he was just named the AHL goaltender of the month after going 6-0 in November. Shepard’s numbers are very strong, but he’s only played 20 games in the minors over the last three seasons. It remains to be seen whether he will get a start at any point, but it’s something to be on the lookout for.

This is the final game of Washington’s road trip, and a rematch from a few weeks ago. The Capitals took that game in overtime by a score of 3-2, but they were on home ice and had a big edge in goal with Carter Hart on the Flyers’ bench and Kuemper in their crease. The Flyers won’t get much of an edge from being home ice but, assuming Carter Hart is in goal this time around, they will have an advantage in the goaltending department. The market likely isn’t sure what to make of the Kuemper and his status for the game, and if it is announced that he will miss the game, it could signal some action and bettors looking to take the home underdog will go to work. Of course, there is a small chance that Kuemper is healed up and ready to play and it’ll be a race to market if that’s the case.

Philadelphia is one of the worst teams in hockey (bottom-five on offense and defense) and the Capitals are starting to string together some solid performances. The team is still nowhere near as good as it will be when its back at full strength, but over their last ten games, Washington ranks fourth in expected goals in all situations. Let’s see how everything shakes out. I’m interested in betting on the road team. I just don’t think there’s any need to bet -140 right now. It doesn’t look like that number is going to go anywhere, and if it does move, there’s a good chance it’ll be in the Flyers’ direction. Let’s see how it all shakes out. I took a chance on Washington on Monday knowing that the Capitals haven’t been outscoring teams on average, but that was at +135. I’m approaching this game with a lot more caution.

Note: Carter Hart will start for the Flyers.

Update: Charlie Lindgren is confirmed as Washington's starting goaltender, but although the odds have moved toward the Flyers, they haven't moved quite enough. There's still time, but it doesn't look like I'll be able to justify betting on Washington unless there's a late push toward the home team.

Boston Bruins (-170) at Colorado Avalanche (+150)

If the Avalanche had kept quiet about Nathan MacKinnon’s injury, there might have been an opportunity to get a good price on Boston this morning. However, when the news broke on Tuesday, many sportsbooks took the game off the board and didn’t list it again until recently. Now, Boston is priced how they should be, which is pretty telling. Colorado was outplayed badly in Boston on Saturday, and the team is going to have to dig deep in order to hang with the Bruins on Wednesday. The Avalanche’s star power has been significantly reduced, with only Cale Makar, Mikko Rantanen and Devon Toews left to carry the load. My NHL betting model suggests that Boston will win the game around 63 percent of the time assuming Linus Ullmark starts in goal.

Avalanche inuries: Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog, Val Nichushkin, Bowen Byram, Josh Manson, Evan Rodrigues, Arturri Lehkonen, Darren Helm

Buffalo Sabres (-165) at Columbus Blue Jackets (+145)

Blue Jackets’ goaltender Elvis Merzlikins returned to action on Tuesday and allowed four goals on 34 shots in a 4-1 loss to the Penguins on home ice. Now, the team welcomes the Buffalo Sabres to town for a game on Wednesday. Buffalo is the superior team, and they deserve to be a sizeable favorite, but in terms of shooting and saving, there’s not a whole lot separating the two teams. Buffalo is a top-10 offensive team, but the Sabres were the worst defensive team in the league (4.22 goals against per 60 minutes) over the last month. The Blue Jackets have scored two or fewer goals in six out of their last eight games, but with Patrick Laine back in the mix, the team is more dangerous on the attack. No team allows more shots per 60 minutes, though, and that’s a big reason why my model prices this game around -150 in favor of the road team.

Note: Joonas Korpisalo will start in goal for Columbus.

Update: Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen will start in goal for the Sabres.

Minnesota Wild (+130) at Calgary Flames (-150)

Backup goaltender Dan Vladar has started the last two games for Calgary, and three out of the last four. Jacob Markstrom last started a week ago. A lot of blame has been put on the latter, after losing his last two starts and not playing well in general, but I’m not impressed with the Flames’ efforts. Calgary has scored roughly 50 percent of the goals over the last month, and while the team has outplayed their opponents (Calgary ranked fourth in shot attempt percentage), their expected goal share (52 percent) is closer to average than elite. The Flames aren’t making good use of their possession like they did in 2021-22, and it shows. Markstrom hasn’t been good, but Calgary ranks 22nd on offense and that’s a bigger problem than goaltending.

Minnesota has improved a lot over the last month, and in a lot of ways, they grade out better than the Flames. The Wild have had two days off after winning their fourth game in a row and they have won six of their last seven games. My model doesn’t see value on the Wild. I just wanted to point out some of my concerns about Calgary and mention that I don’t think they’re a good bet at the current odds. The Wild have had two days off, and they’ve been producing goals at a higher rate than they have been all season.

Notes: Marc-Andre Fleury will start for the Wild.

Update: Dan Vladar, not Jacob Markstrom, is expected to start in goal for Calgary.

Other news and notes:

Vegas: Logan Thompson will start in goal for the Golden Knights, who will be without Jack Eichel and Alex Pietrangelo once again.

New York: Igor Shesterkin is expected to start in goal.

Boston: Linus Ullmark will start in goal for the Bruins.

Colorado: Alex Georgiev will start in goal for the Avalanche.

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