NHL Best Bets

We’re officially calling this month “Feel Good February” after the 2-0 night last night. We have a ton of NHL action on this fine Thursday. There are a couple of must-watch matchups this evening between some legitimate contenders. It might be tough to find an NHL best bet for those games. 

Still, the Vancouver Canucks are in Boston for what should be an exciting one, and the Colorado Avalanche, who have lost two games in a row, are at Carolina, going up against a very strong Hurricanes team. Those are the two games that should be most exciting, but they’re not exactly the games I am looking at betting-wise. 


Winnipeg at Philadelphia (+120, 5.5)

The Winnipeg Jets have been on a bit of a skid, as they have gone 5-4-1 in their last 10 games and are currently on a four-game losing streak. The Jets were one of the best teams in the NHL prior to this skid, but the Philadelphia Flyers seem like a good team to help them get out of it. 

This is a payback game for the Jets. A little over a month ago, the Flyers went into Winnipeg and actually shut them out, winning  2-0. Now it’s the Jets’ turn to go into Philadelphia and seek revenge. 

The Flyers are coming off of a strong win at Florida, but this team has been struggling to score goals. They’ve scored a combined four goals in their last three games. Tonight, they play a Jets team that doesn’t allow much. Winnipeg has the best goals against per game in the NHL, as they’re only allowing 2.31 goals against per contest. 

The Jet’s offense has been struggling to score goals as well, but with the way the Flyers were playing before the break, this game seems like one where they can get back on track. 

On the flip side, Samuel Ersson is the confirmed starter for the Flyers, and his last five games haven’t been very pretty. Ersson is 1-4-0 while skating to a .846 save percentage and a 3.75 goals against average. 

Winnipeg hasn’t announced their starter yet, but I have more faith in Connor Hellebuyck and Laurent Brossoit than I do in Ersson. Hellebuyck currently boasts a .923 save percentage and a 2.22 goals against average, while Brossoit is skating to a .926 save percentage and a 2.07 goals against average. 

I think the Jets get back in the win column tonight. 

NHL Best Bet: Winnipeg Jets ML -142 (play to -160)

Calgary at New Jersey (-148 6.5)

The New Jersey Devils are a team that has to get going in the right direction post All-Star break and they started strong by defeating the Colorado Avalanche at home on Tuesday night by the score of 5-3. There is big news today as it has been reported that the Devils star forward, Jack Hughes, is expected to return to the lineup. This team is about one hundred times better when Hughes is on the ice. He’s arguably become a top-five player in the league, so this should boost the Devils. 

The Calgary Flames are coming off a big road win themselves as they went into Boston and defeated the Bruins thanks to their newly acquired forward Andrei Kuzmenko. That said, Calgary is about as average as average teams get. 

One thing that concerns me about Calgary is their offense. As a team, they’re averaging 3.06 goals per game, but with this most likely being a run-and-gun game, I’m not too positive that they’ll be keep up with the pace of the Devils with Hughes in their lineup. 

Neither team really has the edge in goal, so I am strictly looking at how both teams score. The Devils are a much bigger threat offensively, especially on the power play. New Jersey’s man-advantage has struggled as of late, but sticking with this theme, it will be a massive boost for them to get Hughes back out there. 

Calgary’s power play hasn’t been consistent this season, as they’re only converting at 14.7%. 

The Devils are 19-11-2 with Hughes this season and 6-9-1 without him. It’s clear that he is a massive difference maker and I expect that from him tonight. 

NHL Best Bet: New Jersey Devils to win in regulation -110 (play to -125)

February Record: 3-1 (+2.14 units)

2023-24 record: 83–94 (-32.64 units)