Jets at Predators Game 1 NHL Odds & Betting Preview

Posted by Jordan Walters on Friday,April 27, 2018 8:14, EDT in

The NHL playoff format is messed up. Want proof? We are only in the conference semifinals, yet the team with the most points this season, the Nashville Predators, has to face the club with the second-most, the Winnipeg Jets, in Game 1 on Friday in the West. The Predators remain MyBookie NHL odds favorites to win the Stanley Cup.

How to Bet Jets at Predators NHL Odds & Game 1 Info

When: Friday, 8 PM ET
Where: Bridgestone Arena, Nashville
TV: NBC Sports Network
Radio: 1290 AM(Winnipeg) / 102.5 FM (Nashville)
Opening NHL Odds: Predators -148, Jets +134 (5.5)

Season Series

The Predators won the regular-season series 3-1-1, outscoring the Jets 22-20. They last met on March 25 in Winnipeg and the Jets won 5-4 in a shootout. Mark Scheifele scored the only goal in a shootout and the Jets clinched a playoff spot at the time. Jets rookie Kyle Connor scored a power-play goal and had two assists. Dustin Byfuglien also scored on the power play, and Bryan Little and Blake Wheeler each added a goal and an assist for Winnipeg.  Kyle Turris, Ryan Ellis, and Viktor Arvidsson each had a goal and an assist, and Roman Josi also scored for the Predators. Nashville backup Juuse Saros stopped 43 shots. Connor Hellebuyck made 32 saves for the Jets.

Why Bet on Winnipeg?

The Jets are in the postseason for the first time since 2014-15 and just the second time since their move from Atlanta before the 2011-12 season. They knocked out Minnesota in five games with a 5-0 win last Friday. Jacob Trouba, Bryan Little, Brandon Tanev and Joel Armia scored in the first 11:59 to chase Minnesota goalie Devan Dubynk.  Connor Hellebuyck made 30 saves for his second shutout of the series, and Mark Scheifele added a goal in the third.  Hellebuyck stole the show in the first round with a .924 save percentage and 1.93 goals-against average.

Winnipeg’s previous post-season appearance was a sweep by Anaheim in 2015. The franchise moved from Atlanta in 2011. The Thrashers started in 1999-2000, with their only playoff series ending in four straight losses to the New York Rangers in 2007. The series came 31 years after the original Jets last won a series before the team moved to Arizona.

Defenseman Toby Enstrom (ankle) appears as though he will be good to go for Game 1 against Nashville. Enstrom participated in a full practice on Wednesday alongside regular defense partner, Dustin Byfuglien. Enstrom hasn’t played since March 23.

“He looks good,” coach Paul Maurice said. “One of Toby’s great strengths is his ability to touch the puck first in heavy traffic and move it well. He gets to it early and he can make that inside play, that short pass under pressure, which is their forecheck game. So we’ve missed him in those games.” If Enstrom is back then Joe Morrow or Ben Chiarot will be scratched.

Superstar Patrik Laine has missed some practice this week. But Maurice maintained that Laine will play in Game 1. “He’ll be fine. He’s in the same boat as everybody else, but I have an expectation that he’ll be there.”

Laine scored 20 goals and 31 points on the power play during the regular season and forward Bryan Little said he is not worried if the Jets are without Laine on the unit. Little would take his place if Laine is out.

“It looks a bit different,” Little said. “He’s one of the best goal-scorers in the league. But we have guys that can step in there. [Forward Mark Scheifele] has got a great shot himself. We’ve got guys that can step in pretty seamlessly there. I’ll be ready either way.”

Why Bet on Nashville?

Are the Predators a safe NHL betting pick in Game 1?

The Predators advanced with a Game 6 5-0 win in Colorado on Sunday. Austin Watson netted his fourth goal of the playoffs on Sunday. Watson led the Predators with four goals and seven points in six games in the opening round of the postseason. Linemate Colton Sissons, who had two helpers in Game 6, also had seven points in the series. Filip Forsberg tallied his fourth goal of the postseason in the rout. Forsberg generated six points in the six-game series. He collected four assists in five games against the Jets during the regular season.

Pekka Rinne made 22 saves. Rinne turned in his best performance of the series and posted his fourth career postseason shutout. He improved to 4-2 in the playoffs with a 2.60 goals-against average and .909 save percentage.

It’s unclear if Ryan Hartman will be back in the lineup for Game 1 against Winnipeg. Hartman was scratched for Game 6 versus Colorado. He skated on the fourth line at Wednesday’s practice, but Calle Jarnkrok and Austin Watson didn’t take part in the session. He still could play instead of Scott Hartnell or Miikka Salomaki. Hartman’s debut with the Predators on Feb. 27 came against the Jets and he had a great performance with a team-high eight shot attempts at even strength and scored the game-winning goal.

The Predators may have had some defensive lapses against the Avalanche in the first round, but they still boast the most talented top six in the league.  The Predators also know they’ll need each of their forward lines to be at its best if they are to defeat the Jets. In the first round, the Predators averaged 3.67 goals per game without much offense from their second line of Kyle Turris, Kevin Fiala and Craig Smith. Smith scored two goals against the Avalanche, one on the power play and one after coming out of the penalty box. Fiala scored a power-play goal and had an assist, and Turris had one assist.

Latest NHL Odds Trends

  • Winnipeg is 5-10 ATS in the last 15 games
  • Winnipeg is 9-1 SU in the last 10 games
  • The total went UNDER in 6 of Winnipeg’s last 7 games
  • Nashville is 1-4 ATS in the last 5 games
  • Nashville is 6-2 SU in the last 8 games
  • The total went OVER in 5 of Nashville’s last 6 games at home

Expert NHL Betting Prediction

I honestly think the home team wins every game in this series barring major injury. Take Nashville.