Tonight's NHL slate offers us seven games to choose from, and I have picked three matchups that I feel hold the best value for NHL bettors. Check out my NHL predictions for these games, as we try to maxamize out our NHL betting payouts.

Lets check out some of tonight's biggest games and cover the NHL picks I find to have the best chance of in cashing for us as the sportsbooks.

San Jose Sharks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

NHL Odds: Sharks -120 

San Jose SharksWe’re coming to a point in the season where reality has set in. It might be hard to fathom for some people who can’t let go – us included – but it’s time to face the music. What we’re referring to in this case is that the Tampa Bay Lightning are simply not that good. 

It’s easy to look back to last season and remember just how good Tampa Bay was but the truth is that they aren’t the same team. Heading into Thursday’s action, they’re just one point better than the worst team in the conference and their -34 goal differential is actually the worst in the East (and second worst in the NHL). 

The Lightning have just two wins in their last seven and they’re not even a reliable home bet either. They’ve lost three of their last four at the St. Pete’s Time Forum. 

The Sharks will have a huge edge in goaltending in this contest as the Lightning’s tandem of Mathieu Garon and Dwayne Roloson is arguably the worst in the league. Sharks netminder Antti Niemi is reliable and had the night off in the Sharks latest contest, so he should be fresh. 

The Sharks have won seven of the last eight meetings and outscored Tampa Bay 31-13 in that span. Take them on Thursday. 

NHL Picks: Sharks

Winnipeg Jets vs. Minnesota Wild

NHL Odds: Over/Under 5 

Both the Winnipeg Jets and Wild have been having trouble scoring recently, so a meeting of the two minds should lead to an under. The Wild have scored just 126 goals this season, which is second-fewest in the NHL while the Jets are at 140, which is third-fewest in the East. 

The Wild have scored just seven times in their last five games. In Tuesday’s 2-1 home loss to the Anaheim Ducks, they only mustered 18 shots. As for the Jets, they’ve lost six of 10 and scoring has been an issue for them all season long – particularly on the road. The Jets average just 2.16 goals per game on the road, which ranks them 24th

Ondrej Pavelec has played well in this series, giving up just two goals in the last two meetings. As for the Wild, one of the team’s strengths is in net. Look for this game to go under the number

NHL Picks: Under

Phoenix Coyotes vs. Los Angeles Kings

NHL Odds: Kings -120 

The Kings are worth a shot at home as a small sports betting favorite as they have owned the Phoenix Coyotes this season. They are 3-0-1 against the Coyotes even though goaltender Mike Smith has played well in the series (1.64 GAA). 

Los Angeles has been producing a little bit more offense at home these days, which is a good sign. They are the lowest scoring team in the NHL at 2.1 goals per game but they’ve now scored three or more in four of their last six at home.

Jonathan Quick has shut out the Coyotes twice this season while going 3-0-1 overall. Take the Kings on Thursday.

NHL Picks: Kings