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NHL best bets
NHL best bets

Tuesday brings a six-game schedule in the National Hockey League, including three games that opened as a pick ‘em – so it looks like we're in for a night of competitive hockey. Read on for my best bets based on the latest NHL odds.

While there are several games on a competitive slate with teams that have playoff hopes, the Colorado Avalanche-Pittsburgh Penguins matchup features two teams that are clinging to playoff spots.

For these teams on the playoff bubble, every game matters that much more.

The Avs are one point behind the Calgary Flames for the second Wild Card spot in the Western Conference but have played four fewer games.

The Penguins, meanwhile, are tied with the New York Islanders and one point ahead of the Buffalo Sabres for the second Wild Card spot. The Islanders have played four more games than the Penguins and the Sabres have played one more than Pittsburgh.

Here are our NHL Best Bets for Tuesday (odds via FanDuel Sportsbook, DraftKings Sportsbook, Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, and PointsBet; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

Tuesday’s NHL schedule and odds

(odds via DraftKings Sportsbook)

  • San Jose Sharks (+200) vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (-240)
  • Colorado Avalanche (-115) vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (-105)
  • Edmonton Oilers (-175) vs. Detroit Red Wings (+150)
  • Seattle Kraken (-115) vs. New York Islanders (-105)
  • Vegas Golden Knights (-110) vs. Nashville Predators (-110)
  • Anaheim Ducks (+100) vs. Chicago Blackhawks (-120)

Tuesday’s NHL best bets

  • Moneyline: Oilers ML vs. Red Wings (-170 via Caesars Sportsbook) ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Spread: Sharks +1.5 vs. Lightning (-120 via BetMGM) ⭐⭐⭐
  • Total: Ducks-Blackhawks Over 6 (-120 via DraftKings Sportsbook) ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Prop: Eeli Tolvanen Anytime Goal (+310 via Caesars Sportsbook) ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Tuesday's NHL top picks

Moneyline: Oilers ML (-170 via Caesars) vs. Red Wings ⭐⭐

For all of their inconsistency, the Edmonton Oilers have actually been a quality road team, posting a 15-7-1 record away from Rogers Place. That includes an outstanding 7-0-1 road run heading into the All-Star break.

Where Edmonton should really take advantage here is on the power play. The Oilers are scoring 12.57 goals per 60 minutes of five-on-four play and are the only team scoring more than 10 goals per 60 in those situations.

Contrast that with the Red Wings, who are allowing 9.60 goals against per 60 minutes of four-on-five play, the third-highest rate in the league. An all-time great power play against the 30th-ranked penalty killing unit should be a difference maker.

Detroit has earned one regulation win in the past eight games and has a mediocre 12-10-3 record at Little Caesars Arena.

Caesars has the best price on the board, at -170, while the rest of the top-rated sportsbooks settled at -175 and -176.

Spread: Sharks +1.5 (-120 via BetMGM) vs. Lightning ⭐⭐

After getting blown out 7-1 on Monday night in Florida, the Lightning will look to bounce back at home against San Jose.

The Lightning have been outstanding at home, posting a 20-5-1 record, but only 13 of those 26 games have been victories by a margin of more than one goal.

For all of the flaws you might expect from the team that sits 28th in league standings, the Sharks have covered a 1.5-goal spread in 17 of 27 road games.

San Jose’s penalty killing has been a strength and ranks sixth with just 5.79 goals allowed per 60 minutes of four-on-five action. That could help the Sharks keep this one close, even if they aren't likely to win.

Playing the second game of a back-to-back scenario, Tampa Bay is probably going to have backup goaltender Brian Elliott in net, which should help San Jose’s chances.

This is still a three-star play for me because the Lightning have been so good on home ice, and there's a risk that a one-goal game late in the third period could still get pushed over the puck line by an empty-net goal.

The puck line has relatively consistent pricing across the top-rated sportsbooks, with the Sharks +1.5 priced between -120 and -125. BetMGM is offering at -120, so that is the first choice for making this wager, but the others are not too far behind.

Check out our latest Norris Trophy odds!

Total: Ducks-Blackhawks Over 6 (-120 via DraftKings⭐⭐

A Ducks-Blackhawks matchup should be relatively close, with both teams having one eye on the Connor Bedard Sweepstakes. 

It's not as though either team will stop trying defensively, but that might not even matter.

The Blackhawks have a 3.77 goals against average at home, which ranks 29th. It gets even worse, though, because Petr Mrazek is the expected starter for Chicago and he has a .861 save percentage and 4.53 goals against average at the United Center.

Put that defensive record up against an Anaheim team that is playing the second game of a back-to-back and is already has a league-worst 4.07 goals against average on the road.

There is a mitigating factor, of course, in that both teams do not have high-end skill to take full advantage of the situation, but the collective abysmal defensive play will drive this result.

Most of our top-rated sportsbooks have the Over priced between -120 and -125, but PointsBet has shifted the total to 6.5, so get in on this Over before the others follow suit.

Check out our latest Stanley Cup odds!

Prop: Eeli Tolvanen Anytime Goal (+310 via Caesars) ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Since being claimed claimed on waivers by the Seattle Kraken, Tolvanen has tallied eight goals in 15 games, including four in eight road contests, and has scored in each of his past three games.

He faces an Islanders team with a strong defensive record, but they are playing their second game of a back-to-back after winning 2-1 in Philadelphia on Monday.

The Isles should have starter Ilya Sorokin in goal after going with Semyon Varlamov against the Flyers. As great as Sorokin has been this season, he has allowed three or more goals in six of 11 starts in 2023, a sign of vulnerability when compared with his dominant start to the season.

Nevertheless, Tolvanen is priced among the goal-scoring longshots and his play since arriving in Seattle suggests this could offer excellent value.

The price ranges from +270 at PointsBet up to +310 at Caesars. As is often the case, Caesars is offering the best price on the board for an anytime goal and that gap in price makes the wager much more appealing.

NHL Best Bet picks made 2/7/2023 at 12 p.m. ET.

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