Oh, Hellebuyck! Another 'Under' Likely in Wild-Jets Series

Dana Lane

Thursday, April 12, 2018 5:17 PM UTC

Thursday, Apr. 12, 2018 5:17 PM UTC

The "under" is 8-3 the game after Winnipeg allows two goals or less. That trend is likely to continue when Minnesota tries to even the series Friday night.

NHL Friday: Wild vs. JetsFree NHL Pick: 'Under' 5 .5Best Line Offered: Betmania

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It took a while, but when the offense finally showed up in Game 1 on Wednesday night, "under" bettors had to hang on as Winnipeg beat Minnesota 3-2 to open the first-round Western Conference series. Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk was pulled with two and a half minutes remaining but neither team could find the back of the net, allowing "under" bettors to exhale.

Game 2 is Friday night (7:30 ET) on USA Network.

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Zach Parise and Mikael Granlund down the ice... #WPGvsMIN Game Center → https://t.co/Hi7l0IR471 pic.twitter.com/HKP9EAn4Mw

— Minnesota Wild (@mnwild) April 12, 2018
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The opening number on the NHL odds board gives the Jets more credit than in Game 1, when Winnipeg closed as a -180 favorite. For Friday's game, oddsmakers are giving the Jets more of an edge. We can find lines as high as -200, but the consensus can be found around -198 at Betmania, SkyBook, and BetPhoenix. The opening number presented itself at -193 but obviously was bet up, an interesting move considering Game 1 was a one-goal game. In fact, the Wild led with approximately 15 minutes left and were tied at the 7:14 mark. Usually you get some "due" money, especially with such a big plus price, but bettors don’t buy the Wild. I think the reason we’re not seeing some Wild buy-back money is because people who watch the league closely know this isn’t the best Winnipeg can play.

Our bet doesn’t seem to be moving the meter much; I suppose that happens when game was so close to going either way. The opening number shows the expected 5.5, shaded to the "under." Not much movement from there. You can find a better number in either direction, but this is the kind of wager you’ll want to wait on to see if the number goes in our favor. I anticipate the public jumping on the "over" considering how the game progressed, giving us some value.

I picked the Jets in this series because current form showed they were playing as well as anyone in the league. Over their last 13 game no team had more points that the Jets, managing to take 22 of a possible 26. They averaged 3.54 goals per game. Based on that, you would think I would be on the "over" but I’m convinced that Winnipeg will not only win this series but the Wild will have a tough time beating Connor Hellebuyck or simply getting quality chances. Minnesota was having trouble in transition as the Jets made the neutral zone a pit of hell that the Wild had trouble navigating. It turned into a chip-and-chase game that isn’t going to favor the Wild moving forward because they clearly don’t have the speed advantage.

With my NHL picks, I’m going "under" the total for Game 2 until I feel more confident in the Wild.

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