NHL daily best bets: Jets are ready for takeoff
Tonight we have 10 teams slated to begin their 2021-22 NHL campaign.
While some injury concerns have muddied up the betting board, there's still value to be found. Let's dive in.
Bet: Rangers (+110)
I think the Rangers are overvalued on the futures market but, oddly enough, there's value on them in their opener.
This is the kind of line I'd expect if both teams were at full strength. The Rangers are fully healthy while the Washington Capitals, well, aren't.
Nicklas Backstrom is starting the season on the sidelines, which leaves them a little thin down the middle against a team with a solid one-two-three punch. Alex Ovechkin's health is in question as well following an injury late in preseason. Even if he plays, which is looking more likely, he will surely be at less than full health.
The biggest edge for New York is probably in goal, though. Igor Shesterkin has been one of the league's best netminders since he debuted late in 2020.
Ovechkin or not, I like the Rangers as 'dogs in this spot.
Bet: Jets (-127)
The Anaheim Ducks were an unmitigated disaster last year. They were routinely dominated at five-on-five, ranking 27th in expected goals for share. Nobody scored fewer power-play goals (11 in 56 games) and only the lowly Buffalo Sabres won fewer games.
Despite posting horrendous results across the board, and returning almost the exact same roster, they appear to be getting too much credit to start this season.
While I'm generally not racing to bet a road favorite missing their No. 1 center (Mark Scheifele), this line feels a little out of place.
The Jets still have plenty of firepower with Nik Ehlers, Kyle Connor, Pierre-Luc Dubois, and Blake Wheeler leading the charge. Rookie Cole Perfetti could give their bottom-six forwards a nice shot in the arm. And their defense should be much more potent with newcomers Brenden Dillon and Nate Schmidt claiming top-four spots.
If all else fails, the Jets can rely on arguably the league's best goaltender. Connor Hellebuyck has saved more goals above expectation than anyone over the last two years; the gap has been nearly 20 goals! I like his odds of keeping the offensively challenged Ducks in check.
Todd Cordell is a sports betting writer at theScore. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @ToddCordell.
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