NHL Betting Guide: Tuesday 2/7/23
In two spots, we got surprise news of backup goaltenders yesterday, but both of those sides still cashed. As for the spot with the one expected goalie? I think Andrei Vasilevskiy would rather not talk about it, either.
What stands out on the ice tonight?
Note: Lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. All ratings are out of five stars. All NHL betting odds and totals come from FanDuel Sportsbook.
Seattle Kraken at New York Islanders
Islanders ML (-110) - 2 Stars
You'll get déjà vu reading today's guide from yesterday.
I anticipated the Islanders would send Ilya Sorokin out yesterday against the Flyers on the road. They ended up turning to Semyon Varlamov, who got the job done in a 2-1 win. Now, Seattle has a particularly tough night at the office ahead of them.
Sorokin is the league's leader in goals saved above expectation (GSAx) at 33.56. That's over 6.5 goals better than his nearest competitor, and he'd be in line for the Vezina Trophy if Linus Ullmark wasn't going to get the nod on overall team accomplishment.
Needless to say, he's a gigantic advantage over Martin Jones (0.03 GSAx) despite the lack of rest for the Isles, and this one is a simple pick 'em.
Our model sees the Islanders -- behind Sorokin -- as 61.4% likely to win this one. Versus the 52.5% implied odds, we've got a value wager.
Vegas Golden Knights at Nashville Predators
Under 6.0 (-120) - 2 Stars
Two of Sorokin's closest contemporaries were in South Florida with him this weekend at the All-Star game.
Vegas' Logan Thompson represented Team Pacific, and Juuse Saros was one of Team Central's goaltenders from the Nashville Predators. Two All-Star-caliber goalies are a pretty solid starting point for the under.
Saros is indeed second behind Sorokin in GSAx (26.99) as we enter the second half. The advanced metrics haven't shined quite as well on Thompson (-2.41 GSAx), but for our purposes, the Golden Knights can still hold up their end of the bargain.
Vegas has allowed the third-fewest expected goals (xGA) per 60 minutes, which is why Thompson's 2.96 GAA is a modest 18th in the NHL. He's got a sturdy, reliable defense in front of him.
Our model is on board with a defensive struggle in Music City. It expects this under to cash 56.3% of the time and push another 10.3% of the time. The translation there is that -- if you can find it -- our model would also recommend a 5.5-goal under at plus money, which seems to be where this line is headed.