NHL Betting Guide: Wednesday 4/5/23

You know you're down in the dumps as an NHL club when you use your best goaltender just to lose to Chicago in regulation. That was Calgary yesterday.

How does that impact betting today's slate?

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.

Calgary Flames at Winnipeg Jets

Jets -1.5 (+184)

Hockey is a sport of randomness, but the Calgary Flames have their backs against the wall today.

Jacob Markstrom's poor year has hindered Calgary as one of the preseason Western Conference favorites. He's complied -5.30 goals saved above expectation (GSAx), which is 86th of 101 goalies to take the ice this season. It's been a stunning turn since he contended for last year's Vezina.

Now, on this back-to-back set in Winnipeg, Calgary is forced to either turn to an unrested Markstrom or Dan Vladar (-5.25 GSAx). Neither are in the same stratosphere as Connor Hellebuyck, who sits fifth overall in GSAx (27.27) himself.

These clubs are both top 10 in expected-goals-for rate (xGF%) since March 1st, so they're fairly even as skaters. The canyon in the crease is likely why 57% of the money is backing the Jets' puckline despite receiving just 32% of total puckline tickets.

Edmonton Oilers at Anaheim Ducks

Over 7.5 (+134)

This is really a bet on Anaheim's potential offensive competence in this game.

As hard as I was on Calgary's tandem, Edmonton's Jack Campbell has been that much worse. He's projected to face the Ducks in a soft spot to rest Stuart Skinner, but even the softest of spots haven't been a sure thing. Campbell's -19.82 GSAx are 97th of the 101 goalies mentioned earlier. He's been absolutely dreadful.

Campbell did blank the Ducks on Saturday, but he had ceded at least four goals in each of his prior seven games. Since March 1st, Anaheim's 2.40 expected goals scored (xGF) per 60 minutes are the third-worst mark in the league, but they've had functional nights at the office, posting at least three goals seven times in that span.

There's zero debate about whether or not the Oilers get it going tonight; it's just for how long. The Ducks have ceded the third-most expected goals per 60 in that span (3.63), and John Gibson (-2.00 GSAx) is limping to the finish line.

I'm personally tired of losing pucklines on empty nets, but it does only help the case for this over that numberFire's model and sharp bettors are behind the Ducks' puckline. If this one stays remotely tight, it should breeze past eight goals.