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NHL Predictions & Betting tips

Betting tips 1X2

22 Apr 2024 - 21:00

NHL

Edmonton Oilers Edmonton Oilers
Los Angeles Kings Los Angeles Kings
1 X 2
Probability of 55%
23 Apr 2024 - 18:00

NHL

New York Rangers New York Rangers
Washington Capitals Washington Capitals
1 X 2
Probability of 65%
23 Apr 2024 - 18:30

NHL

Florida Panthers Florida Panthers
Tampa Bay Lightning Tampa Bay Lightning
1 X 2
Probability of 53%
23 Apr 2024 - 20:30

NHL

Winnipeg Jets Winnipeg Jets
Colorado Avalanche Colorado Avalanche
1 X 2
Probability of 57%
23 Apr 2024 - 21:00

NHL

Vancouver Canucks Vancouver Canucks
Nashville Predators Nashville Predators
1 X 2
Probability of 55%
24 Apr 2024 - 18:00

NHL

Toronto Maple Leafs Toronto Maple Leafs
Boston Bruins Boston Bruins
1 X 2
Probability of 56%
25 Apr 2024 - 18:00

NHL

Tampa Bay Lightning Tampa Bay Lightning
Florida Panthers Florida Panthers
1 X 2
Probability of 55%
25 Apr 2024 - 18:30

NHL

New York Islanders New York Islanders
Carolina Hurricanes Carolina Hurricanes
1 X 2
Probability of 48%
26 Apr 2024 - 18:00

NHL

Washington Capitals Washington Capitals
New York Rangers New York Rangers
1 X 2
Probability of 55%
26 Apr 2024 - 18:30

NHL

Nashville Predators Nashville Predators
Vancouver Canucks Vancouver Canucks
1 X 2
Probability of 53%

1 / 2

The 2023/24 NHL season is right around the corner and we have an in-depth look at the betting odds and which team will lift the Stanley Cup. We’ll also take a look at some profitable betting strategies that will be sure to help your overall win rate when placing your own bets.

NHL Prensentation and Predictions - Hockey

NHL predictions

While not pulling the viewership of other sports such as the NFL and NBA, the National Hockey League (NHL) has a dedicated and passionate following which ranks it at about the fifth most popular sport in the United States, as well as the number one sport in many other countries. The fast-paced nature of the sport of hockey makes it ideal for bettors looking for an adrenaline fueled betting experience that is sure to get the heart rate going. The league is composed of 32 teams (25 in the USA and seven in Canada) which are separated into the Eastern and Western conferences. In those two conferences the teams are then separated again into two divisions.

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2023 NHL Prediction: Who Will Win the 2023/24 Stanley Cup?

The NHL's Stanley Cup

Led by the reigning and three-time MVP Connor McDavid, the Edmonton Oilers have one of the best teams in the NHL. McDavid is joined by Leon Draisaitl, a top-four MVP candidate in his own right, who together form arguably the best duo currently playing. The Oilers finished last year with the second-best record in the Pacific division and the third-best record in the entire Western Conference at 50 wins, 23 losses and nine overtime defeats. They would overcome the Kings in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, but ultimately lose in six to eventual champions Las Vegas in the second round.

However, there are plenty of reasons to be excited about Edmonton’s chances this time out. They are consistently improving as a squad and McDavid somehow continues to get even better despite already being the best player in the league. The Oilers were the top scoring regular season team in the NHL last year by a wide margin. They netted 3.96 goals per game with the next highest team coming in at 3.66. They’ll now have a goalie with a full season under his belt in Stuart Skinner along with increased cohesion between defenders Darnell Nurse and Mattias Ekholm. If they can keep up the same kind of offensive output while improving their defense, Edmonton could be the team to beat in 2023/24.

2023 NHL Prediction: Odds on the favorites for the Stanley Cup

  • Toronto Maple Leafs - 9.00
  • Colorado Avalanche - 9.50
  • Edmonton Oilers - 10.00
  • New Jersey Devils - 11.00
  • Carolina Hurricanes - 11.00
  • Vegas Golden Knights - 12.00
  • New York Rangers - 14.00
  • Boston Bruins - 16.00
  • Tampa Bay Lightning - 16.00
  • Dallas Stars - 18.00
  • LA Kings - 18.00
  • Florida Panthers - 19.00
  • Pittsburgh Penguins - 29.00
  • Minnesota Wild - 31.00
  • Calgary Flames - 31.00
  • Buffalo Sabres - 34.00

Odds provided by bet365.

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What Prediction For the Hart Memorial Trophy (MVP Award) in the NHL?

Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers

It’s hard to bet against Connor McDavid given the outrageous numbers the 26-year-old put up last year. McDavid was the first player to crack the 150 points mark since Mario Lemieux in the 1995/96 season. For that reason, the oddsmakers have the Edmonton Oilers star listed as the current favorite at even money. McDavid has a shot to be only the second player to capture back-to-back Hart Memorial Trophies in the last 25 years. The fact is that Connor McDavid is the best player in the NHL and finds himself in rare company, putting up the kinds of numbers not seen since Gretsky and Lemieux. Even with the short odds for this kind of bet, we’re backing the Oilers captain to win his fourth MVP award.

NHL MVP odds:

  • Connor McDavid - 2.00
  • Nathan MacKinnon - 11.00
  • Auston Matthews - 11.00
  • Leon Draisaitl - 13.00
  • Matthew Tkachuk - 13.00
  • David Pastrnak - 13.00
  • Kirill Kaprizov - 17.00
  • Jack Hughes - 19.00
  • Nikita Kucherov - 21.00
  • Cale Makar - 23.00
  • Tage Thompson - 29.00
  • Jason Robertson - 34.00
  • Mikko Rantanen - 41.00
  • Jack Eichel - 51.00
  • Elias Pettersson - 51.00

Odds provided by bet365.

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What Prediction For the Vezina Trophy (Best Goalie) in the NHL?

Jake Oettinger of the Dallas Stars

Jake Oettinger presents some excellent value at this current price. At 24-years-old, the Dallas Stars shot stopper will be entering his fourth season and he has shown consistent improvement every year. His save percentage has gone from .911 as a rookie to .914 in his second year and finally .919 last season. If he continues as expected and is able to crack the .920 mark, he’ll likely find himself among the top five at the position.

Dallas made it to the Western Conference Finals last season, coming up just short to eventual champions Las Vegas. They finished with a 47-21-14 record and look set for another strong season in 2023/24. Being on a top team will certainly boost the chances of any prospective Vezina award winner. Not only that, Dallas are a top defensive team and finished last year with the third fewest goals conceded at 218. Having a great defense will boost his shutout numbers (he finished with five last season, just one behind league leading Sorokin) which might just give him that extra boost in the voting.

NHL Vezina Trophy odds:

  • Ilya Sorokin - 7.00
  • Juuse Saros - 7.00
  • Igor Shesterkin 7.00
  • Connor Hellebuyck - 7.00
  • Jake Oettinger - 14.00
  • Andrei Vasilevsky - 16.00
  • Linus Ullmark - 21.00
  • Filip Gustavsson - 21.00

Odds provided by bet365.

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Beginner’s Guide to How the NHL Works

The NHL regular season sees each team playing 82 games from the months of October to April which leads to the Stanley Cup playoffs beginning in May. The NHL season is similar to the NBA season in both length and typical downtime teams are afforded in between games. Most teams play every 2-3 days although there are times throughout the year that teams will have to play on back-to-back nights. 

Upon the completion of the regular season, 16 teams take part in the playoffs (eight from each conference) to decide which two teams will compete for the Stanley Cup, the NHL’s championship game. The top three teams from each division win automatic entry into the playoffs and will be seeded according to their regular season record, which makes up the initial 12 teams. The next four available playoff spots go to the two highest placed finishers in each conference, regardless of division. This means that five teams from the one division could technically qualify while only three teams from another division get in.The structure of the playoffs follows many other American sports with each round being a best of seven series to determine the winner, meaning that the first team to win four games will advance.

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How to Make Good Predictions on NHL Games?

How to make NHL predictions

Below we've come up with five strategies and pieces of advice that should help to increase your chances of a successful bet and improve your overall betting process.

  • Assess the starting goalie matchup
  • Be cautious with puckline favorites
  • Analyze detailed statistics 
  • Situational spots and team news
  • Compare odds across bookmakers

Below we’ll take a look at each in more detail:

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1. Assess the starting goalie matchup

Ilya Sorokin makes the save vs Vegas

Hockey is similar to baseball where the starting pitcher matchup is a decisive factor in determining the winner of a given match. In hockey, it’s the starting goalie matchup that you’ll have to pay special attention to. In a league where most teams average over 30 shots per game, the difference between having a top goalie vs an average goalie between the pipes will become apparent. Therefore, it’s important as a bettor to pay attention to who the teams are playing in the position. Not unlike many other sports, goalies are often rotated and the backup will see significant playing time throughout a season. If a team goes from an elite goaltender to a league average performer, the betting line will be influenced.

When assessing goalies, save percentage is probably the most important stat you’ll come across. The average for the league tends to be around .910 with anything below .900 considered to be poor by NHL standards. Conversely, a goalie with a save percentage above .920 is considered to be excellent. It’s not uncommon to see a team’s results follow congruently with their goalie’s performances, either improving or dipping along with the goalies form. This is especially true for teams or defenses that are heavily reliant on their goalie, such as an elite goaltender on a somewhat average team.

2. Be cautious with puckline favorites

Like most other sports, bookmakers provide bettors with point spreads for NHL games, which is referred to as the ‘puckline.’ While this provides punters with better odds to back a heavy favorite, it’s important to understand the pitfalls that sometimes accompany this type of bet. As an example: the Philadelphia Flyers finished last season as one of the worst teams in the NHL with a record of 31 wins, 38 losses and 13 overtime losses. Naturally, they will have entered the majority of their games as the underdogs and thus receiving +1.5 on the puckline spread. What’s interesting to note is that the Flyers finished the season with the second-best against the spread record at 48-34 for a cover rate of 58.5%.

On the other side of the coin, the Carolina Hurricanes were the defending champions last year and one of the best teams in the league. They finished atop the Metropolitan division with 52 wins, 29 losses and nine overtime defeats.  However, the Hurricanes would also finish the 2022/23 season with the second-worst against the spread record at 40-57 (41.2%), for reasons similar to that of Philadelphia. The strength of their team meant they Carolina would have been favorites in a large majority of their games, thus laying -1.5 on the spread. What’s important to remember about hockey and the NHL in particular is that the majority of the games finish with a one goal difference between the two teams. Keep this in mind when placing your bets.

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3. Analyze detailed statistics

We mentioned goalie performance above and assessing them based on their save percentage. Other excellent advanced statistics you can use are: goals saved above expectation and goals saved above average. These will help paint a better picture to the quality of the goalie that is playing and can be especially useful for those games that see the backup taking over. 

Another good stat to keep in mind is expected goals for (xGF) and expected goals against (xGA). If you are a passionate football punter then this stat will be a familiar one. Expected goals is a way to judge the quality of each individual shot taken using a numerical value. For example, a shot taken right in front of the goalie in a 1-on-1 situation is going to have a much higher expected goals value than a slapshot taken from near the blueline. Using expected goals is a great way to measure an offense’s chance creation ability without being over reliant on simply their goals scored. 

These are just a few examples of how to search for statistics that are “under the hood” so to speak. These types of metrics provide a greater insight into how teams and players perform and  should be essential tools in a sports bettor’s arsenal. 

4. Situational spots and team news

The Bruins set the points record in 2022/23

The NHL season sees teams play 82 regular season games followed by three rounds of best-of-seven playoff series before the Stanley Cup finals. It’s a jam packed schedule that spans the course of six months. With so many games to be played in a relatively short amount of time, it’s common that situations arise with teams playing on short rest. In the previous season, every team aside from the Golden Knights and the Kraken had 10 or more back-to-backs scheduled. This means that teams would somewhat regularly play on consecutive nights, which often has an effect on player and team performance.

You’ll want to be aware of these kinds of spots when analyzing an NHL game. Is a team playing the second of a back-to-back while their opponent comes into the game on three day’s rest and not having hit the road in a week? That’s the kind of situational factor that you have to account for. In a similar vein, you’ll want to keep up to date with the latest team news to stay on top of any potential injury announcements. Following a team's social media accounts is a great way to do this, as is regularly checking injury reports. The Avalanche are going to look much different on the ice if they are without the services of Nathan MacKinnon, for example. This is going to be reflected in the betting line.

5. Compare odds across bookmakers

Last but certainly not least, you will want to make it a priority to compare the odds at different bookmakers. We can’t stress enough just how important this is; this one factor can often make the difference between some sports bettors ending up profitable or in the red! You should make it a habit to constantly look for the best available odds for the bet you are looking to make.  Consistently locking in the best possible price will provide an instant improvement to your ROI!

The best method to achieve this in the most efficient way is to sign-up with as many betting sites as you can. Having accounts across a multitude of different sportsbooks ensures you will have the access to the largest pool of available betting lines and thus ultimately find the best odds. That’s not the only benefit as you will also be able to take advantage of bookmaker’s welcome bonuses, many of which can see you receive a 100% matched first time deposit bonus! To see the best welcome bonuses on the internet, visit our best betting sites page.

Check out the latest odds at Vbet!

What Not to Do For Your NHL Predictions

To give yourself the best chance at improving your bottom line when it comes to betting on the National Hockey League, there are a few pitfalls you will want to avoid. Here are some examples of what you should be cautious of:

  • Not taking into account the goalie matchup.
  • Overvaluing -1.5 puckline spreads and, in turn, undervaluing +1.5 spreads.
  • Chasing your losses (ex. Betting triple your normal amount to ‘make up for’ two previous losses).
  • Not practicing proper bankroll management (you should have a fixed bet amount within your overall betting funds). 
  • Not comparing bookmakers to find the best possible odds on the market for your bet.
  • Betting strictly on a team’s name and reputation and not accounting for recent performance and form.
  • Only looking at final scores of previous games and not digging deeper into the underlying statistics.
  • Disregarding the betting odds and not understanding the implied probability behind them.
  • Blindly betting on your favorite team.

More than a few beginner and experienced bettors have fallen victim to one or multiple of the above habits. If you can eliminate them from your betting process and approach each game with clear, rational analysis, you’ll greatly increase your chances of turning a profit!

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NHL Prediction: Statistics You Need to Know

Check out these interesting NHL statistics

We’ve compiled some key statistics from the previous season to keep in mind when making your predictions for the upcoming NHL season. All of the following statistics are taken from the current recently completed 2022/23 season unless stated otherwise:

  • The average goals scored per team across the 32 NHL clubs was 3.18 last season.
  • There was an average of 6.36 goals scored per game in the 2022/23 NHL season.
  • This was an increase from 6.28 average goals scored per game in the 2021/22 campaign.
  • Last year saw the highest power play percentage since the 1985/86 season at 21.27%.
  • Power play opportunities also saw a seven-year high in 2022/23 at an average of 6.14 per game.
  • The Seattle Kraken finished last season with the best against the spread puckline record at 57-39 (59.4% - regular season and playoffs).
  • The Calgary Flames had the worst against the spread puckline record last year at 31-51 (37.8%).
  • Last season saw an average of 1.60 goals scored in the first period, 2.00 goals scored in the second period and 2.00 goals scored in the third period.
  • Last season saw teams scoring on average 28% in the first period, 34% in the second period and 34% in the third period.
  • The Boston Bruins set the all-time points record by a single team in the 2022/23 season at 135.

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In Short: How to Make the Right NHL Predictions?

Auston Matthews of the Maple Leafs

When making your NHL predictions, be sure to follow the tips and strategies laid out in this article. Remember to always account for a team’s schedule, the starting goalie matchup and the underlying statistics in regards to offense, defense, and goaltending. Of course, you should also do your best to follow the news for each team that you are interested in betting on.

If you find yourself short on time and don’t think you’ll be able to fully commit to analyzing an NHL game, or you simply would like to hear the advice of our tipsters, head over to our predictions page where you can find the latest betting tips by our experts!

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Our current NHL predictions

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NHL: best odds

23 Apr 2024 - 18:00 New York Rangers - Washington Capitals
1 1.69
2 33
23 Apr 2024 - 18:30 Florida Panthers - Tampa Bay Lightning
1 2.01
2 3.3
23 Apr 2024 - 20:30 Winnipeg Jets - Colorado Avalanche
1 2.52
2 2.51
23 Apr 2024 - 21:00 Vancouver Canucks - Nashville Predators
1 2.12
2 3.15
24 Apr 2024 - 18:00 Toronto Maple Leafs - Boston Bruins
1 2.5
2 29
24 Apr 2024 - 20:30 Dallas Stars - Vegas Golden Knights
1 2.2
2 2.9
25 Apr 2024 - 18:00 Tampa Bay Lightning - Florida Panthers
1 3.31
2 1.98
25 Apr 2024 - 18:30 New York Islanders - Carolina Hurricanes
1 3.25
2 37
26 Apr 2024 - 18:00 Washington Capitals - New York Rangers
1 4.7
2 1.65
26 Apr 2024 - 18:30 Nashville Predators - Vancouver Canucks
1 3.16
2 2.05
26 Apr 2024 - 21:00 Colorado Avalanche - Winnipeg Jets
1 5.9
2 1.55
26 Apr 2024 - 21:30 Los Angeles Kings - Edmonton Oilers
1 15
2 1.17
27 Apr 2024 - 21:30 Vegas Golden Knights - Dallas Stars
1 1.13
2 26

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