NHL Betting Picks and Player Props to Target: Saturday 4/13/24

Austin Swaim
Austin SwaimASwaim3
NHL Betting Picks and Player Props to Target: Saturday 4/13/24

Saturday usually means a busy night on the ice, and we've got 26 teams in action at some point today. With no shortage of options to choose from, there are some pretty tasty wagers sitting at FanDuel Sportsbook's proverbial kiosks.

Whether it's moneylines, total goals, or player props, there are plenty of ways to bet on the NHL action all season long. It's a long 82-game season, meaning that the best selections of each night can be very different based on backup goalies coming into play, injuries that add up, and if teams are due for positive or negative swings.

My favorite picks are on the way, but don't forget to check out FanDuel's Parlay Hub to see other trending bets in all sports -- including ice hockey.

Let's dive into the best bets for tonight.

Note: Lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. All NHL betting odds and totals come from FanDuel Sportsbook.

NHL Best Bets

Seattle Kraken at Dallas Stars

Under 5.5 (+104)

This matchup features two of the best seven defenses in terms of limiting expected goals (xG) per 60 minutes, so it's no surprise that it has the lowest median total at most sources today.

The Seattle Kraken have lived under their projected total -- usually 5.5 -- all season, falling short of oddsmakers' mark in 44 of their 78 games (56.4%). For whatever reason, the Dallas Stars have joined them in their building, amassing a 66.7% rate of unders at American Airlines Center.

Seattle's dreadful offense is also scoring the sixth-fewest xG per 60 minutes (2.85) and hold the league's 11th-worst conversion rate on power plays (11.1%). They should be our saving grace here.

Massey Ratings expects this game to fall short of six goals 51.2% of the time, and this game has the lowest median total at DRatings (5.87). My personal model (in beta) also expects just 5.92 median goals here -- the lowest of the day.

Winnipeg Jets at Colorado Avalanche

Under 6.5 (-120)

Though the Colorado Avalanche have topped seven total goals in five of their last six home games, today's opponent brings a significant change in tempo.

In a game both clubs need, the Winnipeg Jets score just the 16th-most xG per 60 minutes, and they allow the 12th-fewest. Also, projected Vezina Trophy winner Connor Hellebuyck leads the NHL in goals saved above expectation (38.01 GSAx) despite playing behind a plus defense. They're a defense-first club that usually has a 5.5-goal total.

The Avs also have a 51.9% rate of hitting unders this season despite this recent burst of scoring, and goaltender Alexandar Georgiev (4.83 GSAx) has been a net positive. This isn't a supreme scoring environment.

Results across the board are more convincing to take this under than the last. numberFire expects it to cash 60.0% of the time, and Massey (55.0%) is equally convinced. DRatings also has just 6.12 expected median goals here. Side with less scoring than expected.

Detroit Red Wings at Toronto Maple Leafs

Maple Leafs Team Total Over 3.5 Goals (-120)
William Nylander 4+ Shots on Goal (-113)
William Nylander Anytime Goal (+135)

In a tremendous matchup, I'm simultaneously betting a Toronto Maple Leafs onslaught as well as a William Nylander bounce-back effort today.

Toronto's at home to face the Detroit Red Wings in a game that Detroit desperately needs, but the Wings' worst traits might keep them from getting it. They've allowed the seventh-most xG per 60 minutes (3.23), and goaltender Alex Lyon (2.80 GSAx) hasn't put a huge stamp on defending them. That's why Detroit is bottom 10 in actual goals allowed per 60 (3.27).

Of course, the Leafs are no "average" offense, potting the second-most goals per 60 (3.59) this season. Nylander's 40 goals in 79 games were a huge part of that before the calendar turned to April, but he hasn't scored this month -- yet seems to be getting fed up with the dry spell.

The winger fired five shots in Toronto's last game, and I'm expecting him to keep trying to bust the gate down.

Median totals at numberFire (3.76), DRatings (3.85), and Massey (4.0) expect a big night from the Maple Leafs' offense. FanDuel Research's NHL projections, pegging Nylander for 3.79 median shots and 0.72 median goals, expect their second-leading scorer to be a huge contributor to it.

Columbus Blue Jackets at Nashville Predators

Predators -1.5 (-104)
Roman Josi 4+ Shots on Goal (-110)

The Columbus Blue Jackets have waved the white flag on the 2023-24 season.

They've failed to cover each of their last five games while continuing to trot out the struggling Jet Greaves (3.18 GAA) in an effort to slide as close as possible to the front of the 2024 NHL Draft Lottery. The Nashville Predators, needing this game in a close Wild Card race in the West, are in a great spot to continue the streak.

After all, Nashville's 52.7 expected-goals-for rate (xGF%) is seventh-best in the NHL and among the top teams. Columbus (45.5 xGF%) is fifth from the bottom. Add in the advantage that Preds goalie Juuse Saros (9.23 GSAx) provides in a must-win game, and the ice is extremely tilted here.

This is the best puckline (-104) you'll find on the market, and it's shows value when Nashville is 50.9% likely to cover, per Massey. DRatings (1.22) and numberFire (1.23) also project a healthy margin here. I'm even more bullish when these algorithms might not spot the tanking Jackets for who they truly are at the moment.

Columbus has also surrendered the second-most shots on goal per game (33.9), so Roman Josi's shot prop stood out. The blue-liner has met or topped three shots in 11 of his last 13 games, including every contest in April so far. He's always around this mark, and an elite matchup can push him past it.

With FanDuel Research projecting 3.75 median shots from Josi, I feel comfortable siding with the over.

Minnesota Wild at San Jose Sharks

Sharks +1.5 (-137)

There is no tanking going on in Silicon Valley.

Surprisingly, the San Jose Sharks have come on strong to cover a one-goal margin in five of their last seven games -- including three outright wins. They're arguably playing their best hockey of the season right now behind elite goaltending from Mackenzie Blackwood (14.47 GSAx; 19th in the NHL).

On the flip side, we saw the effect that elimination had on the Minnesota Wild last night as they limped through Vegas with a 7-2 loss. At a rest disadvantage, it's no foregone conclusion they blast through the lowly Sharks on the road anymore. In fact, tonight's starter in goal, Jesper Wallstedt (-2.31 GSAx), will likely keep things interesting.

Even against 57.8% implied odds, there is value backing the Sharks to cover again. numberFire projects it to happen 72.3% of the time -- a sentiment that Massey (69.2%) echoes.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.