NHL Betting Picks and Player Props to Target: Saturday 5/4/24

Austin Swaim
Austin SwaimASwaim3
NHL Betting Picks and Player Props to Target: Saturday 5/4/24

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are some of the best postseason matchups you'll find anywhere in sports, and -- you guessed it -- they're a blast to bet on, as well.

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.

Maple Leafs-Bruins Game 7 Best Bet

Over 5.5 (+106)

Out of nowhere, it takes some courage to bet NHL overs, and bettors are paying attention.

The last three playoff games completed would have hit the under at 3.5 goals, so 5.5 now seems like an unattainable shootout. However, it's worth remembering why recency bias to "maximum stakes" doesn't get you very far. Three of last year's five games in the Cup Finals had at least seven goals.

The Toronto Maple Leafs (3.13) and Boston Bruins (3.33) have combined for 6.46 expected goals (xG) per game in a tight series, but these two goaltenders have played extremely well. Goaltending can be fickle, and one poor night at the office could easily lead to late-game empty-net desperation that cruises past six goals.

numberFire (5.88), DRatings (5.97), and Massey Ratings (5.85) combine for an average median total of 5.90 goals. Historical projected median totals between 5.80 and 6.00 hit the over 54.1% of the time, per nF's historical database, and that median would imply roughly -117 odds for 5.5 goals.

It's frightening to expect scoring in a must-win game given how the last few days have played out, but fortune favors the bold -- and informed.

Maple Leafs-Bruins Game 7 Player Props to Target

Joseph Woll Over 25.5 Saves (-106)

"The Brick Woll" is quickly becoming a playoff legend in Toronto.

Joseph Woll has won three straight elimination games to start his Stanley Cup Playoffs career, and he'll need a fourth to advance Toronto forward. Woll has allowed just two goals in 41 save opportunities since taking over the net in Game 5.

This prop, more appropriately, has to do with the Bruins, though. Their offense stalled to put just 23 pucks on net in Game 6, but I'm optimistic they bounce back. In the regular season, Boston put up 29.8 shots on goal at home compared to 27.7 on the road. Woll made 27 saves on 28 shots in Game 5, which checks out.

This line should be a bit higher. FanDuel Research's NHL projections have Woll at 28.5 median saves -- even more than Boston's Jeremy Swayman. I'd agree he'll likely be the busier netminder given the B's are in their building and trying to avoid a second straight 3-1 collapse.

Brad Marchand 3+ Shots on Goal (-102)

It helps when my two favorite props correlate with each other -- likely for the same reason.

Boston's captain, Brad Marchand, will certainly be swinging to avoid another embarrassing elimination. Marchand's shot volume has directly followed the scoring path of this series. In the first three games, he posted 12 shots on goal, but he's totaled just 4 in the three games since with minimal scoring. If leaning toward a regression to the over, look for him to be involved.

His on-ice role is certainly great, captaining the second power-play unit and playing at even strength with Charlie Coyle and Morgan Geekie. It's how he's logged 19:15 TOI in the series on both special teams units, but he's also got to stay out of the box. He's served six penalty minutes in the past two games, presenting a bit of a buy-low opportunity should he do so.

FDR projects Marchand for 3.27 median shots in tonight's game, which alone would imply roughly -174 odds for a minimum of three.

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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.