NHL Betting Picks and Player Props to Target: Sunday 4/7/24

Austin Swaim
Austin SwaimASwaim3
NHL Betting Picks and Player Props to Target: Sunday 4/7/24

Sunday in the NHL is usually quiet, but today is a bit different with nine games. How can we find value amongst them?

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

Minnesota Wild at Chicago Blackhawks

Over 5.5 (-132)
Connor Bedard Anytime Goal (+185)

Two weak goaltenders and a 5.5-goal total? Sign me up.

The Minnesota Wild might officially be punting on their playoff chances by turning to Jesper Wallstedt this afternoon in Chicago. Wallstedt posted -3.38 goals saved above expectation (GSAx) in just one start this season, so even the lackluster Chicago Blackhawks offense should have a fighting chance today.

On the flip side, the Wild's 3.02 expected goals (xG) per 60 minutes rank a decent 17th in the NHL, and they're facing a Blackhawks D allowing the 8th-most in the NHL (3.23) themselves. Petr Mrazek's .910 save rate isn't too intimidating given the shot volume he'll likely face.

Top analytical models are pretty into this over. numberFire expects 7.12 median goals in this game, and DRatings (5.93) is also quite a bit over this total. If we're expecting additional scoring -- especially from Chicago -- expect Connor Bedard to be a factor.

The rookie phenom has 22 goals in 62 games with shot volume (3.19 per game) that regularly makes him a candidate. Expected to fire at Wallstedt, FanDuel Research's NHL projections have Bedard pegged for 0.47 median goals in this game, which would imply +113 odds for one.

Columbus Blue Jackets at Carolina Hurricanes

Under 6.5 (-122)

This number at FanDuel is significantly above all other major domestic books, so I'd sprint to grab it if you like the pick.

Laying pucklines with heavy favorites isn't something you do often when value betting, but this total seems to be a solid look expecting the Columbus Blue Jackets to struggle to score on a back-to-back.

The Carolina Hurricanes have allowed the fewest xG per 60 minutes (2.65) this season, and Columbus is tied for 10th from the bottom (2.94) on their own. Add tired legs, and this looks like a recipe for trouble.

However, don't discount Elvis Merzlikins (3.38 GSAx) keeping Carolina off the board. The Canes' quantity-over-quality system leaves them with just a 10.1% shooting percentage despite the heavy amount of xG per 60 minutes (3.35).

numberFire's model expects an under to cash 57.9% of the time in this spot -- a sentiment that Massey Ratings (63.0%) echoes. I'd pay up to -135 for this line.

Arizona Coyotes at San Jose Sharks

Sharks +1.5 (-138)

The San Jose Sharks won in overtime on Saturday. Can they make it two-for-two this weekend in their own weight class?

San Jose's win over the St. Louis Blues was a surprise, but this one shouldn't be. The Arizona Coyotes' 46.9 expected-goals-for rate (xGF%) is eighth-worst in the NHL and firmly in punching range for the Sharks' 41.0 xGF%.

Plus, San Jose is at home, and they saved Mackenzie Blackwood (14.05 GSAx) for today's game. It should be a low-scoring affair with Connor Ingram (18.14 GSAx) expected in goal for the Yotes.

While a victory on the moneyline might be a stretch, San Jose keeping this game close is incredibly realistic. numberFire expects the Sharks to cover 65.4% of the time, and Massey Ratings (71.5%) is even more optimistic.

St. Louis Blues at Anaheim Ducks

Robert Thomas to Record an Assist (-111)

Here's another line you won't find shorter than -125 at most other books.

The aforementioned Blues are looking to bounce back after losing a stunner in Silicon Valley, and they'll have another so-so foe in front of them on Sunday. TheAnaheim Ducks' 42.6 xGF% is the second-worst mark in the league.

I see the Blues (46.6 xGF%) as a probable first-round exit, but they can find success scoring on an Anaheim D letting up the fourth-most xG per 60 minutes (3.42). If they do, top-line center Robert Thomas likely dishes another apple.

Thomas has 54 assists in 77 games. The pass-first pivot ranks 19th in the NHL in that regard despite playing on a downright awful offense. Amazingly, he's probably due for more in the short term, failing to record an assist in 7 of his last 10 games as his offense has sputtered.

FDR's projections expect 0.96 assists from him on Sunday, which alone would imply -2400 odds for one. Hockey is random with few scoring events, but this is good value.

Dallas Stars at Colorado Avalanche

Over 6.5 (+104)
Miro Heiskanen to Record a Point (-113)

The game of the day in the NHL is in Denver. The Dallas Stars and Colorado Avalanche will battle for Central Division supremacy, and I'm expecting scoring here.

Dallas is eighth in the NHL in xG per 60 minutes (3.29), and Colorado is right on their heels (3.24). You didn't need me to tell you these offenses loaded with stars are awesome, but the best argument for scoring in this one is the goaltending.

In terms of goals saved above average (GSAA), both Dallas' Jake Oettinger (-3.00) and Colorado's Alexandar Georgiev (-6.20) have struggled mightily this season. Georgiev was just lit up for six goals on Friday.

numberFire (6.96), DRatings (6.57), and Massey (7.0) are all north of this projected goal total, so we should listen to our analytical friends.

If that's the case, I love this line for Dallas' top blue-liner Miro Heiskanen. Down the stretch, the Finnish stud has three points in two April games behind a gaudy TOI average (24:30) that includes time on the top power-play unit. It's that time of year.

FDR's projections expect 0.19 goals and 0.74 assists from Heiskanen during Sunday's battle, totaling 0.94 points. That is an excellent projection for a line that's ostensibly a pick 'em on FanDuel Sportsbook.

Looking for more NHL betting opportunities? Check out all of the NHL odds at FanDuel Sportsbook.

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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.