NHL Betting Picks for Tuesday 3/12/24: Rangers, Hurricanes Tangle in Crucial Matchup

Scott Edwards Jr.
Scott Edwards Jr.@ScottEdwardsJr
NHL Betting Picks for Tuesday 3/12/24: Rangers, Hurricanes Tangle in Crucial Matchup

With 10 games on the slate tonight filled with NHL action, there should be plenty of options to consider betting on.

Whether it's moneylines or total goals, there are plenty of ways to bet on the NHL action all season. It's a long 82-game campaign, 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.

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 are from the NHL odds at FanDuel Sportsbook. All advanced statistics are used from MoneyPuck.com and NaturalStatTrick.com.

NHL Best Bets

New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes

Rangers +1.5 (-192)

The top two teams in the Metropolitan Division go head-to-head tonight as the New York Rangers and Carolina Hurricanes battle it out.

With the Rangers heading into the game as the underdog between the two, I'm happy to ride with them at +1.5. New York has been at the top of the Metro all season, but with the Hurricanes gaining on them, this game is one where they need to show up.

When looking at the statistics, both the Rangers and Hurricanes are very similar. Carolina dominates the league when it comes to Corsi for per 60 minutes (CF/60) and Corsi against per 60 minutes (CA/60), ranking first in both categories. The Rangers, meanwhile, are ranked in the middle.

The similarities kick in when it's scoring and keeping the puck out of their nets. Carolina is 8th in the NHL with 3.32 goals for per 60 minutes (GF/60). New York is tied for 9th with 3.28 GF/60. On the defensive end, the Rangers are 4th with 2.63 goals against per 60 minutes (GA/60) while the Hurricanes are 7th with 2.67.

Advanced stats side with the Hurricanes -- as they're averaging 3.3 expected goals for per 60 minutes (xGF/60) and 2.58 expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA/60). Their expected numbers line up with their actual totals, while the Rangers have outperformed in both regards with 3.19 xGF/60 and 3.06 xGA/60.

While New York will regress some over time, the Rangers can, at the very least, keep this game close tonight.

numberFire's model give the Rangers a 69.69% likelihood of covering tonight, a slight improvement over the 65.8% implied probability.

Florida Panthers at Dallas Stars

Under 6.5 Goals (-138)

For two teams that score at an elite rate, few teams are better than the Florida Panthers and Dallas Stars at keeping the puck out of their own net. Let's take Under 6.5 Goals tonight.

The Panthers have been the best team in hockey since the beginning of 2024. Since January 1st, the Panthers are 22-5-2, the best record in the NHL. The Stars haven't been too far behind, however, putting together a record of 18-8-5 in that span. Looking at the stats from 2024, these two teams are all the more similar.

Florida is scoring at the second-highest rate, registering 3.67 GF/60. They're just above their xGF/60 of 3.56, which also ranks second in this same span. Dallas isn't too far behind in either category, with their xGF/60 coming in at a 3.33 mark and scoring 3.60 GF/60. But the reason I believe in the under is due to how good these teams are on the other end.

No one has come close to matching the Panthers in this respect. Florida has put together a miniscule 2.04 GA/60 since January 1st -- unsurprisingly the best. Their defense has been out of this world, even if they're overperforming on their 2.68 xGA/60, which is still the fourth-best clip in the new year. The Stars aren't too far behind, though. They are actually a tick better by advanced numbers, sporting a 2.67 xGA/60, but come in with a 2.9 GA/60.

This very well could be a Stanely Cup Finals preview, so I expect it to be tight and for the defenses to win out.

Arizona Coyotes at Minnesota Wild

Coyotes +1.5 (-146)

The Arizona Coyotes keeping things competitive? That's what they've done for a lot of the 2023-24 season, so let's lean on them one more time against the Minnesota Wild.

Ultimately, these two teams aren't all too different outside of their respective records. While the Wild are fighting for a playoff spot, the Coyotes have accepted their fate after a strong first half turned into a disastrous second half. That said, there's still value with the Coyotes to cover.

Throughout this season, the Coyotes have not been high scorers -- as seen by their 2.9 GF/60. The good news for them is that the same can be said for the Wild, who are averaging just 3.04 GF/60. It's pretty equal defensively, too, as Arizona has a 3.32 GA/60 and Minnesota is at 3.23 GA/60. The similarities between these two teams only aid my expectation of the Coyotes being able to cover.

The goalies for tonight will be Karel Vejmelka manning the net for the Yotes and Filip Gustavsson starting for the Wild. Vejmelka has had his struggles -- 3.51 goals against average (GAA) and .895 save percentage (SV%) -- but has allowed three or fewer goals in each of his last three games. Gustavsson hasn't been much better than Vejmelka, with a 3.26 GAA and .894 SV%. As a result, neither team will have much of an advantage in goal tonight.

numberFire's model is all over this one, giving the Coyotes a 72.09% likelihood to cover. The implied odds at the -146 moneyline are just 59.3%.

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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.