Free Picks: Montreal Canadiens vs. Winnipeg Jets

Montreal vs Winnipeg NHL
Montreal Canadiens vs. Winnipeg Jets, NHL, Bell Centre

Focusing on a North Division contest, Montreal and Winnipeg have been goal-scoring machines this season. When two of the better offenses go head-to-head, you know I’ll be looking at the total goals for this contest. With backups potentially starting, on top of some key statistics, I am looking forward to seeing how many goals the Jets and Habs will pot on Thursday.

One slip up in Montreal could cost your job.

The Montreal Canadiens finally got back into the win column, defeating the Ottawa Senators 3-1. However, they are still deep in the woods. Although they snapped a 5-game losing skid, tensions are still high in La belle province.

And it won’t get any easier Thursday night against Winnipeg.

While it’s easy to kick the Habs when they are down, I want to focus on the total goals for this free prediction. The reason being is that despite Montreal’s woes, their scoring has not taken an off night. For the Jets, they continue to be one of the best goal-scoring teams in the NHL, currently ranked 4th in total goals.

Recent games between Montreal and Winnipeg have split hitting the over. Why am I confident in this game reaching the over? To be completely honest, I am banking on the Jets doing the heavy lifting in this one. For a team that averages 3.36 goals per game, we’re already halfway to reaching the over if Winnipeg plays to their usual expectations.

As I said, Montreal is also scoring above the rest of the league average. The Canadiens and Jets aren’t terrible on defense, which leads me to believe goals will be scored Thursday night.

I think looking at the total goals for this contest is one of the best NHL bets you can make for Thursday. Montreal averages 33.7 shots per game, which is good enough for second in the NHL. On top of that, Winnipeg isn’t far off, averaging 29.9 shots per game.

Montreal allows nearly 30 shots per game, while the Jets average over 33 shots against per game. With the Jets/Canadiens defense allowing a ton of shots, coupled with their shooting prowess, I think the goal light will get extra work Thursday.

It’s expected to be a backup kind of night in Montreal as well. Carey Price and Connor Hellebuyck are projected to get much-needed rest – further adding to my belief this game will be high scoring.

All signs point to a high-scoring game in Montreal, which is why I am betting on the total goals over.

Stats

  • Winnipeg has won 3-straight against Montreal.
  • The over has hit in 6 of the last 10 games between WPG/MTL.
  • Montreal ranks 2nd in shots and 9th in goals.
  • The total has gone OVER in 9 of MTL’s last 13 games against WPG.

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have always wanted to be a writer and sports are my favorite thing in the world, so I combined the two to make a career. I have been a long-time gambler and sports betting writer that isn't afraid to look at the underdog or specials. I am covering the NHL, MLB and NCAA Football for BetPicks.ca and am a huge fan of both sports - as well as many others. Follow me on Twitter (@Patrick_Trudeau) so we can talk betting, sports, or why ketchup DOES belong on Poutine.