Free Picks: Winnipeg Jets vs. Montreal Canadiens

Jets vs Canadiens NHL
Winnipeg Jets vs. Montreal Canadiens, NHL, Bell MTS Place

Up north you will find two of the best offenses in the NHL – as well as two of the best goaltenders. Even with Connor Hellebuyck and Carey Price in goal for their respective clubs, Montreal vs. Winnipeg has been high-scoring this season. Wednesday night, the Jets and Habs add another chapter to their season long rivalry.

It's time for Connor Hellebuyck vs. Carey Price.

When these two teams meet, you are thinking of one thing: goaltending. Inside the blue paint for Montreal is Carey Price. One of the most consistent goaltenders in the NHL today. Opposite to him is Connor Hellebuyck, the starting netminder in Winnipeg who has helped turn the franchise around.

Wednesday night, these two elite goalies face off once again. These two teams met recently, with the Habs dropping the Jets 4-2. For this free pick, I want to focus on total goals.

What has helped Price and Montreal this season is their ability to deflect shots away from their net. The Canadiens rank 11th in shots against per game. Price is stellar. Add in the fact that the Canadiens turn away a number of chances before they even reach the goal and it’s easy to see why they have had defensive success this season.

According to advanced stats, Carey Price and Connor Hellebuyck have 3 really bad starts each. This is judged by save percentage of less than 85% in a game. For the number of starts each player has had this season, this statistic proves how strong each netminder has been for their respective club.

Despite all the advanced stats and talents in the crease, Winnipeg and Montreal contests have been high-scoring this season. Does the trend continue on Wednesday? I think so. I was leaning towards this being a low-scoring affair, but the numbers don’t lie.

Even with Hellebuyck and Price in goal, the Canadiens and Jets are scoring at an impressive rate – enough to affect the regular season odds for each team.

In 5 games played this season, the two teams have combined for 33 goals. Now, Hellebuyck and Price have not gone head-to-head in each of those contests, but it proves how offensively gifted each team is against each other.

I think taking the over of 5 is one of the best NHL bets you can make for this game.

Stats

  • The total has gone over in 7 straight games for the Jets.
  • The total has gone over in 4 of the last 5 games between WPG/MTL.
  • The total has gone over in 7 of last 9 games Montreal has played in Winnipeg.
  • Montreal averages 3.80 goals per game in last 10 against Winnipeg.

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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.