NHL Underdog Bets: Greg Liodice’s Likable Losers for Tonight (Tuesday, April 2)

NHL Underdog Bets: Greg Liodice’s Likable Losers for Tonight (Tuesday, April 2) article feature image

Gary A. Vasquez/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Brady Tkachuk #7 of the Ottawa Senators

If you like juicy NHL bets, be sure to check out Greg Liodice's Likable Losers for tonight, Tuesday, April 2, with his top underdog picks.

To be a likable loser, a number of stars have to line up. When we hit that place-bet button, we always want a "sure thing." Because of that, we tend to lean a certain way with NHL bets.

That "sure thing" is usually the betting favorite. Bettors probably see that a team is favored to win at -200 odds and think that’s the best way to cash a winner (or, at the very least, create some momentum). And if you care just about wins and losses with your NHL bets, you’re not wrong.

However, while that heavy favorite is a favorite for a reason, the name of the game is value. And one way to tilt the odds in our favor and find that value is by betting on NHL "losers" – teams that have underachieved and disappointed for the most part. But we don’t want to bet those underdogs willy-nilly – that’s just irresponsible.

Instead, in addition to betting on NHL losers that pass the eye test, we’ll examine trends with 10-game samples, 5-on-5 play, goaltending matchups, and more.

I’ll be here to conduct that research so you don’t have to. Let’s make some money and dive into what we have in store for tonight's NHL bets.

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NHL Bets – Liodice's Likable Losers

The team logos in the table below represent each of the matchups that I'm targeting from today's slate of games. Click on the team logos for any of the matchups below to navigate to a specific bet discussed in this article.

GameTime (ET)Pick
7:30 p.m.
8 p.m.
Specific betting recommendations come from the sportsbook offering preferred odds as of writing. Always shop for the best price using our NHL Odds page, which automatically surfaces the best lines for every game.

Islanders vs. Blackhawks

Tuesday, April 2
7:30 p.m. ET
Blackhawks (+210)

New York Islanders

The Islanders are like that ex-girlfriend who continuously tries to tell you that she’s changed for the better. Then every time you give her a chance, she’s great for a week or two, and then she goes back to her detrimental ways.

There’s a lot to like on the Isles. Mathew Barzal is having a point-per-game season while Bo Horvat and Brock Nelson are 30-goal scorers once again. Noah Dobson and Kyle Palmieri are also having solid seasons.

It’s everything else that’s suspect.

Why to Fade New York

This team is very slow, and defensively, sometimes looks lost.

To go with that, Ilya Sorokin does not look like the Vezina goaltender he was last year. In his past five starts, he’s playing to an .869 SV%, and for the season, he has a dreadful -5.1 goals saved above expected (GSAx).

New York came out on top in Philadelphia last night in overtime, but it wasn’t pretty. The Islanders let up a goal in the final 10 seconds of the game before winning it with a Brock Nelson goal.

This team is very untrustworthy, and the fact that it's in an aggressive playoff hunt doesn’t seem to help its play.

Chicago Blackhawks

Despite targeting the lottery this month, the Blackhawks are playing free and winning games. They've gone 6-4 in their last 10 games, including winning three out of their last four.

Connor Bedard is the guy everyone's eyes are on, and will be destined for stardom. Philipp Kurashev is also riding a high with five points in his last four games.

Chicago has received really solid play from its young guys along with veterans such as Nick Foligno, Seth Jones, and Tyler Johnson.

Why to Bet Chicago

It seems as if any time I back the Blackhawks, they end up disappointing me. Nonetheless, I have a good feeling about this, and so does my colleague Tim Kalinowski from the Line Change podcast.

While Chicago’s 5-on-5 play hasn’t been great for the past two weeks, its power play has risen from the ashes. In the past 10 games, the Blackhawks have scored at a 29% clip while the Islanders’ penalty kill still teeters at the bottom.

I’m very happy with what I’ve seen out of Petr Mrazek, as well. He may be a wild-card option at times, but he’s shown he can stick around in the league.

Pick: Blackhawks (+210 at ESPN BET)

Senators vs. Wild

Tuesday, April 2
8 p.m. ET
Senators (+123)

Minnesota Wild

I covered this game in my game guide for tonight, and I think it could be a good one.

Minnesota has a ton of high-end talent, starting with Kirill Kaprizov, who’s averaging well over a point per game. Joel Eriksson Ek has also formed into a legitimate scoring threat with 30 goals while Matt Boldy and Marco Rossi have proven to be viable options.

Goaltending in Minnesota is a major question for me. I like what Filip Gustavsson has done over the past five starts, but he's not proven to be fully trustworthy this season.

Why To Fade Minnesota

Minnesota has played really solid hockey for the past two weeks. During that span, the Wild have ranked in the top five in both expected goals and expected goals against. So typically, I wouldn’t fade them. Their problem is the ability to close out games.

By losing three out of their last four games, with two of them being at home, they’re unreliable to me. I’m also not a fan of their Jon Hynes, who I’ve always felt is a mediocre coach. What’s also of note is that grinder Ryan Hartman will not be available due to a suspension.

Another problem for them is their power play. In the past 10 games, the team has had a very weak power play, converting at only a 16% clip. The penalty kill is OK, succeeding 78% of the time, but it hasn’t been good enough for me to count on it.

Ottawa Senators

Tell me if you’ve heard this story before: The Ottawa Senators have started winning games when they’re firmly out of the playoff hunt.

Despite all the connotations, Ottawa is getting a ton of solid production from its top guys. Brady Tkachuk is on a heater, and Drake Batherson is producing at a consistent rate. It also has a solid back end with Jake Sanderson, Jakob Chychrun and Erik Brannstrom playing their best hockey yet.

Goaltending is a bit of a question mark, but it looks like Joonas Korpisalo is breaking out of his shell. I expect him to get the nod tonight.

Why To Bet Ottawa

Everyone knows the Senators have an exciting young roster. The consistent execution for 82 games is the question here.

Regardless of how inconsistent they've been, they’re consistent now. Ottawa has won five games in a row, and the Senators are playing solid 5-on-5 hockey and have a strong penalty kill.

To go with that, the team's last three road games have all been wins. For the majority of the season, Ottawa was a terrible road team. However, in the month of March, it had more road wins in the month of March than it had in all of 2024.

Pick: Senators (+123 at BetRivers)

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