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NHL Odds, Picks: Predators vs. Jets Prediction & Betting Preview (Saturday, April 8)

NHL Odds, Picks: Predators vs. Jets Prediction & Betting Preview (Saturday, April 8) article feature image

Jeff Halstead/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Nashville Predators goaltender Juuse Saros.

  • Nashville travels to Winnipeg on Saturday for an NHL game with playoff seeding implications.
  • Both sides will be motivated, but which will have the edge?
  • Carol Schram answers that and offers up her best bet for Predators vs Jets below.

Predators vs. Jets Odds

Predators Odds+135
Jets Odds-155
Over/Under5.5 (-120/+100)
Time7 p.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

Less than one week remains in the regular season, and Western Conference playoff positioning will be front and center when the Nashville Predators visit the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday.

Nashville, Winnipeg and the Calgary Flames are in the thick of a three-way battle for the final playoff spot.

With a 4-2 record over their past six games, the Predators are now just a single point behind the Jets and Flames. Meanwhile, the Jets have squandered a significant advantage in the standings by going 11-13-2 since the All-Star break. After dropping a 3-1 decision on home ice against Calgary on Wednesday, Winnipeg is now fighting for its playoff life.

Here’s the latest on both teams, and your best bet for Predators vs Jets.

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Nashville Predators

The Preds’ success starts with Juuse Saros, who’s on track to lead all goalies in minutes played for the second-straight season. Saros’ .918 save percentage is identical to his 2021-22 campaign, when he finished third in Vezina Trophy voting. He’s also passed Boston’s Linus Ullmark and leads the NHL with 43.4 goals saved above expected in all situations, per MoneyPuck.

Since the March 3 trade deadline, the Predators have allowed just 2.68 goals per game. That puts them in the top 10, and well ahead of the Jets (3.12). However, Nashville struggles to score goals and is dealing with a long list of injuries to key offensive players.

Now, the Preds aren’t just hanging around. They’re defying the data and making a real push for their ninth consecutive postseason berth.

Winnipeg Jets

Nino Niederreiter has seen this matchup from both sides as the 30-year-old power forward was acquired by Winnipeg on Feb. 25. After signing a two-year free-agent contract with the Preds last summer, Niederreiter had 28 points in 56 games before being sent to Winnipeg. He’s producing at a similar rate in his new home and has 10 points in 18 games.

But just as the Preds struggled to pick up wins when he was in the mix, the same is now true in Winnipeg. The Jets are 8-8-2 since Niederreiter arrived.

That’s not to suggest Winnipeg’s woes are Niederreiter’s fault. But it is a unique note in the setup for this game.

Lately, the Jets’ biggest issue has been consistency. They can look like world-beaters at time, but with points at a premium, there have been too many nights when they’ve let opportunity slip through their fingers.

The Jets, of course, are also solid in net, with Connor Hellebuyck sitting second behind Saros in minutes played this season. Winnipeg is also struggling to score, with just 2.76 goals per game since March 3.

Predators vs. Jets Pick

Saturday’s game is arguably the biggest between Nashville and Winnipeg since that second-round playoff series in 2018, when the Jets took down the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Predators in seven games.

Even without those high stakes, all three previous meetings between these teams this season were tightly contested. Two went to overtime. Two were won by the Jets. And all three finished with totals below Saturday’s under of 5.5.

When Saros and Hellebuyck square off, it’s reasonable to expect a low-scoring contest and an under bet at plus money offers solid value.

If you’re feeling even bolder, back the underdog Preds to continue to work their magic  and leapfrog the Jets in the standings.

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