NHL Odds, Pick, Prediction: Senators vs. Jets (March 24)

NHL Odds, Pick, Prediction: Senators vs. Jets (March 24) article feature image

Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Josh Morrissey, Nikolaj Ehlers and Mark Scheifele.

  • The Jets are favored on Thursday night against the Senators.
  • Ottawa has its eyes on the offseason, while Winnipeg is geared up for the playoff race.
  • Continue reading for a full breakdown of this matchup, including a betting pick.

Senators vs. Jets Odds

Senators Odds+225
Jets Odds-285
Over/Under6 (-110/-110)
Time8 p.m. ET
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The Winnipeg Jets host the Ottawa Senators Thursday night in what will be the first meeting this season between the two teams.

The Senators are ready to close up shop and move on to the draft. They’ve gone 3-7 in their last 10, including a rough shutout loss to the Islanders on Tuesday.

The Jets are starting to get hot at a good time. They’re coming off a convincing shutout win against a desperate Vegas team, and have gone 6-3-1 in their last 10 games.

Senators Looking Toward Offseason

The Senators made a couple of moves at the deadline by acquiring Mathieu Joseph and Travis Hamonic, as well as trading Zach Sanford to the Jets. However, this season is long over, as they look to use the final 19 games to see what they have out of potential future pieces. The Sens have a fine foundation in place moving forward, with key pieces such as Matthew Tkachuk, Tim Stützle, Josh Norris and Connor Brown.

The Sens are about as below average as possible on the offensive end. The young talent produce well, but it’s not enough as they rank 30th, averaging 2.56 goals per game. Generating offense also isn’t their specialty with a 47.04 xGF% (expected goals) and they don’t generate many high danger chances. With a man advantage, it’s nothing to write home about, as Ottawa scores 18.5% of the time on the power play.

Given how poor the Senators have performed, the defense actually isn’t as bad as one would think. The Sens average about 3.27 goals against and are about league-average when it comes to allowing high danger chances. They also are decent on the penalty kill, with a 80.2% success rate.

Anton Forsberg has solidified himself as a No. 1 goalie for Ottawa. The Swede is riding high after signing a shiny new extension this past week and is posting great numbers. He now has a .918 SV% and a +6.4 GSAx (Goals Saved Above Expected). Backup Matt Murray is out for the season, so Filip Gustavsson takes over that role with an .886 SV% and a -9.4 GSAx.

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Jets Fighting for Playoff Spot

What an odd season it’s been for the team in Manitoba. From their coach resigning, to an underachieving season, to now trading forward Andrew Copp. However, the Jets are getting hot and are now only three points out of the coveted final playoff spot. They have a myriad of high-end talent, ranging from All-Star Kyle Connor to the likes of Mark Scheifele, captain Blake Wheeler and Pierre-Luc Dubois.

With the high-end talent on the Jets' roster, you’d expect them to be much better on the offensive end. But even though they score at a decent rate with 3.13 goals per game, but it’s nothing special. They’re 19th in expected goals with a 48.57 xGF% and are slightly above-average in creating high danger chances. On the power play though, they do fairly well, scoring at a 21.8% clip.

The defense is even more confusing, as it's among the worst in the league. The Jets average 3.03 goals against per game and allow the most high danger chances, with a subpar penalty kill that has a 76.5% success rate.

Connor Hellebuyck is coming off a strong 42-save shutout against Vegas on Tuesday. The former Vezina winner continues to prove why he’s a premier goalie in this league with a .911 SV% and a +9.9 GSAx.

With this game being the first game of a back-to-back, I would think coach Dave Lowry goes to backup Eric Comrie, who hasn’t seen much game this year (only 11 games). He’s managed to put up a .920 SV% and a +6.1 GSAx.

Senators vs. Jets Pick

When looking at the numbers, it would seem as if these teams are evenly matched. Except the Jets have the high-end talent to push them over the edge from their elite forwards (Connor, Scheifele) and goaltending (Hellebuyck).

You also have to take into consideration the desperation vs. nothing-to-lose factor. The Jets are riding high and are determined to make the playoffs, while Ottawa has lost a lot recently and has nothing to lose. 

In the end, I think Winnipeg can pull ahead of this duel big, as it continues to climb up the standings.

Pick: Winnipeg Jets -1.5 (-110)

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