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Thursday NHL Betting Odds & Picks: Jets vs. Flames Game 4 Preview (Aug. 6)

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Author: Michael J. Leboff

Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Connor Hellebuyck

Jets vs. Flames Game 4 Odds

Flames Odds -175 [BET NOW]
Jets Odds +148 [BET NOW]
Over/Under 5.5 [BET NOW]
Time Thursday, 10:30 p.m. ET

Odds as of Wednesday night via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.

The Winnipeg Jets have been through the wringer in the first three games of their best-of-5 series against the Calgary Flames. Winnipeg lost two of its best forwards in a Game 1 loss, bounced back in an impressive Game 2 win and then got their doors blown off in a 6-2 loss in Game 3.

On the surface it looked like a lopsided win for the Flames, but the ice wasn’t as tilted as the final score made it seem. Calgary went 3-for-4 on the power play but the Jets, the NHL’s worst 5-on-5 team by expected goals in 2019/20, hung with the Flames at even strength.

That’s been a theme this entire series as the Jets have been just as good, or maybe a tad better, than the Flames at 5-on-5.

Winnipeg Jets Calgary Flames
5-on-5 Goals For 4 4
5-on-5 Expected Goals For 3.92 3.96
5-on-5 Shot Attempts 115 101
5-on-5 High-Danger Scoring Chances 19 10

Expected goals (also known as xG) is a predictive statistic that gives an indication of whether results are based on sustainable factors like a steady creation of scoring chances, or whether it is down to aspects such as shooting luck or outstanding goaltending.

Simply put, an expected goals rate (xGF%) above 50% is considered good because it means a team is creating the majority of the scoring chances. Anything below 50% is usually a sign that a team is struggling to control play.

Stats cited from Natural Stat Trick.

Oftentimes a lopsided scoreline in a playoff series can provide betting value the next time out. Winnipeg closed at +135 in Game 2 and +133 in Game 3, so the +148 next to the Jets in Game 4 should jump at you right away. What changed between Tuesday and Thursday to cause a 15-cent jump in price? The Jets got blown out, that’s what.

Winnipeg Jets Calgary Flames
Game 1 +105 -130
Game 2 +135 -136
Game 3 +133 -155
Game 4 +148 -175

Odds via DraftKings

If your betting strategy is to just pick the team that’s more likely to win no matter the price, then by all means go pay up for Calgary. Unfortunately, there’s a lot more nuance to betting than that and that way of thinking will catch up to you down the road.

So even though the Jets lose this game far more often than they win, the price is good enough to invest in Winnipeg. The Flames are far from an elite team and they are being priced like they are a couple tiers above the Jets. Are they the better team? Certainly. Is the gap as wide as the odds suggest? No.

Make sure to keep an eye out for the best number, but I think the Jets have value at +135 or better on Thursday night.

[Bet now at DraftKings. CO, NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

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Author: Michael J. Leboff