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Betting On Sabres Jets – Jets Protect Home Ice Against Road-Weary Sabres

Posted by Don Melrose on 3/2/2012 1:17:48 PM
betting on sabres jets

Sports betting players should be all over the race in the NHL’s Eastern Conference, which could turn out to be a duel between Winnipeg and Buffalo as the season winds down. The Sabres travel to Winnipeg on Monday at the end of a road trip, and that plays into the hands of a Jets team that is excellent at home.

What: NHL Betting
When: Monday, March 5th, 8:00 PM ET
Where: MTS Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Pick: Winnipeg Jets

Why Bet On Buffalo Sabres (29-27-8, 66 points)

The Sabres are making a push for the playoffs winning their fifth in six games, a 1-0 shutout of San Jose on the road and goalie Ryan Miller was the story, stopping all 39 shots he faced. It was the second time in his career he had back-to-back shutouts and he has now allowed seven goals in this six-game stretch, so it’s easy to see why the Sabres are rolling. Drew Stafford lit the lamp late in the first period to give Miller all the goal support he needed, but Miller had to work for it as the Sabres were outshot 39-19, including 17-5 in the third period, just one night after they were outshot 43-24 in a 1-0 win in Anaheim and the Sabres have to do a better job of helping their all-world goalie out. Miller has to be incredible between the pipes as the Sabres are 26th in goals scored, but they should be able to throw more shots on net to put pressure on the opposition, or at least limit the discrepancy in shots.

Defenseman Robyn Regher (lower body) had to leave the San Jose game due to injury, while Jochen Hecht (concussion) and Cody McCormick (concussion) are no closer to coming back for the Sabres, who hoped to add more scoring with the acquisition of Cody Hodgson from Vancouver on deadline day. More scoring would definitely boost their NHL betting odds, but Hodgson is also still a rookie, so it’s not fair to put it all on him. The Sabres will also have to continue their trend of strong starts as they’ve scored first in the past eight games.

Why Bet On Winnipeg Jets (31-27-8, 70 points)

The Jets halted a two-game skid with a massive 7-0 rout of Florida at home, and they really put the screws to the Panthers in the third period with five goals in the final 20 minutes. Evander Kane had a big night with two goals and two assists, while Jim Slater, Kyle Wellwood, Brian Little, Nik Antropov and Blake Wheeler potted singles for the Jets, who also got a 33-save performance from Ondrej Pavelec. After a 5-3 loss to Edmonton, the Jets needed a solid all-around effort and they got it from the back to the front, but they shouldn’t expect another seven-goal performance against a goalie like Miller. Still, their mission should be to get as many pucks on net as possible and force the Buffalo defense into making some mistakes. The Jets are seventh in the league on the power play, while the Sabres are 21st in penalty killing, so their best bet is to try and get as much man-advantage time as they can against Miller.

Winnipeg has no injury worries to concern themselves with heading into this game, which is huge because the Sabres are hot on the Jets’ heels in the Eastern Conference. They’re currently holding onto the final playoff spot and reaching the postseason in their first season back in Winnipeg would be one of the best stories of the NHL campaign. The Sabres could be their main competition for that spot as Washington and Toronto are currently floundering, so this final meeting of the season could end up holding a lot more weight than anyone would have thought it would at the beginning of the season.

How It Will Play Out

Buffalo fell 4-1 in their first game back in Winnipeg since the Jets left in 1996, and they’ll be the NHL betting underdogs on the road, where they are 13-16-1 ahead of a Saturday night clash in Vancouver, while the Jets are 20-10-4 at home. The Jets will also be off after the Florida romp, so they will be well rested and that is going to help them out against the Sabres, who will be wrapping up a five-game road trip and they should be fatigued.

Miller can’t keep the Sabres in every game unless they can score a few goals, which is why Winnipeg should be your pick on Monday night. The Jets are fantastic at home, they have one of the best atmospheres in the league and unless the Sabres can score at least three goals, they’ll end up on the wrong end of a loss. Take Winnipeg in Monday’s online betting picks.

Sabres Jets Betting Pick: Winnipeg Jets

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