NHL Hockey Betting: Winnipeg Jets at Philadelphia Flyers

NHL Hockey Betting:  Winnipeg Jets at Philadelphia Flyers

All you need to know about the brutal Central Division you can learn by looking at the Winnipeg Jets. They’re playing reasonably well winning 4 of 5 and 5 of 7. That’s solid, but not incredible. They’ve got a ton of injuries to key players and a few more ‘questionables’ on the injury list. Despite what looks like a setting for a mediocre year to date performance the Jets are actually in second place in hockey’s toughest division. That sounds a lot better than it really is since there’s three teams within three points of the Jets. The St. Louis Blues are 1 point back with the Minnesota Wild and Dallas Stars 3 points back. It wouldn’t take much for Colorado and Nashville to get back into the mix either. Everybody is looking up at the Chicago Blackhawks who are 8-1-1 in their last 10 games.

This looks like a good spot for the Jets to pick up points. The Philadelphia Flyers have been mediocre at best this year and their goaltending is a dumpster fire at the moment. In recent years, they’ve split time between Steve Mason and Michel Neuvirth. Neuvirth has gone on streaks of amazing play–like in the final three games of last year’s playoff series loss to Washington. Now, however, Mason has been ineffective and Neuvirth is injured. Mason will almost certainly get the start here since the Flyers really don’t have a good alternative. Philly hasn’t even given any ice time to Mason’s backup, 22 year old prospect Anthony Stolarz. Is is something of a head scratcher since Stolarz has been capable in his NHL work so far. He’s a well regarded prospect (and if you’re a GM that has written off a 6’6″ goalie at age 22 you’re in the wrong line of work) so it’s curious that they don’t give him a shot. In all honesty, it would be hard for him to underperform Mason who hasn’t been impressive this year at 3-5-3, 3.24 GAA, 0.884 save percentage.

You can’t write off the Flyers completely because they’ve been good on the offensive end this year. They have the #4 goals per game in the NHL (3.2) and the #2 power play (27.4). That’s largely negated by the #30 goals against average (3.5) and the #25 kill percentage. Even with injuries, the Jets look like the right side. Philly isn’t a bad team but no real interest until they get their goaltending issues dealt with.