On the second night of a back-to-back, the Winnipeg Jets head to the Windy City to take on the plummeting Chicago Blackhawks. Despite the discrepancy in records, the Jets are only slightly favored on the NHL betting lines. This is largely to do with the team going with its backup netminder, David Rittich, who has not had the best of seasons.
Jets Rolling With Rittich
Winnipeg is overachieving significantly, or this team is due to regress in a bad way. Either way, going with Rittich with no rest for the skaters could mean an upset is more probable. The Jets are 2-1-0 on the second night of a back-to-back and both wins came in overtime. Rittich has also not played well, with an 88.1 save percentage and -2.9 goals saved above average.
Most notably, he was in net when Winnipeg got upset by the lowly Blue Jackets, letting in four goals on 26 shots. This was the only time Winnipeg has lost as a favorite this season (7-1-0). But against Chicago, Rittich may not have to do much as Winnipeg has won six of its last seven meetings against it.
In front of Rittich will be one of the hottest skater groups in the NHL. Defenseman Josh Morrissey has scored 19 points in his last 15 games, while four other Jets are on pace to finish with over 70 points. At some point, Winnipeg will cool off. But now may be the time to bet online on it.
Scoop on Free Play from the Locker Room
Tank You Very Much, Chicago
While the Jets are hot, the Blackhawks are tanking. The team is missing several key players like captain Jonathan Toews (illness) and defenseman Jarred Tinordi (hip) on top of a pair of goaltenders. Chicago has lost 10 of its last 11 games.
It has not won at home since November 3, having lost six straight (0-5-1) at the United Center. In this stretch, Chicago has been outscored by double: 13-27, and has gone 1-5 on the puck line even. We’re hard-pressed to find anything positive to say about Chicago other than bettors taking to the opponent’s puck line when facing them.
Additionally, the total has gone over on eight of Chicago’s 13 home games this season. Down to their third-string goaltender with their second-best defenseman sidelined, betting the over could be the best play on the online sports betting lines.
Jets vs Blackhawks Injuries
Jets vs Blackhawks Head-to-Head
The Blackhawks have won three of their four home games against the Jets. All four went under the total. At least one team was held to one goal in three of these four games. No team scored more than four goals in any of these meetings.
Jets vs Blackhawks Game Information
- Game: Jets (17-7-1) vs Blackhawks (7-14-4)
- Day/Time: Friday, Dec. 9, 8:40 p.m. ET
- Location: United Center, Chicago, IL
- Jets vs Blackhawks Live stream: NHL.TV
Jets vs Blackhawks Betting Lines
Jets vs Blackhawks Picks & Prediction
At their current price, Winnipeg is worth betting even if Rittich is the one in net. It’s hard to see Chicago outplaying an inspired Jets team, especially with their injuries. Arvid Soderblom is just 2-7-2 for the ‘Hawks and will be busy against an aggressive Jets attack. But on the other end, the shaky Rittich may let in a few goals. This one will go over its total.
The Winnipeg Jets are listed at -140 in our Vegas NHL lines. This means that if you wager $100 on Jets, you have a chance to win $71. The Chicago Blackhawks are +120, offering a chance to win $120 on a $100 wager.
The implied probability attached to the betting lines gives Winnipeg Jets a 58.33% chance to win, with Chicago Blackhawks at 45.45%.