NHL picks and odds Tuesday

the new York Islanders seem to fit a profile this season. The Isles are a team that you want to back as a big underdog but avoid when they’re a favorite.

According to the Action Network’s database, the Islanders are 7-6 as an underdog this season and 10-6 as a favorite. And even though the Isles have a better win rate as a favorite, they’re not profitable when they’re the chalk in 2022-23.

If you bet $100 in the 16 games the Isles closed as the favorite, you’d be down $47 (-2.9% ROI). But if you bet $100 on the Islanders when they went off as the underdog, you’d be up $361, which equates to a 27.8% ROI.

And to take it a step further, Lane Lambert’s Isles seem to punch up well as a bigger pooch. The Islanders are an impressive 4-1 on the year when they close at +135 or longer and would have returned a $100 bettor $537, which is good enough for a 107.4% ROI.

Can the Islanders continue this hot streak as underdogs this season? The game starts at 7 pm ET on ESPN+ tonight.

Mathew Barzal #13 of the New York Islanders
Mathew Barzal #13 of the New York Islanders
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Islanders vs Bruins prediction

All of this is dealing with small sample sizes, but it makes sense that the Islanders would be a dangerous underdog. The Isles have the best goaltending tandem in the NHL, which automatically raises their floor, and they’re a deep team with no real weak spots. They don’t have the talent needed to dominate on a consistent basis — which is why they struggle as the favorite — but they’re a cohesive unit that can rely on their goalie to keep them in games against standout opposition.

That’s exactly what the Islanders will need on Tuesday night when they take on the league-leading Boston Bruins, who are 14-0-1 at home this season.

Everything about the Bruins is elite this season. They lead the NHL with a +48 goal differential, they’re first in goals per game, and have the best goals-against average in the circuit, too. Boston’s power play ranks third, which pales in comparison to its No. 1 overall penalty kill, and the team’s .927 save percentage is also tops in the National Hockey League.

Betting on the NHL?

Matt Grzelcyk #48 of the Boston Bruins takes a shot
Matt Grzelcyk #48 of the Boston Bruins takes a shot
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And that’s just the surface-level stats. Under the hood, things look just as impressive for the Bruins, who rank third in expected goals rate, second in high-danger chance rate, and fifth in shot attempt share.

In other words, the Bruins are the best team in the NHL this season. And as such, it shouldn’t be a surprise that they’re a big favorite against the Islanders, who are 17-12 on the campaign and own the ninth-best goal differential in the league.

And as much as it’s fair to point out that the Isles have been overly reliant on their goaltending at times this season, that’s what makes them such a dangerous underdog.

It’s not been a fun time going against Boston this season, but everything in betting comes down to price and this number is too high on a deep team with elite goaltenders.

Islanders vs Bruins pick

Islanders +176 (FanDuel)

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