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Winnipeg Jets at Colorado Avalanche odds, picks and best bets -

31st December, 16:37

The Winnipeg Jets (21-5-3) visit the Colorado Avalanche (23-12-4) Tuesday at Pepsi Center for an 8 p.m. ET puck drop. We analyze the Jets-Avalanche sports betting odds and lines, while providing NHL betting tips and picks around this matchup.

Connor Hellebuyck vs. Philipp Grubauer

Hellebuyck has played in a league-high 32 games, with 30 starts and two relief appearances. He is 17-11-3 with a .923 save percentage and 2.55 goals against average. Both rates are better than last season's numbers, and he already has three shutouts.

Grubauer comes into Tuesday on a personal four-game losing streak (0-3-1). He is 10-8-3 on the year with a .915 SV% and 2.81 GAA. He stopped 38 of 40 shots in a shootout loss to the Dallas Stars Saturday as his last outing.

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Odds courtesy of BetMGM; access them at USA TODAY Sports for a full set of today's betting odds. Odds last updated at 10:20 a.m. ET.

Jets 6, Avalanche 4

Both sides are trying to snap losing skids Tuesday. The Avalanche (-200) have dropped two straight and four of five. The JETS (+165) have lost each of their last three games and five of their last six. They were outscored 15-7 over the last three. The two central division rivals have met just once this season, with the Avs claiming a 4-0 win in Winnipeg Nov. 12.

I like the value of the visitors with neither side playing its best hockey right now. The Avs have a slight analytical advantage over the Jets with better rates of Corsi (total shot attempts) and scoring chances at 5-on-5 play, but they've overachieved on the year based on their numbers. Hellebuyck is the better of the two netminders.

New to sports betting? A $10 bet on the Jets to win in regulation, overtime or a shootout returns a profit of $16.50.

The JETS (+1.5, -161) are still playable on the puck line where they'll need to either lose by just 1 goal or win outright. The same $10 fetches a smaller profit of $6.20, but it's good insurance in a battle of slumping goaltenders.

Winnipeg is 20-19 against the spread overall but 13-6 on the road. Colorado is 24-15 overall but just 9-9 at Pepsi Center. This is unlikely to be decided by multiple goals.

Take the OVER 5.5 (-154). This side is getting plenty of juice while the Under (5.5, +125) offers plus-money, but both sides have given up at least three goals in each of their last three games with only their own offense holding them back. The floodgates will open for both teams against these 'tendies.

Esten's NHL betting record: 146-119

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