NHL Daily Gambling Preview – 12/17/21

Last night I went 7-5, losing 2.94 units which I’ll mainly attribute to late covid protocol adds. This nonsense continues to fuck up the NHL as a ton of completely healthy guys aren’t allowed to play for getting positive tests on wildly inaccurate tests when they don’t have any symptoms for a virus they’re all vaccinated for. It’s insanity. Anyway, tonight we have a six game slate unless more games get cancelled.

Penguins vs. Sabres (7:00)

Last night the Sabres got their second win in a row, 3-2 in a shootout in Minnesota, which lost me almost four units. They’ve been playing scrappy hockey their last few games but still suck with a 10-15-4 record, averaging a tenth fewest 2.69 goals per game and allowing the fifth most goals in hockey, an average of 3.45 goals per game. Tonight they’re likely starting Malcolm Subban in goal, who’s ATROCIOUS. The Penguins are on fire with a 15-8-5 record, coming into this game on a five game winning streak. They’re averaging 3 goals per game and on Tristan Jarry’s great play in goal (1.93 GAA, .934 save percentage), they’re allowing a third fewest in the NHL average of 2.43 goals per game. The first time these teams played this season, the Sabres won 2-1 in Pittsburgh. I don’t expect the Sabres to win three games in a row and I don’t see the Penguins losing to them at home twice. I’m not laying the -345 on the Pens tonight, but I’ll take them for a unit in regulation. 

Rangers vs. Golden Knights (7:00)

Vegas is cruising, on three game winning streak and only have one loss in their last seven games after last night’s 5-3 win in NJ to improve to 18-11 on the season. The Golden Knights are averaging a third best in NHL 3.55 goals per game, that outscores their defensive issues allowing an average of 3.07 goals per game. The Rangers have struggled without Igor Shesterkin and just have two wins in their last five games, neither of which have been against good teams (Buffalo and Arizona). On the season, they’re 19-7-3, averaging 2.86 goals per game and allowing a sixth fewest 2.55 goals per game but with Georgiev (2.98 GAA, .898 save percentage) confirmed to start in goal, they haven’t been great at keeping the pick out of the net. I’ll take Vegas and the over 5.5 here for a half unit each.

Blues vs. Stars (8:00)

With the top two goalies still out for the Blues, Charlie Lingren is 4-0 with an impressive 1.29 GAA and .956 save percentage to lead St. Louis to four wins in their last five games to get them to 16-8-5 on the season. They’re averaging a sixth most in the NHL 3.38 goals per game and allowing an average of 2.69 goals per game. Dallas has dropped their last four straight games to drop to 13-11-2, most recently against this same Blues team at home on Tuesday where the Blues won 4-1. The Stars are averaging 2.65 goals per game and allowing 2.81 goals per game. Prior to that Tuesday game, the first time these teams played on 11/20, the Stars won 4-1 at home. I’d lean the Blues win this one at home tonight but I’m not betting this game. This could be a pretty good game to watch. 

Jets vs. Capitals (8:00)

This morning the head coach of the Winnipeg Jets, Paul Maurice resigned, kind of out of nowhere. I think he’s a pretty good coach and someone will hire him but it just seemed kind of strange and since the team has had their struggles this year and are 13-10-5, I could see that being a mutual parting of ways. The Jets come into this game with three losses in their last four games, they’re averaging 2.86 goals per game and allowing an average of 2.6 goals per game. The 17-5-7 Caps come into tonight’s game on the road of a 5-4 loss in Chicago on Wednesday night (double loser for me) and three wins in their last five games). They’re missing a few guys out on COVID protocol but not enough for me to see a huge impact. They’re averaging a fifth most 3.41 goals per game and allowing an eighth fewest in the league average of 2.59 goals per game. I like the Caps to bounce back with a win here and I’ll take them for half a unit.

Blackhawks vs. Predators (8:30)

Last night Nashville got their sixth win in a row, 5-2 against Colorado with a bunch of late scratches for the Avs with some key players going on covid protocol. The Preds are missing a ton of their players as well, out on covid protocol and missing their entire coaching staff. On the season, Nashville is averaging 2.93 goals per game and are allowing an eleventh fewest average of 2.66 goals per game, mostly on Juuse Saros good play in goal. Tonight on the second half of a back to back, they’re likely to start David Rittich though, who’s a clear step backwards for them from Saros. The Blackhawks are 11-15-2, winning three of their last five games. They’re allowing an eleventh most 3.21 goals per game and averaging a fourth fewest 2.29 goals per game.  When these teams played on 11/7, the Hawks won 2-1 in OT. With all the covid problems for Nashville and Rittich probably starting, I’ll skip this game entirely, I just don’t see value in betting the Hawks here at -152. I’d slightly lean the over here too but not enough to bet it.

Ducks vs. Coyotes (10:00)

The Ducks have been great this season at 17-9-5, far exceeding expectations anyone had for them this year. They’ve won four of their last five games, they’re averaging 3.1 goals per game and allowing a seventh fewest 2.58 goals per game. Arizona’s dead last in the NHL at 5-21-2, losing their last six straight games. They’re dead last in scoring, averaging only 1.79 goals per game and allowing the most goals in the league, an average of 3.64 goals per game. The first time these teams played this season on 11/5, the Ducks won 3-1. I’d pretty much expect the same result tonight with an easy win for Anaheim at home. Not laying the -315 on the ML but I’ll take the Ducks in regulation for a unit.

Game Bets

1u Penguins in regulation (-200)

.5u Vegas ML (-137)

.5u Vegas over 5.5 (-130)

.5u Caps ML (+102)

1u Ducks in regulation (-182)

Record (Regular Season): 199-167-9 (-20.38 units)


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