Great bounce back night yesterday, going 4-1, winning +5.3 units, with the loss being a stupid .2u MacKinnon prop at +650. Tonight we have one of the biggest NHL slates of the season with 13 games. Let’s pick some winners!
Bruins vs. Predators (1:00)
On Thursday night the Preds gave me my biggest loss of the season with their 4-1 loss to the Sabres. Expected the opposite result on that one. That game ended their five game win streak and they’re still one of the hottest teams in the NHL, with a 12-2-1 record in their last 15 games. On the season, the Preds are 24-12-2, averaging 3.08 goals per game and allowing an average of 2.68 goals per game, ninth fewest in the NHL. The Bruins are on a pretty hot streak of their own after the Christmas break, with a four game win streak and seven wins in their last eight games and averaging a crazy 4.5 goals per game in that eight game span. They’re 21-11-2 on the season, averaging 3.12 goals per game and allowing a fifth fewest 2.53 goals per game. When these teams played on December 2nd, the Bruins won 2-0 in Smashville. I’d give Nashville the edge in goaltending here if Saros starts (currently projected), but the Bruins have played great hockey lately, so I’ll just completely skip this game. I’d slightly lean the under but not enough to bet on it.
Hurricanes vs. Canucks (1:00)
The Carolina Hurricanes fucked me on Thursday night, getting shut out 6-0 by one of the worst defenses in the league at home against Columbus. That was their second straight loss after losing 4-3 to Florida last week. Prior to those two games, the Canes were on a five game winning streak with just one loss in their last ten games. On the season, Carolina’s 24-8-2, averaging a sixth best 3.38 goals per game and allowing the fewest goals in hockey, just 2.32 goals per game. The Canucks have really picked up their season, now improving to a 16-17-3 since hiring Boudreau. They come into this game with three losses in their last four games but had only one loss in their last ten games before that. The Canucks defense has been pretty solid, allowing an average of 2.83 goals per game but today they’re going with backup Jaro Halak in goal instead of Demko, which doesn’t give me a whole ton of faith in them. Their offense, even in the hot streak hasn’t been great, averaging 2.5 goals per game, fifth fewest in the NHL. When these teams played in Vancouver on December 12th, the Canucks won 2-1. I think Carolina answers back and bounces back from their loss on Thursday with a win here. I considered betting the ML, but I’d rather not lay the -220, so I’ll just go with them to win in regulation for a unit. I also considered the Canes TT over but didn’t like it enough to bet.
Islanders vs. Capitals (2:00)
The 11-12-6 Isles come into this game on a three game winning streak with four wins in their last five games. They’ve been terrible this season offensively, averaging only 2.31 goals per game, the third fewest in the NHL but they’ve been pretty good defensively, allowing a tenth fewest average of 2.72 goals per game. The Caps come into this game with four straight losses, not great but they’ve been having a very good season. They’re 20-8-9, averaging an eighth most 3.32 goals per game and allowing an eleventh fewest average of 2.76 goals per game. I think this is a good bounce back spot for the Capitals and I’ll take them here for a unit.
Panthers vs. Blue Jackets (6:00)
Florida’s one of the top teams in the NHL, leading the Atlantic with a 25-7-5 record and coming off a 7-1 blowout win against Dallas last night (triple winner), for their third win in a row. They only have one loss in their last eight games coming out of the Christmas break, which came in a 6-5 shootout loss in Dallas. They’ve got an insanely impressive 20-3 record at home this season, they’re averaging 4 goals per game, second most in the NHL and allowing an average of 2.87 per game. Columbus killed me on Thursday night with their shocking 6-0 blowout in Carolina, but they suck with just three wins in their last nine games. They’re 17-17-1 and although their offense is averaging a pretty decent 3.17 goals per game, twelfth most in the NHL but have been brutal defensively, allowing an average of 3.46 goals per game, sixth most in the league. I like Florida to win a high flying game here. The prices are ridiculous on this game, but I’ll go with 1.5 units on the Panthers in regulation, 2 units on the Panthers TT over 3.5 and a unit on the over 6.5.
Red Wings vs. Sabres (7:00)
This is a terrible game. Aaron Dell and the Sabres got a shocking 4-1 win in Smashville on Thursday night for their first win in their last seven games. As a fan, I should’ve been thrilled with that game, but instead I got killed gambling on it. The Sabres blow, they’re 11-19-6, averaging 2.61 goals per game, seventh fewest in the NHL and allowing 3.47 goals per game, fifth most in the NHL. In addition to that, they have to start Aaron Dell again and despite his win on Thursday has been one of the worst goaltenders in the NHL this season with a 1-5 record, 3.87 GAA and .887 save percentage. Detroit hasn’t been a whole lot better, coming into this game with a 16-17-5 record with four straight losses and just one win in their last seven games coming out of the Christmas break. Statistically, they haven’t been much better than Buffalo on either end of the ice, averaging an eighth fewest 2.63 goals per game and allowing an eighth most average of 3.34 goals per game. Both matchups between these games this season so far were close and went to overtime with the Red Wings winning both of them, 3-2 and 4-3. I’d lean the over here, but with offenses both sucking, I’ll skip it. I’d lean the Red Wings here at home where they have a 12-6-2 record but at -175, I don’t think its worth laying the juice on them or limiting myself to 60 minutes on this game, so I’ll just skip it completely.
Lightning vs. Stars (7:00)
Last night the 18-14-2 Dallas Stars got blown out 7-1 in Florida, for their second loss in their last three games. They haven’t been great on either side of the stat sheet, averaging 2.82 goals per game and allowing an average of 3 goals per game. They’ve been significantly worse on the road than they are at home, with only a 4-11-1 record on the road. Tampa’s 25-9-5 and they’ve been hot lately with four wins in their last five games. The Bolts offense is just as solid as they’ve been the past two seasons, averaging a seventh most 3.33 goals per game, while allowing a 13th fewest 2.8 goals per game on average. I like Tampa to win this one tonight at home, especially with Dallas on the road on the second half of a back to back and Dallas is starting Dobby in goal, who hasn’t been great this season with a 3.86 GAA and .872 save percentage. I don’t like the idea of laying the -255 ML on the Tampa tonight, so instead I’ll go with 2 units on Tampa in regulation.
Flyers vs. Rangers (7:00)
The Flyers have been outright bad this season with a 13-16-7 record and come into this game on a six game losing streak. They’re allowing a tenth most average of 3.31 goals per game and have been even worse offensively, averaging a sixth fewest 2.56 goals per game. The Rangers have a very respectable 24-10-4 record which can mostly be attributed to their goaltending from Igor Shesterkin, who’s probably the leading Vezina candidate with a 16-4-2 record, 1.99 GAA and .939 save percentage. Because of that, the Rags are allowing the second fewest goals in the NHL, an average of just 2.45 goals per game. They’re averaging 2.84 goals per game. The first time these teams played this season was a pretty easy 4-1 win for the Rangers in MSG. I like the Rangers to win this game pretty easily again on the road and I’ll take them for 1.5 units along with a unit on the Flyers TT under 2.5 in regulation.
Blues vs. Maple Leafs (7:00)
This should be a great game between two really good teams. The Leafs are 23-9-3 and are coming into this game off a 2-1 loss in Arizona on Wednesday night that shocked the hockey world as they outshot the Yotes 46-18. Toronto’s been very good this season, averaging 3.31 goals per game, ninth most in the NHL and on Jack Campbell’s awesome play (18-5-3, 2.02 GAA, .935 save percentage), they’re allowing a third fewest average of 2.49 goals per game. The Blues aren’t far behind them at 22-10-5, with a 15-3-2 record at home. They come into this game on a three game win streak with just one loss in their last six games since coming back from the Christmas break. They’re averaging a fifth most 3.41 goals per game with a league leading power play that’s converting at a 29.6% clip and allowing an eighth fewest 2.62 goals per game. Who knows what happens in this game, which is probably the best one on the slate. I’d lean the Leafs to bounce back from that Coyotes loss on Wednesday, but at -200, I wouldn’t recommend that bet to anyone and there’s just not enough value for me to jump on the Blues at +155. This should be an awesome game to watch but isn’t a game worth betting to me and the best play on this one is nothing at all.
Blackhawks vs. Coyotes (8:30)
The Blackhawks haven’t been good by any means this season with a 14-18-5 record, but they come into this game with a three game win streak against Vegas, Columbus and Montreal. On the season, they’re averaging only a fourth fewest 2.35 goals per game and allowing an average of 3.32 goals per game, ninth most in hockey. The Ducks have exceeded expectations this season so far with a 19-14-7 record. They’ve struggled with injuries recently and they only have two wins in their last nine games. On the season, they’re averaging 2.93 goals per game and allowing an average of 2.85 per game. If they were healthy I’d be likely on the Ducks tonight, but they’re likely starting rookie Lukas Dostal in just his second career game, which doesn’t seem to be a good option going against the offensive talent of Pat Kane and with Marc-Andre Fleury in the other crease. I also don’t think its worth laying the -160 juice on the Hawks at home here, so I’ll just skip this game. No leans on the over/under either mainly due to the goaltending on the Ducks side, otherwise I’d probably have gone with the under.
Coyotes vs. Avalanche (9:00)
Last night we saw the most expensive line of the season on the Avalanche at home against the Yotes and it took them to a shootout to beat the Coyotes 4-3. Tonight these teams get a rematch in Arizona. The Avs are one of the top teams in the NHL this season at 23-8-3 and just two losses in their last 13 games. Their league leading offense is averaging an insane 4.26 goals per game. Their defense and goaltending hasn’t been good though, allowing 3.29 goals per game, eleventh most in the NHL. Arizona’s still one of the two worst teams in the NHL (along with Montreal) at 8-23-4 and just three wins in their last 13 games. They’re allowing the most goals in hockey, an average of 3.69 goals per game and scoring the second fewest, only 2.2 goals per game. Just like last night, the prices are pretty expensive here and I wouldn’t even consider betting the Avs on the ML at -430, but the regulation prices are a bit reduced here and Colorado should win, so I’ll take the Avs in regulation and the Avs TT over 3.5 in regulation for a unit each.
Kraken vs. Kings (10:00)
Seattle has been awful this season, coming into this game with an eight game losing streak and only one win in their last twelve games. They’re 10-22-4, averaging a ninth fewest 2.72 goals per game and allowing the second most goals in the NHL, an average of 3.67 goals per game. LA’s been decent at 19-13-5, on the three game winning streak with five wins in their last six game. Most recently, a shocking 6-2 win against Pittsburgh on Thursday night (double loser). They’ve been very good defensively, allowing a third fewest in the NHL 2.49 goals per game but haven’t been great offensively, averaging just 2.76 goals per game. I like the Kings to stay hot on the road here against a weak Kraken team and I’ll take LA for a unit.
Oilers vs. Senators (10:00)
The Oilers are a broken team and broken franchise, coming into this game on a five game losing streak with only two wins in their last 13 games, dropping to 18-14-2 on the season. Even with the top two leading scorers in the NHL, Leon Draisaitl (53 points, 26 goals) and Connor McDavid (53 points, 34 assists), they’re the only ones scoring with McDavid being involved in 48% of the Oilers goals and Draisaitl involved in 47% of them. Can’t win when you’re only offensive production comes from two guys. As a team, they’re averaging 3.26 goals per game, tenth most in the NHL but they’ve been bad on the back end, allowing an average of 3.27 goals per game. The Senators are coming off a 4-1 win in Calgary on Thursday, a loss for me. They’re 10-18-2 on the season, and shockingly have six wins in their last ten games. Haven’t been good though, averaging only 2.73 goals per game and allowing a fourth most 3.6 goals per game. The Oilers should win this one but I sure as shit am not laying the -200 on this game, so I’ll just skip it. I’d lean the over.
Sharks vs. Penguins (10:30)
On Thursday night the Penguins got crushed 6-2 in LA, only their second loss in their last 13 games. The Pens are a great team with a 21-10-5 record on the season, averaging an eleventh most 3.25 goals per game and allowing a sixth fewest 2.56 goals per game. The Sharks are an average team at 20-17-1, with three wins in their last four games and five in their last eight. They’re averaging an eleventh fewest 2.74 goals per game and allowing an average of 3.05 per game. These teams met a couple weeks ago on January 1st and the Penguins won 8-5 in a high flying game where the Penguins already had a 6-1 lead in the first period. It might not be as electric of a game, but the Pens should still win this one to bounce back from their loss on Thursday and I’ll take them for 2 units tonight.
1u Carolina in regulation (-145)
1u Capitals ML (-128)
2u Panthers TT over 3.5 (-195)
1.5u Panthers in regulation (-180)
1u Panthers/Blue Jackets over 6.5 (-132)
2u Tampa in regulation (-150)
1.5u Rangers ML (-154)
1u Flyers TT under 2.5 in regulation (-122)
1u Colorado in regulation (-230)
1u Colorado TT over 3.5 in regulation (-190)
1u Kings ML (-115)
2u Penguins ML (-160)
Record (Regular Season Total): 294-214-12 (+10.72 units)
Regular Season Pregame: 294-213-12 (+11.29 units)
Regular Season Live: 0-1 (-0.57 units)