Really solid Saturday for me, going 7-2-1 to win 1.97 units. After the NHL gave us a day off for the NFL, we have a nine game hockey slate tonight. Let’s make it three straight profitable days!
Bruins vs. Panthers (7:00)
Both of these teams come into tonight’s game with a 2-0 record. Saturday afternoon the Florida Panthers got their second win of the season, beating my Sabres 4-3 in a close game where they were the better team and got rewarded with the win, capitalizing on power play opportunities. Thought their two games, they’ve now averaged 3.5 goals per game while allowing an average of 2 goals per game. The Bruins are 2-0 as well, coming off a 6-3 win against the Coyotes on Saturday night that turned into more of a sweat that I wanted. The Bruins blew a 3-1 early lead and the Yotes tied in the third before the B’s capped off the game with three straight goals to win and cover my puck line and team total. Boston’s looked good through their two games against the Yotes and Capitals (5-2 victory), averaging 36.5 shots on goal and allowing an average of 29.5 shots. Last season the Bruins won two of the three games they played against the Panthers despite Florida having the better season. I’d lean the Bruins here at home but not enough to bet on it, expecting a pretty close game. I do like the over though, expecting both teams to score and will take the alternate over 6 here for half a unit.
Red Wings vs. Kings (7:00)
The fiesty young Red Wings have started their season with back to back three goal wins against the Devils and Habs, coming off a 5-2 win in New Jersey on Saturday night. They’ve averaged 4 goals per game through those off an average of 31 shots and they’ve allowed an average of only 1 goals off an average of 34 shots. I wouldn’t put a ton of stock in those games though considering how bad the Habs are and how disappointing the Devils have looked through their two games. The Kings are coming off their first win of the season, in a surprising 7-6 super high scoring affair in Minnesota on Saturday, a big bounce back for LA after back to back home losses against Vegas and Seattle to start their year off. The Kings had a 3-0 lead early in that game and then a 6-3 lead and blew it both times to the Wild but got the game winner on Adrian Kempe’s goal 8:03 into the game. They got outshot 35-34 and got outhit 20-5, but ultimately got a much needed win on the road. Through their three games, the Kings offense has averaged 3.67 goals per game but they’ve struggled defensively, allowing an average of 4.67 goals per game on an average of 36 shots. Last season the Kings beat Detroit in both games they played, shutting them out 4-0 and getting a 5-3 win. LA’s the better team here and should win this cross conference matchup, but the Red Wings have played well, LA hasn’t impressed me and its too early in the season for me to bet this game with the Kings on the road. I’ll just lay off it.
Canadiens vs. Penguins (7:00)
After the Canadiens beat the Leafs in a great 4-3 win in their season opener at home, they’ve come back to expectations since then and lost back to back 3-0 in Detroit and 3-1 in Washington on Friday and Saturday. They’ve now averaged just 1.67 goals per game while only generating an average of 24.7 shots per game. Defensively, they haven’t been quite as bad as expected, allowing an average of 3 goals per game on an average of 33.7 show per game. They’ll face their toughest test of the season so far tonight facing off against the 2-0 Pittsburgh Penguins who have won both of their games 6-2 against both the reigning Eastern Conference champion Lightning and the bottom of the league Coyotes. The Pens have generated an insane amount of shots through those two games, an average of 49 shots per game, so the goals are gonna come. Last year the Penguins went 2-1 against the Habs, all in pretty high scoring games. I love the Pens to get a win on the road here. The -250 is a bit expensive but I’ll go with half a unit each on the Penguins in regulation and the Penguins TT over 3.5. With backup Casey DeSmith in goal for the Penguins, I’d lean the over as well but not enough to bet on it at 6.5, since I don’t expect a ton of offense out of the Habs.
Rangers vs. Ducks (7:00)
The Rangers started their year with back to back wins against the Lightning and Wild, looking like the best team in the NHL but they took their first loss on Friday night against the Jets, losing 4-1 in Winnipeg. Tonight they return home with Igor Shesterkin projected to be back in goal tonight after getting Friday night off. Through their three games, the Rags have average 3.67 goals per game on an average of 38.3 shots per game. They’ve allowed an average of 2.67 goals per game on an average of 32 shots on goal. The Ducks got obliterated 7-1 in a blowout loss on Long Island on Saturday night (such an easy winner for me on Isles ML there) and they’re now 1-1 after their 5-4 overtime win against Seattle in their season opener and probably should be 0-2 with the way the Kraken blew a two goal lead twice through that game. Anaheim’s struggled on both ends of the ice so far, averaging 25 shots per game and especially on defense, where they’ve allowed an average of 5.5 goals while giving up a high average of 43 shots per game. Last season the Rags beat the Ducks in both games they played and I don’t see things going any differently this year. I like the Rangers to win this game but I’m not betting the -245. I’ll take the Rangers in regulation for half a unit along with half a unit on the Ducks TT under 2.5 in regulation, not expecting the Ducks to be able to score on Igor.
Maple Leafs vs. Coyotes (7:00)
The line on this game at -530 is fucking ludacris. The Leafs are a solid team, coming into tonight’s game with a 3-0 record after beating both the Senators and Capitals 3-2 after embarrassing themselves and losing their season opener in Montreal 4-3. Even though they’ve completely screwed me when I bet on them, statistically Toronto has played well through their three games, averaging 3 goals per game on an average of 34.3 shots and allowing an average of 2.67 goals per game on an average of 25.7 shots per game. Leafs goaltender Matt Murray got a groin injury in their last game and was placed on the IR, so the Leafs will have to rely on Ilya Samsonov and Erik Kallgren, who they called up from the Marlies and is confirmed in goal tonight. Last season Kallgren struggled at the NHL level with a 3.31 GAA and .888 save percentage despite having an 8-4-1 record in his 14 games played. The Coyotes on the other hand are easily the worst team in the NHL, which I think is their plan anyway as they try to tank for Bedard. That has gone just as expected through their two games and they look horrible on both ends of the ice. After losing 6-2 in their season opener in Pittsburgh, they’re coming off a 6-3 loss in Boston on Saturday night that actually turned into a bigger sweat for me than I expected. The B’s blew a 3-1 early lead and the Yotes tied in the third before the B’s capped off the game with three straight goals to win and cover my puck line and team total. Through those two games, the Yotes have struggled mightily on both ends of the ice, they’ve only generated an average of 2.5 goals per game on an average of just 26 shots per game and have been even worst defensively, giving up an average of 48 shots on goal to give up 6 goals in each of those contests. Shockingly last year, the Coyotes beat the Leafs in both of the games they played against them despite the Yotes being one of the two worst teams in the NHL and the Leafs making the playoffs after a great regular season. There isn’t a chance in hell that I’m laying the insane juice on Toronto in this game tonight. They should win it but in no way is there any value to betting it. I will take a small stab for .2 units on the Coyotes in regulation, just for the hell of it on the crazy +600 value. This league has a ton of parity with even the most mismatched teams having the ability to win on any given night. Especially with the volatility so early in the season and anyway, the Leafs love losing games they should win. Blow Leafs Blow. I also like the +2.5 and +1.5 lines here at -110 and +150 respectively, but not enough to bet on it in what could just end up being a complete blowout win for the Leafs. I’d lean the over here too but at 7, I’m not betting on it.
Capitals vs. Canucks (7:00)
Neither of these teams have had a great start to their season. The Canucks are 0-2 to start off their year, losing 3-2 in Philly on Saturday night. Prior to that, they blew an early 3-0 lead and gave up five straight goals in their season opener to go on to lose 5-3 in Edmonton. They haven’t looked good, allowing an average of 4 goals while only giving up 28 shots. Not what you’d expect from Thatcher Demko, who has a 3.64 GAA and .873 save percentage through those two games. Offensively, Bruce Boudreau’s squad has scored an average of 2.5 goals per game on an average of 33 shots. The Caps got their first win of the season on Saturday, beating Montreal 3-1 after losing 3-2 to the Leafs and 5-2 to the Bruins. Through their three games, Ovi and his Capitals have averaged 2.33 goals per game on an average of 30 shots and they’ve allowed an average of 3 goals per game off an allowed 30.3 shots average. Last year these teams split their two games. I’d expect the Caps win this one at home and will take them for half a unit. I’d lean the under as well but not enough to bet on it.
Wild vs. Avalanche (8:00)
To say the start to the Wild’s season has been a disappointed through two games would be an understatement as they’ve allowed seven goals in each of their losses to the Kings and the Rangers on an average of 34.5 shots on goal. Marc Andre Fleury, the Vezina winner from two seasons ago has been awful through those two games with an insane 8.37 GAA and .776 save percentage. I can’t see that happening through the course of the season and he should get back to solid performance in goal, but not a great start. Minnesota’s offense hasn’t been bad. They were a top offensive team in the league last year and through their two games this season, they’ve averaged 4.5 goals per game on an average of 35.5 shots on goal. The defending Stanley Cup Champions after opening their season with an easy 5-2 win against the Blackhawks on their banner raising night lost the following night 5-3 in Calgary in what could have been a Western Conference Finals preview. The Avs still look fantastic, averaging 4 goals per game in their two games on an average of 30 shots on goal while allowing an average of just 22 shots. Last season these teams split their four games. I think the Avalanche win this game on the road tonight and think there’s definitely value in backing the champs at just the -125 price. Along with that, I love the over here and will take it for half a unit as well.
Stars vs. Jets (8:30)
The Stars surprised me through their first two games, beating the Preds 4-1 and 5-1 in their home and home with Nashville to stat the season. They were able to score on a very good Juuse Saros while only generating an average of 25.5 shots on goal. The Jets started off their season on Friday with a big 4-1 win at home against the Rangers despite getting outshot 34-41. Last season the Stars beat the Jets in three of the four games that these teams played. All four of those game were all very close contests, all going to overtime. I like the under a lot here with the Jets under Rick Bowness with Hellebuyck in goal against a Stars team he used to coach that have only allowed one goal in each of their first two games. I’ll take the alternate under 6.5 here for half a unit (for the record I like the 6 just as much, but would rather get the win instead of push for a reasonable price). I’d lean the Stars get a win at home but not enough to bet on it, in what I expect to be a close, grind it out kind of game. If it was later in the season and I had a larger sample size to see how these teams play, I’d consider the overtime prop here but its still too early in the year to get that fancy with shit like that.
Kraken vs. Hurricanes (10:00)
The Canes haven’t played spectacular teams so far this season, beating the Blue Jackets 4-1 and the Sharks 2-1 but those are still wins regardless for this Carolina team that I think ends up being very good this season. They’ve averaged 3 goals per game in those games on an average of 39 shots per game while limiting the shots allowed to an average of 25.5 per game with Freddy Andersen only allowing a goal per game. The Kraken come into tonight’s game at 1-1-1, coming off a 5-2 loss at home to the Golden Knights on Saturday that was never close, with the Knights getting off to a 5-0 lead and riding that out. In their two previous games, Seattle got a 4-1 win in LA and blew a two goal lead twice to lose in Anaheim in overtime for their season opener.
Through their three games, the Kraken have averaged 3.33 goals per game on an average of 34.3 shots and have allowed an average of 3.67 goals per game while limiting their opponents to an average of 28 shots on goal. These teams split their two games last season, both low scoring games decided by a goal. I just think Carolina’s the way better team in this matchup. This is a no brainer bet for me and I’ll take the Canes ML for half a unit.
.5u Panthers/Bruins over 6 (-136)
.5u Penguins in regulation (-156)
.5u Penguins TT over 3.5 (-165)
.5u Rangers in regulation (-150)
.5u Ducks TT under 2.5 in regulation (-156)
.2u Coyotes in regulation (+600)
.5u Capitals ML (-135)
.5u Avalanche ML (-125)
.5u Avalanche/Wild over 6.5 (-115)
.5u Stars/Jets under 6.5 (-134)
.5u Hurricanes ML (-175)
Record: 19-15-1 (-2.64 units)
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