Had a losing night on the big NHL slate last night, going 6-7 to lose 3.74 units. Tonight we just have a three game slate. Let’s bounce back a bit here!
Panthers vs. Lighting (7:30)
Tonight we have the first Battle of Florida of the season between the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning since last season’s second round of the playoffs where the Bolts swept the President’s Trophy winning Panthers. So far this season through four games each, the Panthers have been the better team. They’re 3-1 on the year and coming off a 4-3 win against the Flyers on Wednesday which screwed me as they gave up Philly’s third goal of the game with three seconds left in the game to lose my Panthers puck line bet. Florida has scored an average of 3.5 goals per game while generating an average of 35.5 shots on goal per game. Defensively they’ve struggled a big, allowing an average of 3 goals per game on an average of 32 shots per game. The defending Eastern Conference champion Lightning have started the year at 1-3, coming off 3-2 loss to the Flyers on Tuesday and their only win came against the Blue Jackets. They’ve struggled quite a bit to start the year on both ends of the ice. The Bolts have only managed to score an average of 2.5 goals per game on an average of 34.8 goals per game. Defensively, even with Vasilevskiy in goal for three of their four games so far this year, Tampa has allowed an average of 3.5 goals per game on an average of 34 shots on goal allowed. In the regular season last year these teams split their four games with each team winning a one at home and one on the road. Two of their regular season games went over while the other two stayed under and all four playoff games were low scoring, staying under the total. I’d think the Panthers get their revenge from last season’s playoff series and get a win tonight at home against the struggling Lightning. I’d lean the over. At the same point though, these rivalry games are tough to see how they play out and I don’t see value in betting any sides of this game and will just stay off it entirely.
Blackhawks vs. Red Wings (8:30)
The Red Wings have improved in the off season and have started their year 2-0-1, coming off their first loss of the season, 5-4 in overtime at home to the Kings on Monday night. Detroit’s offense has been solid so far this season, averaging 4 goals per game on an average of 31.7 shots on goal. With the addition of Ville Husso in goal, they have been good defensively as well, allowing an average of 2.33 goals per game on an average of 34.7 goals per game. The Blackhawks might be the worst team in the NHL this season and are definitely a lottery team who will likely get worse by the trade deadline with the expectation of Patrick Kane leaving Chicago. Chicago’s 1-2 to start the season, coming off a 5-2 win in San Jose last Saturday. Through their three games, the Blackhawks have only scored an average of 2.33 goals per game while generating an average of 23 shots on goal per game. Defensively they’ve been better than I expected so far (which isn’t a huge sample size with just three games), allowing an average of 2.67 goals per game on an average of 32.7 shots on goal per game. Last season these teams split their two games they played, both in high scoring matchups. I think the Red Wings are the better team here and should win tonight. I’ll take the Detroit ML here for half a unit.
Avalanche vs. Kraken (9:00)
The Stanley Cup champion Avalanche have started their season with a 2-1-1 record, coming off a 4-3 overtime loss at home to the Jets on Wednesday night. Through their four games so far this season, Colorado’s offense has continued to be very good. They’ve scored an average of 4.25 goals per game on an average of 32.8 shots on goal. Defensively they’ve struggled a bit, allowing an average of 3.5 goals per game on an average of 27.8 shots allowed per game. The Kraken are coming off an overtime loss on Wednesday as well, losing 4-3 at home to the Blues. They’re 1-2-2 to start their second season as a franchise, with three straight losses coming into tonight’s game. Seattle improved a bit in the offseason but I still don’t expect them to be a great team this year and they’re continuing with their struggles from a season ago on both ends of the ice. Through their five games, the Kraken have scored an average of 2.8 goals per game on an average of 32.2 shots on goal while allowing an average of 4 goals against on an average of 29.2 shots on goal. Last year in the three games these teams played, the Avs won two of the three with the loss coming in the last week of the season by a goal after Colorado had first place in West all locked up. The Avs should be able to crush Seattle tonight at home in a solid bounce back from their loss on Wednesday. The moneyline here at -275 is too expensive for me to bet on in this game but I will take the Avs in regulation for a unit along with the Avs TT over 3.5 for half a unit. I’d lean the over as well but not enough to bet on it.
.5u Red Wings ML (-113)
1u Avalanche in regulation (-177)
.5 Avalanche TT over 3.5 (-175)
Record: 39-33-1 (-5.74 units)
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