I started off hot yesterday going 4-1 on the early games but with Pittsburgh losing to the Canucks in what was a great spot on my biggest bet of the day that swung my night and I ended up finishing the night 4-3, losing 1.16 units. Disappointing night but I feel like I made the right reads on every game. Today we have a huge twelve game NHL slate with a lot of fun games on the docket. Let’s try to get some wins.
Stars vs. Rangers (2:00)
We start the day with what I expect to be a low scoring defensive battle between the Stars and Rangers. Dallas has been off to a hot start to their season with a 5-2-1 record and are an undefeated 3-0 at home this year, coming off a 2-0 shutout over the Caps on Thursday. They’ve gotten fantastic goaltending from Jake Oettinger, who has an incredible 1.17 GAA and .960 save percentage this season and is confirmed in goal today. With his play in goal, the Stars have allowed an average of just 1.88 goals per game on an average of 31.5 shots on goal they’ve given up per game. Their offense has been efficient as well, averaging 3.13 goals per game on an average of 28.4 shots per game. The Rangers come into today’s game on a four game losing streak to drop to 3-3-2 on the season. They’re coming off getting shut out 3-0 on Wednesday by their rival Islanders despite outshooting the Isles 41-29. New York’s offense has averaged 2.75 goals per game on an average of 37.4 shots on goal per game and they’ve allowed an average of 3.13 goals per game on the average of 29.9 shots they’ve allowed. Reigning Vezina winner Igor Shesterkin got the night off Wednesday and is confirmed to start in goal today. These teams split their games last season with a 3-2 Stars win early in the year and a 7-4 Rags win late in the season. I’d slightly lean the Stars win at home today but not enough to bet on it. I do like the under here though in what should be an awesome goaltending battle between Shesterkin and Oettinger and I’ll take the under today for half a unit.
Panthers vs. Senators (4:00)
On paper this game doesn’t look great but I’d expect this one to be a pretty fun matinee between two teams that have actually played similar hockey so far this season. The Sens are 4-3, ending their four game win streak on Thursday with a 4-2 loss at home to the Wild, getting outshot 40-29 by Minnesota. Ottawa’s offense has been surprisingly very good this season, scoring an average of 3.86 goals per game on an average of 33.1 shots per game. They’ve allowed an average of 3.14 goals per game on an average of 31.3 shots they’ve allowed on goal this season. The Panthers are coming into today’s game with a 4-3-1 record after two losses in a row in Chicago (4-2) on Tuesday and in Philly (4-3) on Thursday. Florida has scored an average of 3 goals per game on an average of 36.9 shots they’ve generated. They have struggled a bit with their goaltending with Sergei Bobrovsky, projectedto start today having a 3.06 GAA and .897 save percentage in the six games he’s played. They’ve allowed an average of 3.13 goals per game despite only giving up an average of 28.6 shots on goal against them. Last season the Panthers won three of the four games between these Atlantic Division teams. I’d lean Florida wins this game at home this afternoon but not enough to lay the -205 price on them in this game. I’d expect both games to score in this game with solid offenses and two defenses that have holes in them. I’m not betting the over 7 but I’ll buy it down to 6.5 even though the juice on it is a little high for half a unit.
Sharks vs. Lightning (4:30)
The Sharks surprisingly got a big 4-3 overtime win on Thursday night at home against the Leafs on a beautiful Erik Karlsson game winner. This team has struggled quite a bit this season and come into today’s game with a 3-7 record. Their offense has been abysmal, averaging 2.1 goals per game on an average of 27.3 shots per game and their defense has allowed an average of 3 goals per game on an average of 30.1 shots on goal they’ve given up. The Lightning, who have been the Eastern Conference champions each of the last three years are 4-4 this season, coming off a 4-2 win in Anaheim on Wednesday night. The Bolts have scored an average of 3 goals per game on an average of 31.5 shots per game and they’ve allowed an average of 3.13 goals per game on an average of 32.9 shots on goal allowed. With Brian Elliot getting the start in goal on Wednesday, Andrei Vasilevskiy will more than likely be back in goal for the Bolts today. Last year Tampa won both games these two teams played by scores of 7-1 and 3-2. The Lightning should definitely win this game today but I’m not laying the juice on them at -210 on the road. I’ll take the Bolts in regulation for half a unit.
Sabres vs. Blackhawks (7:00)
Thursday night the Sabres came back home from their west coast road trip and although they didn’t get the win, losing 3-2 to the Habs on a late third period goal, they played much better than they did on Tuesday night in their 5-1 loss to the Kraken. Buffalo is now 4-3 on the season, but they’ve played well enough so far this season for me to continue to be optimistic about my favorite team. The Sabres are averaging a pretty solid 3.57 goals per game on an average of 29.6 shots on goal per game and they’ve allowed an average of 2.71 goals per game on an average of 36 shots allowed per game. The defense hasn’t been great and they’ve been getting bailed out on good goaltending from Comrie and Anderson. The Blackhawks might be a competitive enough team this season to screw up their tanking plans a bit. They’re 4-3 and coming into tonight’s game off a 6-5 loss to the Oilers on Thursday that ended their four game win streak. Like the Sabres, Chicago’s also scoring an average of 3.57 goals per game on an average of just 26.1 they’ve generated. On the back end, they’ve allowed an average of 3.29 goals per game on an average of 32.7 shots they’ve allowed. Arvid Soderblom is confirmed in goal tonight, making his first start of the season for the Hawks. Last season he was pretty bad in his three games played at the NHL level with a 5.01 GAA and .863 save percentage. Last year Buffalo won both matchup between these teams by a goal each time, winning 6-5 and 3-2. I love the Sabres to win tonight and I’ll take my boys for half a unit along with half a unit on the Sabres TT over 3.5. I like the over in this game too and I’ll add that for half a unit as well.
Red Wings vs. Wild (7:00)
The Wild got off to a disappoint start to their season but with three wins in their last four games including a 4-2 win in Ottawa on Thursday night, they’re now 3-3-1 on the year. Minnesota has been good offensively, averaging 3.71 goals per game, generating an average of 35 shots per game. They’ve struggled on the back end with lousy play from their goaltenders in Fleury and tonight’s confirmed starter Filip Gustavsson (5.06 GAA, .860 save percentage). The Wild have allowed an average of 4.29 goals per game on an average of 33.1 shots allowed per game. Detroit comes into tonight’s game with a 3-2-2 record off a 5-1 blowout loss in Boston on Thursday night and they only have one win in their last five games. The Red Wings have both scored and allowed an average of 3.29 goals per game while getting outshot by an average of 34.53-30.7 per game. Ville Husso has been a big upgrade for them in goal this year and has a 2.75 GAA and .916 save percentage this season. Last year the Wild won both their games against Detroit in high scoring games with 7-4 and 6-5 wins. I’d lean they win again tonight but not enough to bet on them with Gustavsson starting in goal. I’ll take the over for half a unit, expecting both teams to score.
Kings vs. Maple Leafs (7:00)
Of course with me betting on them, the Leafs lost another game that they should’ve won on Thursday night, falling 4-3 in overtime in San Jose. Blow Leafs Blow. Toronto’s now 4-3-1 with their California road trip continuing in LA tonight. The Leafs have both scored and allowed an average of 2.75 goals per game, outshooting their competition by an average of 31.3-27.4. The Kings haven’t been great, coming off a 6-4 loss to the Jets at home on Thursday to drop to 4-5 on the season. Their offense has been fine, averaging 3.44 goals per game on an average of 33.9 shots per game but their goaltending has sucked, allowing a high average of 4.33 goals per game while allowing 31.4 shots per game on average. A far cry from how solid their goalie tandem was last year. Last year these teams split their two games in blowouts in each direction with a 5-1 Kings win and 6-2 Leafs win. I’d lean the Leafs and the over here but not enough to bet on anything in this game. The Leafs are the hardest team in the league to bet on and the best play here is nothing at all.
Flyers vs. Hurricanes (7:00)
Last night the Canes got blown out 6-2 by the Islanders (loss on my under) despite outshooting the Isles 35-32. Carolina’s now 4-2-1 on the season and I think they’re still one of the best teams in the East (along with the Bruins). The Hurricanes have been fine on both ends of the ice. They’re scoring an average of 3.14 goals per game on an average of 36.1 shots on goal and they’ve allowed an average of 2.86 goals per game on an average of 26.7 shots allowed. The Flyers keep surprising people under new head coach John Tortorella. Torts has his boys playing disciplined hockey. They’re averaging 3 goals per game on a 27.1 shot per game average. Carter Hart (2.00 GAA, .947 save percentage) has played out of his mind in goal with Philly allowing an average of 2.43 goals per game while giving up an average of 35.6 shots per game. Last year the Hurricanes won three of the four games they played against Philly in this Metro Division matchup. I’d lean the Canes get a win here to bounce back from their loss last night but at -190 on the road in Philly with how good the Flyers have played lately, I don’t think its worth betting on. I’ll skip this game.
Blues vs. Canadiens (7:00)
The Blues are on a three game losing streak, dropping to 3-3 on the season after back to back losses on Wednesday to the Oilers (3-1) and Thursday to the Preds (6-2). St. Louis has struggled quite a bit offensively, scoring an average of only 2.33 goals per game on an average of 28.8 shots on goal generated. They’ve allowed an average of 3 goals per game on an average of 32.7 shots they’ve given up. Jordan Binnington is confirmed back in goal tonight and has been very good so far this season with a 1.74 GAA and .936 save percentage including a shutout against the Oilers. The Habs are 4-4 this year coming off a 3-2 win against my Sabres on Thursday in a great game where they got outshot 45-34 with Josh Anderson scoring the game winner with just 3:46 left in regulation. Montreal has averaged 2.5 goals per game on an average of 2.88 shots on goal and they’ve allowed an average of 2.88 goals per game on 32.8 shots allowed on average. These cross conference teams split their two games last season with a 4-1 Blues win and 3-2 Canadiens win. I’d expect the Blues to get right and win tonight at home against a pretty weak Habs team but in no way is this team worth betting the -245 moneyline here. I’ll take a shot on the Blues in regulation though for half a unit.
Islanders vs. Avalanche (7:30)
Both of these teams are on the second half of a back to back tonight after being in action last night. The Islanders got outshot 35-32 in Carolina but that didn’t end up mattering as they beat the Canes 6-2 for their second win in a row, improving to 4-4 on the season. New York’s been good on both ends of the ice. They’re averaging 3.5 goals per game on an average of 32 shots per game and allowing an average of 2.5 goals per game on an average of 32.1 shots allowed. The defending Cup champs got shut out 1-0 in a tight game in New Jersey last night. The Avs are now 4-3-1 on the season after that loss. Still feeling a bit of a cup hanging, Colorado is scoring an average of 3 goals this season on an average of 30.5 shots on goal and they’ve allowed an average of 2.75 goals per game on an average of 31.6 shots allowed. The Avalanche got two high scoring wins against the Isles last year, winning 5-3 and 5-4. I still think the Avs are the better team here and think they bounce back from last night’s shutout loss today on the road. Long Island is one of the toughest place for a road team to play in the NHL though and I expect this game to be close enough that I don’t think its worth betting, so I’ll lay off it. I’d lean the under as well but not enough to bet on it.
Predators vs. Capitals (8:00)
After a five game losing streak since returning from their trip to Prague to start the season, the Predators finally got their first win on North American soil of the season with a dominant 6-2 win at home against the Blues on Thursday night, pouring it on with 42 shots on goal and Juuse Saros making 33 saves. Now 3-4-1, the Predators have been decent enough statistically on both ends of the ice so far this season. They’ve scored an average of 2.75 goals per game on an average of 30.5 shots on goal and they’ve allowed an average of 3.13 goals against on an average of 31.5 shots allowed. The Caps are 4-4, coming off a 2-0 shutout loss in Dallas on Thursday night. Ovi and the Washington offense has been pretty efficient, scoring an average of 3.13 goals per game on and average of 28.1 shots per game but their defense hasn’t been as good, allowing an average of 3.25 goals per game on an average of 32.4 shots allowed. The Caps won both games these teams played last season with 5-3 and 4-1 wins. I’d slightly lean the Preds win tonight at home in Smashville but not enough to bet on it with these two teams pretty evenly matched. I do like the over though and I’ll take it for half a unit.
Flames vs. Oilers (10:00)
Some of the most anticipated games of the regular season every year are the Battle of Alberta between the two biggest rivals in the NHL. Tonight they meet for the second time this season after a 4-3 Flames win in Edmonton on October 15th where they outshot the Oilers 42-29, getting out to a 4-1 lead in the first 10:18 of the game and coasting to their win without any goals after that, avenging their five game playoff loss to the Oilers in the second round last season. Calgary’s my pick to win the Stanley Cup this season and they’re 5-1 to start the year with that only loss coming to my Buffalo Sabres. The Flames have been solid on both ends of the ice. They’re scoring an average of 3.67 goals per game on an average of 36.7 shots per game and they’ve allowed an average of 2.83 goals per game on the 27.8 average shots on goal they’ve given up. The Oilers are 5-3, coming into today’s game on a three game win streak. The best player in the world, Connor McDavid has 15 points with an NHL leading eight goals on the season and him, Draisaitl and the Edmonton offense has been very good, averaging 3.88 goals per game on an average of 33.9 shots on goal. They haven’t been as good on the backend though, allowing an average of 3.25 goals per game on an average of 34.1 shots on goal. I think the Flames are the better team in Alberta this season and I’ll take them at home today for half a unit, expecting them to get a win. Additionally, I’ll take the over for half a unit.
Kraken vs. Penguins (10:00)
These two teams are both coming off losses to the Vancouver Canucks, with the Kraken losing 5-4 at home on Thursday night and the Penguins losing 5-1 last night in a much closer game than the score showed, playing a solid game but not enough to beat the Canucks who played easily their best game of the year. Pittsburgh outshot Vancouver 35-29 and looked like the better team at a lot of points in that game but just couldn’t get the puck in the back of the net. That was the Penguins third consecutive loss on their western road trip after losing 6-3 in Edmonton on Monday and 4-1 in Calgary on Tuesday. They come into tonight’s game now with a 4-3-1 record. The Pens veteran lead offense has been very good and even in last night’s loss where they only scored once, they looked good. They’ve averaged 3.88 goals per game, generating an average of 37.8 shots per game. Defensively the Pens have struggled a bit, allowing an average of 3.25 goals per game on an average of 35.9 shots allowed. I’d expect backup Casey DeSmith to get the start tonight since Tristan Jarry started for the Penguins last night. The Kraken are 3-4-2 this season and they’ve improved from last year’s inaugural season but they’re still not fantastic. Their offense has been efficient, averaging 3.33 goals per game on an average of 32.6 shots per game. Their goaltending has continued to be a struggle though and despite their defense allowing an average of just 25.3 shots per game, Seattle has allowed an average of 3.67 goals per game. Last year these teams split their two games with a 6-1 blowout win for the Penguins and a 2-1 overtime win for the Kraken. Pittsburgh’s the better team here despite their three game losing streak. Even though they’re on the second half of a back to back and definitely tired on this west coast road trip, I’ll keep chasing the Pens and at this cheap of a price I think its worth betting them to bounce back tonight in Seattle. I’ll take the Penguins for half a unit
.5u Stars/Rangers under 6 (-120)
.5u Panthers/Senators over 6.5 (-120)
.5u Lightning in regulation (-124)
.5u Sabres ML (-180)
.5u Sabres TT over 3.5 (-122)
.5u Sabres/Blackhawks over 6.5 (-115)
.5u Wild/Red Wings over 6.5 (-110)
.5u Blues in regulation (-150)
.5u Predators/Capitals over 6 (-115)
.5u Flames ML (-143)
.5u Flames/Oilers over 6.5 (-122)
.5u Penguins ML (-115)
Record: 60-55-2 (-11.53 units)
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