Two bad days in a row for me on the NHL, going an atrocious 1-5-1 yesterday to lose 4.6 units, starting off 1-0-1 and then losing every later game. Tonight we have a nine game slate to get back to the winning ways.
Hurricanes vs. Blues (7:00)
Huge mismatch here in this cross conference game. Carolina’s having an incredible season, leading the way in the Metro Division with a 37-10-8 record. Coming off a dominant 4-1 win in their outdoor Stadium Series game on Saturday against the Capitals, they’re on a three game win streak with just one loss in their last eleven games. They’ve been very good on both ends of the ice, especially defensively. The Blues on the other hand, which already sold away their best players for the future aren’t having a great seeason, coming into tonight’s game with a 26-27-3 record. They had back to back losses over the weekend, losing 7-2 in Ottawa on Sunday and 4-1 at home to the Avs on Saturday. They’ve struggled on both ends of the ice, especially defensively. In the first game between these teams in St. Louis on December 1st, the Hurricanes won 6-4. I expect them to easily win at home again tonight. The moneyline is so expensive at -335 and even the regulation line at -200 is pricey. I will take the Canes TT over 3.5 here for a unit.
Devils vs. Canadiens (7:00)
This is another pretty big mismatch. The Devils are comfortably in second place in the Metro Division with a 37-14-5 record. Coming off back to back wins on the weekend against the Jets (4-2) at home on Sunday and in Pittsburgh (5-2) on Saturday, they’ve gone an impressive 13-2-2 record in their last 17 games. New Jersey’s been really good on both ends of the ice and with Jack Hughes back, that adds a huge spark to their offense. The Habs have had a disappointing season, coming into tonight’s game with 23-29-4 record. After going on a three game win streak, they’ve since gotten blown out in their last two games, losing 5-1 in Toronto on Saturday and 6-2 in Carolina on Thursday. The Canadiens have struggled on both ends of the ice. In the first game between these teams on November 15th, the Devils won in a 5-1 blowout in Montreal. I expect another easy win here for them. Everything is so expensive in this game but I’ll take the Devils puck line for half a unit.
Lightning vs. Ducks (7:00)
To keep the night of complete mismatches going, we have the biggest one here in Tampa with the Ducks coming to town for this cross conference matchup. The Lightning are having yet another awesome season with a 35-17-3 record with a 21-4-2 record at home. They’re comfortably in third place in the Atlantic Division, pretty much locked into another first round matchup against the Leafs. They’ve lost their last two games in a row though, losing 5-4 in a great game in Vegas on Saturday night and in a shootout for a shocking 1-0 loss in a double shutout in Arizona. The Bolts’ offense has been spectacular and although their defense and goaltending hasn’t been as good as the last few years, its still very solid. The Ducks on the other hand, who blew a 2-0 lead to lose 4-3 in overtime in Florida yesterday afternoon for their fifth loss in a row, are one of the worst teams in the NHL this season with a 17-33-7 record. Statistically, they’ve been one of the worst teams in the league on both ends of the ice. In the first game between these teams this season in Anaheim on October 26th, the Lightning won 4-2 on the road. I’d expect an even easier win tonight, likely in a blowout for this game at home, especially with the Ducks in the second half of a back to back. The prices on this game are completely insane with the Bolts at -530 favorites, making the moneyline, regulation line and puck line all entirely out of reach. Even the team total at 4.5 is way too much with the 4 juiced all the way up to -195. I’ll just stay off this game. I even looked at parlays with the Devils and Canes, but the best move is just skipping this one. I’d slightly lean the over but not enough to have to rely on the Ducks to contribute offensively.
Capitals vs. Red Wings (7:00)
I broke this game down in depth with an article on StatSalt. As I said in that article, without Ovi in the lineup, I’d slightly lean the Red Wings win here but not enough to bet it. I do like the under though and will take the alternate under 6.5 in this game for half a unit.
Sabres vs. Maple Leafs (7:30)
This is huge game in Buffalo tonight. The Sabres return home after getting wins in their last two games on the California road trip. The Leafs are coming off a big 5-3 loss to the Blackhawks that completely fucked me for a big double loser on Sunday. I broke down this matchup with an in depth article on StatSalt. Even though I said in that article that I’d lean the Leafs win and that’s the more logical bet here based on the stats, no shot am I betting against my team against the shitbag Maple Leafs. This is a game where you just throw the stats out and just go off feel for me. I’ll take a half unit shot on the Sabres as a home dog here. As I said in the article though, I do like the over a lot, which I’ll take for a unit.
Wild vs. Kings (8:00)
This will be the third and final game of the regular season between these Western Conference teams and although the Kings won both previous games, they did so in entirely different ways. In a high scoring game on October 15th in Minnesota, they won 7-6 and then in LA on November 8th, they won in a very low scoring 1-0 shutout. The Kings have been good this season, currently in second place in a very tight Pacific Division with at 32-18-7 record. Coming off a 6-5 shootout win over the Coyotes at home on Saturday, where they blew a 5-1 first period lead, LA’s on a four game win streak. They’ve played well offensively this season, but have been inconsistent and have struggled at times defensively. The Wild are in the second Wild Card spot in the West with a 30-21-5 record. They’re coming off two wins in a row after Sunday afternoon’s 4-3 win against the Predators (where I lost on the under with two goals in the last 47 seconds of the game) and have gone 3-1-1 in their last five games. Minnesota’s struggled offensively but have been quite good defensively. I’d slightly lean the Kings and the under in this game but not enough to bet on either. I’ll just lay off it.
Predators vs. Canucks (8:00)
This is a pretty boring matchup to me. The Preds are 26-22-6 on the season and after a bit of a decent run, they have just two wins in their last six games. On Sunday afternoon they lost my under in their game against the Wild, as they tied up the game with 47 seconds left before losing 4-3 just 26 seconds later. Nashville’s been good defensively but terrible offensively. The Canucks have been terrible, with a 22-30-4 record on the season and are a mess of an organization. They are coming off a 6-2 win against the Flyers on Saturday, which was just their sixth win in their last 22 games. Vancouver’s been decent offensively but horrendous defensively. The first game between these teams went to a shootout with the Preds winning 4-3 on the road in Vancouver on November 5th. I’d expect them to win in easier fashion tonight at home in Smashville. I’m a bit surprised with the price on this game being just -165, expecting that it would’ve been closer to -200, but I’ll take the Preds for a unit. I’d lean the over but not enough to bet it.
Blackhawks vs. Golden Knights (8:30)
The NHL just has tons of huge mismatches tonight and this one’s no different out in the Western Conference. Coming into tonight’s game on a five game win streak after beating the Lightning in an awesome 5-4 win at home on Saturday night, the Golden Knights are back in first place in the Western Conference with a 34-18-4 record, tied in points with the Stars. The Knights have been pretty good on both ends of the ice, but aren’t in the top of the league in either. The Blackhawks are one of the worst teams in the NHL with an 18-32-5 record but they’ve won their last two games in a row. Patrick Kane will be a healthy scratch tonight and until the deadline for “trade-storyline-related reasons” so his final game in Chicago might have been in their 5-3 win over the Leafs on Sunday night (big double loser for me) where he scored a hat trick and had an assist. If that was his last game there, a hell of a way to cap off an era that saw him and the Blackhawks lift three Stanley Cups. Chicago’s been one of the worst teams in the league statistically on both ends of the ice. Vegas won both prior games this season between these teams with a 1-0 shutout win on October 13th at home and a 4-1 win in Chicago on December 15th. I expect them to easily win on the road again tonight. The moneyline at -286 is way too expensive but I’ll load up with 1.5 units on the Golden Knights in regulation.
Oilers vs. Flyers (9:00)
The Oilers have blown three-goal leads to lose in both of their last two games, losing in OT to the Avalanche and the Rangers. In their last game on Sunday afternoon, they blew 3-0, 4-2, and 5-3 leads in that game, ultimately losing 6-5 in overtime. Now on a four game losing streak, they’ve dropped to 30-19-8 but still hold a Wild Card spot, in fourth place in the tight Pacific Division. With McDavid and Draisaitl leading the way as easily the two best players in the NHL this season, even without much depth behind them, Edmonton has the best offense in the league. They have struggled defensively though, especially lately, giving up an average of 5.5 goals in each of their last four games. The Flyers are horrible this year with a 23-25-10 record but ended a four game losing streak yesterday with their 4-3 win in Calgary. Philly’s been horrible offensively and around league average on the back end. The first game between these teams on February 9th in Philly was an outlier to me, as the Flyers got a 2-1 shootout win at home. I expect Edmonton to answer back and win pretty easily tonight to get off this losing streak, especially with the Flyers in the second half of a back to back, but not enough to even consider laying the -335 or even the -195 regulation line. I’ll take the Oilers team total over 4 in this game for a unit. I like the over as well and will take the alternate over 6.5 in this game for half a unit.
1u Hurricanes TT over 3.5 (-177)
.5u Devils -1.5 (-137)
.5u Capitals/Red Wings under 6.5 (-134)
.5u Sabres ML (+145)
1u Maple Leafs/Sabres over 6.5 (-148)
1u Predators ML (-155)
1.5u Golden Knights in regulation (-177)
1u Oilers TT over 4 (-143)
.5u Oilers/Flyers over 6.5 (-141)
1u Boston Bruins – Stanley Cup Champions (+1000)
1.5u Boston Bruins – Stanley Cup Champions (+1100)
2u Vegas Golden Knights – Stanley Cup Champions (+1200)
1.5u Carolina Hurricanes – Stanley Cup Champions (+1300)
1u New Jersey Devils – Stanley Cup Champions (+1600)
Record: 457-386-15 (-40.64 units)
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