Came a few goals short on a few games yesterday to go 8-8 on the NHL but lose 1.58 units. Today we have a pretty good seven game Sunday slate. Let’s get after it!
Sabres vs. Capitals (1:00)
My Sabres find themselves in a playoff spot after huge back-to-back wins in the state of Florida on Thursday and Friday. They’ll look to continue with another huge matchup at home against the Capitals today. I broke this game down in depth on StatSalt. As I said in that article, with the Caps in the second half of a back-to-back, I like my Sabres to win today at home and will take them for half a unit. I’d lean the over as well but not enough to bet it. It got announced that Alex Tuch got put on the IR last night, which I don’t love for the Sabres season trajectory, but they should still win today.
Wild vs. Blue Jackets (2:00)
I broke this game down in depth in my article on StatSalt. Especially with the Blue Jackets in the second half of a back-to-back after their win against the Oilers yesterday, I expect the Wild to win here. The moneyline is way too expensive but I’ll take Minnesota in regulation for a unit. I’d lean the under but not enough to bet it.
Jets vs. Islanders (3:30)
These teams just played each other four days ago and it was as low scoring as I expected, easily hitting the under with a 2-1 Islanders win on Long Island. The Jets are having a great season, currently in third place in the Central Division with a 35-23-1 record. They have struggled recently though with just one win in their last five games. They’re coming off a 5-1 loss at home to the Avalance on Friday, that shockingly pushed my under that I thought was dead with five goals in the first period. Winnipeg’s been pretty good on both ends of the ice this season, especially defensively, backstopped by one of the best goaltenders in the league in Connor Hellebuyck. The Islanders are coming off a 3-2 loss to the Kings on Friday, falling short of the comeback. They’re in the Wild Card mix in the East with a 30-25-7 record and have three wins in their last five games, picking up at least a point in nine of their last twelve games. Their offense has struggled this season but like Winnipeg, the Isles are elite defensively with Ilya Sorokin in goal. I like the Jets to win on home ice today and will take them for half a unit. The play I really like here though is the under, which I’ll take for a unit, even at just 5.5.
Rangers vs. Kings (5:00)
These cross-conference teams are both having solid seasons, both in playoff spots. The Rangers are in third place in the Metro with a 33-17-9 record but have cooled off recently. In the second half of a back to back today after a 6-3 loss in Washington yesterday, the Rags are on a four game losing streak. New York’s played really well on both ends of the ice this season though and after Jaro Halak started in goal yesterday afternoon, they’ll have Igor Shesterkin back between the pipes tonight. The Kings are in second place in the tight Pacific Division with a 33-19-9 record. Coming off a 3-2 win on Long Island on Friday, they’ve gone 5-1-1 in their last seven games with an 8-2-2 record in their last twelve. LA’s been really solid offensively this season but they’ve been inconsistent at best on the back end. The Rags won the first game between these teams 5-3 in LA on November 22nd. If they weren’t in the second half of a back to back and in a slump, I’d expect them to win today. I’d still lean they do, but not enough to bet on it. I do like the over though which I’ll take for a unit.
Penguins vs. Lightning (6:00)
Both of these Eastern Conference teams are in the second half of a back-to-back after wins yesterday. The Penguins dominated their game yesterday in St. Louis, outshooting the Blues 48-27 and they were finally able to solve Jordan Binnington late to get a 3-2 win in overtime. That win ended a four game losing streak for the Pens to improve them to 28-21-9 on the season and puts them on the outside, looking in on a Wild Card spot. Pittsburgh’s been decent offensively this season but they’ve been very inconsistent on the back end. The Lightning got a dominant 3-0 win in Detroit last night to bounce back from their 6-5 overtime loss to the Sabres on Thursday. The Bolts are pretty much locked into a first round matchup in the playoffs against the Leafs again, comfortably in third place in the Atlantic with a 37-17-4 record. They’ve been elite offensively once again this season and even though they’ve taken a slight step back from their incredible defense and goaltending from the past several years, they’re still fantastic on the back end. Back on October 15th in the first game these teams played this season, the Penguins got a big 6-2 win at home. I like the Bolts to answer back to get a win here in what should be a fun game and will take them for half a unit along with the over for half a unit.
Kraken vs. Maples Leafs (7:00)
This is a really interesting cross-conference matchup. I broke it down in depth in my article on StatSalt. As I said in that article, I like the Leafs to win on the road tonight and will take them for half a unit. I’d slightly lean the under just based on the stats backing it up, but not enough to bet on either side of the total since my gut tells me this game goes over.
Coyotes vs. Predators (7:00)
Interesting Central Division game to close out today’s slate. Of course when I jumped on the Yotes +1.5 on Wednesday night their nine game point streak came to an end with a 6-3 loss to the Flames at home. That drops them to 20-29-9 on the season and back into the Bedard sweepstakes, that I’m sure their GM wasn’t thrilled the team looked to be playing their way out of. Statistically Arizona’s been one of the worst teams in the NHL on both ends of the ice but as evidenced by that point streak, they keep games close and aren’t an easy out for their opponents. The Predators are on a good run right now. Coming off a 6-2 win in San Jose on Thursday, they’ve won nine of their last 14 games to improve to 28-22-6 on the season. With Juuse Saros in goal, they’ve been a really good defensive team this year but they’ve failed to generate much offense. These teams split their two previous games this season in Nashville with a 4-3 shootout win for the Predators at home on November 21st and the Coyotes answering back with a 4-2 win on the road on February 13th. Although I expect the Yotes to keep it close at the Mullett tonight, the Preds should win tonight. I’ll take them for half a unit.
.5u Sabres ML (-125)
1u Wild in regulation (-162)
.5u Jets ML (-145)
1u Jets/Islanders under 5.5 (-125)
1u Rangers/Kings over 6 (-110)
.5u Lightning ML (-110)
.5u Lightning/Penguins over 6.5 (-125)
.5u Maple Leafs ML (-150)
.5u Predators ML (-170)
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 York Rangers – Stanley Cup Champions (+1300)
1u New Jersey Devils – Stanley Cup Champions (+1600)
Record: 482-409-17 (-45.48 units)
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