Nice day for me yesterday on the NHL, going 9-4 to win 1.42 units. Always good to win. Let’s make it two days in a row with today’s seven game slate.
Sabres vs. Bruins (1:00)
This isn’t a great matchup for my Sabres today. Coming off a pathetic 5-2 loss in Philly on Thursday night, they’ve won just one game in their last seven games to drop to 33-29-6 on the season. The playoff hopes are getting a little bit bleak and they have to start winning. Buffalo has been fantastic offensively this season but they’ve really struggled defensively. Today’s matchup against the Bruins isn’t great for them, even with the B’s in the second half of a back to back after a 5-2 win in Minnesota yeesterday afternoon. Boston’s the best team in the NHL by a significant margin, leading the league with a 52-11-5 record, the first team in the league to clinch a playoff spot, setting a record for the fastest team to 50 wins in NHL history. They’re the best defensive teams in the NHL and the second best offensively. The Bruins are 2-0-1 this season against the Sabres, winning 3-1 in Buffalo on November 12th, losing 4-3 in overtime on December 31st, and then riding a huge third period to a 7-1 win at home on March 2nd. I’d expect Boston to win here but not enough to bet on them. I do like the over though which I’ll take for a unit.
Wild vs. Capitals (2:00)
The Wild are having a great season, coming into today’s game in the second half of a back to back after a 5-2 loss to the Bruins yesterday. They’re 39-22-8 on the season, in third place in the Central Division. Minnesota’s defense has been fantastic all season and somehow their offense has come alive recently, shockingly without Karill the Thrill in the lineup. The Capitals are having a disappointing year with a 33-30-7 record with just five wins in their last 16 games, coming off a pathetic 5-2 loss at home to the Blues on Friday night. They’ve been decent defensively but they’ve struggled offensively all season. The Wild won the first game between these teams 4-2 in Washington on January 17th. Even in the second half of a back to back, I like Minnesota to bounce back with a win today at home and will take them for half a unit along with half a unit on the under.
Golden Knights vs. Blue Jackets (4:00)
This isn’t a great cross-conference matchup between the West leading Golden Knights and the lousy Blue Jackets, one of the worst teams in the league. I broke this game down in depth in my article on StatSalt. Like I said in that article, I’m expected an easy win for the Knights at home today and will take them in regulation for a unit to bounce back from their 7-2 loss at home to the Flames on Thursday. I’d lean the over but not enough to bet it.
Lightning vs. Devils (7:00)
This will be the third game this week between these teams after the Lightning won both games in New Jersey on Tuesday and Thursday. I broke this game down in depth with my article on StatSalt. As I said in that article, I’d lean the Devils win on the road to avoid the season sweep and the over, but not enough to bet on either in what I expect to be a close game.
Rangers vs. Predators (7:00)
This has the potential to be a pretty solid game tonight. The Rangers are on a three game win streak, coming off a big 6-0 blowout win at home against the Penguins yesterday. They’re comfortably in third place in the Metro Division with a 40-19-10 record with a 5-0-1 record in their last six games. The Rags have played great on both ends of the ice. The Preds are in the second half of a back to back tonight as well, coming off a 3-2 overtime loss to the Jets yesterday. They haven’t had a great season and were sellers at the deadline but come into tonight’s game with a 34-25-8 record and have played pretty well recently with an 8-4-2 record in their last 14 games. They’ve been very good defensively, backstopped by Juuse Saros but their offense has sucked. They won’t have Saros today though since he started yesterday against the Jets. Both in the second half of a back to back, both backups are projected to start in goal tonight, neither of which has been great and with that I like the over and will take the alternate over 5.5 for half a unit. I’d lean the Rangers win as well but don’t think they’re worth betting on a -225 with Halak in goal.
Blues vs. Jets (7:00)
This is a pretty huge mismatch in the Central Division. The Jets are having a solid season, in a Wild Card spot in the West with a 39-28-3 record, coming off a 3-2 overtime win in Nashville yesterday. Winnipeg’s played really well defensively this season with one of the best goalies in the league in Connor Hellebuyck and they’re around league average offensively. The Blues are having a very disappointing season and they sold away a lot of their assets at the deadline to contenders. They’re 30-33-5 on the season, coming off a 5-2 win in Washington against the Caps on Friday night. St. Louis has struggled heavily on both ends of the ice, especially defensively. The Jets dominated all three previous games between these teams this season, winning in a 4-0 shutout at home on October 24th, 5-2 on the road on December 8th, and 4-2 at home on January 30th. Even in the second half of a back to back, I like Winnipeg to complete the season sweep on the road tonight. The price is far too cheap on this game. I’ll take the Jets for 1.5 units along with half a unit on the puck line.
Ducks vs. Canucks (8:00)
Not a great Pacific Division matchup to close out tonight’s slate, but it could be an interesting game. The Ducks are right in the Bedard sweepstakes as one of the worst teams in the NHL with a 23-36-10 record, but are coming off a big 7-4 win at home against the Blue Jackets on Thursday. Anaheim’s been statistically one of the worst teams in the league on both ends of the ice. Last night in LA the Canucks got dominated by the Kings but somehow found a way to get a 3-2 win in a shootout (double loser for me), despite getting outshot 40-17. Despite having a pretty terrible season with a 30-33-5 record, they’ve played pretty well recently with six wins in their last seven games and a 9-3-1 record in their last 13. Vancouver’s been pretty good offensively this season but they’ve really struggled on the back end all year. The Canucks won both previous games between these teams this season, winning 8-5 at home on November 3rd and 3-2 in overtime at home on March 8th. I’d slightly lean the Canucks win here on the road even in the second half of a back to back, but no way I’m betting it. I do like the over quite a bit though, and I’ll take the alternate over 6.5 for half a unit.
1u Bruins/Sabres over 6.5 (-125)
.5u Wild ML (-155)
.5u Wild/Capitals under 6 (-110)
1u Golden Knights in regulation (-180)
.5u Rangers/Predators over 5.5 (-136)
1.5u Jets ML (-140)
.5u Jets -1.5 (+190)
.5u Ducks/Canucks over 6.5 (-143)
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: 584-492-23 (-64.63 units)
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