Fantastic night for me on the NHL yesterday, my second winning day in a row as I went 10-3 to win 5.22 units. Today we have a decent nine game slate. Let’s stack up the wins again.
Capitals vs. Rangers (1:00)
This could be a fun game to get the day started. The Rangers have their spot in the playoffs clinched, comfortably in third place in the Metro Division with a 44-21-11 record. They are coming off back to back losses, losing 2-1 to the Devils on Thursday and then 3-2 in overtime against the Sabres on Friday. New York’s played great on both ends of the ice and they will have last year’s Vezina goaltender Igor Shesterkin back in goal today after he had Friday night off. The Caps have been disappointing this year and will be missing the playoffs with a 34-33-9 record coming into today. They’re on a three game losing streak after a 5-1 loss in Tampa on Thursday night with just one win in their last seven games. Washington’s played well defensively this season but they’ve really struggled to score. The Capitals are 2-1 against the Rags this year despite having a less successful season, winning in a 4-0 shutout in NY on December 27th and getting a 6-3 win at home on February 25th before the Rangers answered back with a 5-3 victory on home ice on March 14th. I like the Rags to win on the road here today to tie up the season series and will take them for half a unit. I’d slightly lean the over but not enough to bet it.
Blues vs. Bruins (3:30)
This isn’t a great cross-conference matchup whatsoever between the two teams that met in the Cup Finals in 2019. There’s a huge talent discrepancy now a few years later though. The Bruins really have nothing to play for besides the record books, as they’ve already clinched the President’s Trophy with the best regular season record in the league, coming into today’s game with a 59-12-5 record. Yesterday they beat the Penguins 4-3 on the road in Pittsburgh and they have just one loss in their last ten games. Boston has the best defense in the NHL and the second best offense. The problem from now till the end of the season with them though is the motivation vs. the rest. Against Carolina last Sunday, they left their entire first line at home and still won. They’ll have a relatively easy matchup today going up against the Blues. Yesterday St. Louis got blown out 6-1 in Nashville to drop to 35-35-6 on the season but they have been relatively hot recently, with a 6-2-1 record in last nine games. They’ve been good offensively but their defense and goaltending has been terrible this season. In Boston in the first game between these teams this season on November 7th, the Bruins won 3-1. I’d expect another win from them today on the road. The moneyline is too expensive for me at -220, but I’ll take the B’s in regulation for half a unit along with their team total for half a unit. I’d lean the over on the game, but not enough to bet it.
Hurricanes vs. Islanders (6:00)
I’m expecting this to be a fun matchup in Carolina between two playoff teams in the Metro Division. The Hurricanes are currently in first place in the division, with their spot clinched in the playoffs with a 48-18-9 record, but playing for that first seed in the Metro with a point lead over the Devils. Yesterday they ended a three game losing streak with a 3-0 shutout win in Montreal. Carolina’s played well on both ends of the ice this year, especially defensively as one of the best teams in the NHL with elite play on the back end. The Islanders hold the first Wild Card spot in the East with a 39-29-9 record. Although they’re coming off a 5-0 shutout loss in Tampa last night, they’ve played well recently with a 5-2-1 record in their last eight games. The Isles have been very good defensively as well but their offense has been pathetic for most of the year. Carolina leads the season series between these teams (who very well might meet in the first round), losing 6-2 in the first game at home on October 28th but answering back with a 3-0 shutout win on Long Island on December 10th and a 5-2 win on the road on January 21st. The Canes are the much better and more well rounded team in this matchup and I expect them to win at home today. I’ll take them for half a unit. I’d lean the under as well, but with the total set at 5.5, I don’t see much value to betting it, especially with both teams in the second half of a back-to-back after playing yesterday.
Blue Jackets vs. Senators (6:00)
This isn’t a great matchup. The Blue Jackets are one of the worst teams in the NHL, right in the Bedard sweepstakes with a 23-44-8 record and coming into tonight’s game on a four game losing streak after getting blown out 7-0 last night by the Panthers (triple winner for me). Columbus has just three wins in their last 14 games and they have have played horribly on both ends of the ice this year. The Senators are coming off a 3-0 shutout loss at home to the Leafs yesterday to drop to 37-34-5 on the season. They have three wins in their last six games, which were their only three wins in their last eleven. Ottawa hasn’t been great on either end of the ice this season, but they’re significantly better than the Jackets are both offensively and defensively. The Sens won both prior games between these teams this season easily at home, winning 4-0 in a shutout on January 3rd and 5-2 on March 4th. I’d expect them to complete the season sweep on the road tonight and will take them for a unit. I’d lean the over but not enough to bet it.
Penguins vs. Flyers (6:00)
It’s always a fun game when these two Pennsylvania rivals face off. With their 4-3 loss yesterday afternoon at home against the Bruins and Florida’s win, the Penguins fell out of a Wild Card spot, now a point back from the Panthers with a 37-29-10 record. They’ve played poorly recently, with just three wins in their last ten games. Pittsburgh’s been decent, but inconsistent on both ends of the ice this year. The Flyers have had a disappointing year, already eliminated from playoff contention, coming into tonight’s game with a 29-33-13 record. Last night at home they lost 6-3 to the Sabres, their second loss in a row after going on a four game win streak prior to those two losses. Philly’s played pretty poorly on both ends of the ice this year, especially offensively. The rivalry games between these teams this year haven’t had much luster to them, as the Pens won both previous games easily, winning 4-1 in Philly on November 25th and then 5-1 at home on March 11th. I expect them to complete the season sweep at home today and will take them in regulation for a unit. I’d slightly lean the over but not enough to bet it.
Jets vs. Devils (7:00)
This could be a pretty fun game tonight as those two points hold plenty of meaning to both of these teams. The Jets are still hanging on to the second Wild Card spot in the West with a 42-31-3 record, with a two point lead over the Calgary Flames. Coming off a 6-2 win at home against the Red Wings on Friday night, they’ve won just seven of their last 19 games. Not a good way to go into the playoffs, that’s for sure. Winnipeg’s been good defensively this year, backstopped by an elite goaltender in Connor Hellebuyck, but their offense has sucked. The Devils are having a fantastic season, with their spot in the playoffs already clinched, just a point behind Carolina for the division lead with a 48-20-8 record. They’re coming off an easy 6-3 win in Chicago last night, their third win in their last four games. New Jersey’s played fantastic hockey on both ends of the ice this season. The Devils won the first game between these teams 4-2 at home on February 19th. The Devils are the better, more well rounded team in this game and I expect them to win again on the road tonight, even in the second half of a back to back. I’ll take them for half a unit. I’d lean the under but not enough to bet it.
Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings (7:00)
I broke down this Atlantic Division matchup in depth in my article on StatSalt. As I said in that article, I like the Leafs to win at home tonight, even in the second half of a back-to-back. The moneyline is too expensive for me at -286, but I’ll take them in regulation for a unit. I’d slightly lean the under but not enough to bet it.
Canucks vs. Kings (8:00)
This should be a very fun game in the Pacific Division as both of these teams have played really well recently. I broke this game down in depth in my article on StatSalt. As I said in that article, I’d lean the Kings win tonight on second half of a back-to-back but not enough to bet it. I do like the over though, and I’ll take the alternate over 6 in this game for half a unit.
Flames vs. Ducks (8:00)
To close out the slate we have a big mismatch in the Pacific Division. The Flames are having a disappointing season with just a 35-26-15 record, but their playoff hopes are still alive as they find themselves just two points back from the Jets for the second Wild Card spot in the West. They come into tonight’s game on a three game win streak after a 5-4 win in overtime in Vancouver on Friday night (easy over for me). Calgary has been a bit below average on both ends of the ice. The Ducks are one of the worst teams in the NHL, right in the Bedard sweepstakes with a 23-43-10 record. They’re in the second half of a back-to-back tonight, coming off a 6-0 shutout loss in Edmonton last night that extended their losing streak to seven straight games. Anaheim has statistically been one of the worst teams in the NHL on both ends of the ice. The Flames are 2-1 against the Ducks this year, winning 3-2 in overtime in Anaheim on December 23rd, losing 3-1 at home on March 10th and answering back 5-1 at home on March 21st. Especially with the Ducks in the second half of a back to back, I’m expecting another easy win here for Calgary at home. The prices on this game though are so friggin high that you can’t even bet it. Moneyline at -625, regulation line at -315, puck line at -190…no thanks. I’ll just stay off this game completely.
.5u Rangers ML (-135)
.5u Bruins in regulation (-134)
.5u Bruins TT over 3.5 (-132)
.5u Hurricanes ML (-180)
1u Senators ML (-180)
1u Penguins in regulation (-139)
.5u Devils ML (-110)
1u Maple Leafs in regulation (-167)
.5u Kings/Canucks over 6 (-130)
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)
.5u Minnesota Wild – Stanley Cup Champions (+2000)
1u Minnesota Wild – Western Conference Champions (+800)
Record: 661-537-27 (-51.97 units)
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