After a slow start, I rallied late to make a nice 2.94 unit profit on yesterday’s ten game NHL slate, going 6-4. Tonight we have another ten game slate tonight with just a few days left in the regular season.
Devils vs. Sabres (7:00)
Coming off a huge 3-2 shootout win on the road against the Rangers, the Sabres kept their playoff hopes alive along with some help from the Isles and Panthers both losing. The Devils look to take first place in the Metro Division as they’re just a point back from the Hurricanes. I broke this game down in depth in my article on StatSalt. As I said in the article, I’d lean the Devils win, especially with the Sabres in the second half of a back-to-back, but not enough to bet against my boys with so much meaning to every point. I’d lean the over as well, but I think the best move for me on this one with the Sabres playoff hopes still alive is to just lay off this game entirely.
Flyers vs. Blue Jackets (7:00)
This matchup is so lousy between two Metro Division teams that have had terrible seasons. I broke it down in depth in my article on StatSalt and as I said in that article, I do still give the Flyers a big edge here, especially in goaltending and will take them for half a unit at home. I’d lean the over as well but not enough to bet it.
Bruins vs. Capitals (7:00)
This game is completely meaningless. The Bruins made history on Sunday night, beating the Flyers 5-3 to officially become the most winning team in a single season of NHL history with their 63rd win, as the Presidents Trophy winners improved to 63-12-5 on the season. They’ve been incredible, extending their win streak to six in a row, with 13 wins in their last 14 games and they have a phenomenal 33-4-3 record on home ice. Boston has the best defense in the NHL and the second best offense in the league, trailing only the Oilers. The Capitals have had a disappointing season, eliminated from playoff contention with a 35-36-9 record. They’re in the second half of a back to back tonight, coming off a 5-2 win at home against the Islanders last night (as a Sabres fan, thank you) which ended their six game losing streak. They have only seven wins in their last 26 games. Washington hasn’t been great on either end of the ice. These teams split their first two games this season both winning on the road, with the Bruins winning 5-2 in Washington on October 12th and the Caps answering back with a 2-1 win in Boston on February 11th. I’d expect the Bruins to win again tonight even though this game doesn’t matter in the slightest, especially with the Caps in the second half of a back-to-back. Its not worth the -335 price nor is it worth the -200 regulation line. I’d slightly lean the under but not enough to bet it. I’ll stay off this game entirely.
Hurricanes vs. Red Wings (7:00)
This is a huge mismatch in the Eastern Conference. The Hurricanes lead the Metro Division with a point lead over the Devils, playing for the first seed in the Division. Coming off a 3-2 loss in Ottawa last night, the Canes are on a three game losing streak. Carolina’s played great on both ends of the ice this season. The Red Wings have had a lousy season, eliminated from playoff contention with a 35-25-10 record. After a 6-1 blowout loss at home against the Stars last night (easy winner for me), they’re on a three game losing streak and they only have seven wins in their last 23 games. Detroit’s struggled on both ends of the ice. These teams split both of their previous games this season in Detroit, with the Canes winning a 1-0 on the road on December 13th and the Red Wings answering back with a 3-2 win at home on March 30th. I’d expect the Hurricanes to win here at home to hold onto their first place spot in the Division (and can clinch the division with a win and a Devils loss against the Sabres). The moneyline is too expensive at -275, but I’ll take the Canes in regulation for half a unit.
Lightning vs. Maple Leafs (7:00)
These teams will meet next week in the first round of the playoffs with the Leafs having second place locked up in the Atlantic and the Bolts with third place locked up in a rematch of last year’s fantastic first round. I’d say this game would be a good preview of that series, but it won’t be even close to the lineups and the quality of play we’ll see a week from now. I’m not gonna even both to break it down in depth, I’ll have a whole blog written up to preview the series matchup this week. For tonight, I like the Bolts to win this one with Vasilevskiy likely starting against Joseph Woll and the Leafs in the second half of a back to back on the road. I’ll take them in regulation for half a unit. I also like the over here which I’ll take for half a unit as well.
Penguins vs. Blackhawks (7:30)
This is such a huge game for the Penguins while being one of the biggest mismatches we’ve seen all season with the price on this game all the way up to -530. The Penguins are a point back from the Isles for the second Wild Card spot in the East with a game in hand. Coming off a big 5-1 win in Detroit on Saturday, they’ve won six of their last ten games (and 14 games) and three of their last four. Pittsburgh’s been good offensively this season but pretty inconsistent defensively. The Blackhawks are one of the worst teams in the NHL, right in the Bedard sweepstakes (although I doubt Gary let’s them win it…rigged) with a 25-49-6 record. Last night at home against the Wild (who sat most of their best players) they shockingly dominated the game but gave up three goals in the last six minutes of regulation to lose 4-2, a huge win for me. With that loss they only have one win in their last twelve games. Chicago’s been awful on both ends of the ice. The Pens won the first game between these cross conference teams on the road on November 20th, winning 5-3. They have to win tonight and especially with the shitty Blackhawks in the second half of a back to back, I don’t see a chance that the Penguins don’t win tonight at home. Obviously the prices on this game are all way too expensive and I’m not taking the moneyline at -530, the regulation line at -286, or the puck line at -190. No fucking way. I will take their team total over 4 for a unit though (partially an emotional hedge for my Sabres, but hopefully the Pens somehow lose 6-5 or something like that).
Wild vs. Jets (8:00)
This is sort of an interesting game. Last night the Wild came through so huge for me. I stupidly didn’t check the lineup for their game against the Blackhawks, not realizing that a bunch of Minnesota’s top players weren’t playing. I pretty much got lucky though as they scored three goals in the last six minutes of regulation to win 4-2 and cashed my big two units left on them to win inside 60 minutes. Minnesota’s on fire lately, one of the hottest teams in the NHL right now with a 18-3-5 record in their last 26 games. They have third place in the Central pretty much locked up, two points back from both the Avs and the Stars, but as we saw by yesterday’s lineup, I don’t think they give a shit to win the division. They’ve been elite defensively all season and although their offense has struggled plenty at points this season, they’ve been good the last month or so even without Karill the thrill in the lineup and although he isn’t playing tonight, he’s expected to make his return this week. This game matters so much more to the Jets though, who just need to get one point to clinch the final Wild Card spot in the West with a three point lead over the Preds. They’re 45-32-3 on the season and coming off a 6-2 win against the Sharks yesterday they have four wins in their last five games. The Jets have been good defensively this year, backstopped by an elite goaltender in Connor Hellebuyck, but their offense has sucked. The Wild have won all three previous games this season between the Central Division teams, winning 6-1 at home on November 23rd, winning 4-1 on the road on December 27th and then 4-2 again in Winnipeg on March 8th. If there was some motivation here for the Wild, I’d expect they’d win at home but on the second half of a back to back with the Jets needing to lock up their spot in the playoffs, I think Winnipeg wins this game and I’ll take them for half a unit for even money.
Avalanche vs. Oilers (9:30)
This should be an awesome game and although both of these fantastic teams have their spots in the playoffs locked up, they’re both playing for their seeding in the playoffs. The Avs needed overtime to get a 5-4 overtime win in Anaheim (which screwed me since I had them in regulation) but extended their win streak to four in a row with 13 wins in their last 15 games. The defending Cup champs lead the Central Division, tied in points with the Stars with a 49-24-6 record. Colorado’s been incredible defensively and pretty good offensively. The Oilers are on fire, trailing the Golden Knights to lead the Western Conference by two points with a 48-23-9 record. After a 6-1 blowout win in San Jose on Saturday night, they’re on a seven game win streak and a 13 game point streak with an 12-0-1 record in that span. Led by the best hockey player in the world in Connor McDavid, who’s running away with every offensive award the league has, Edmonton’s offense is easily the best in the NHL, but their defense and goaltending has been inconsistent at best. The Avs won both previous games between these teams this season, both needing overtime as they won 3-2 in Edmonton on January 7th and then 6-5 at home on February 19th. This is a coin flip of a game to me, as it is with the books who have it priced at a -110 pick ‘em, and I’ll just stay off this side in this one. I’d slightly lean the over, but with the Avs, who have trended under this season trending over recently and the Oilers, who have trended over on the season trending under recently, I’ll just stay off this game entirely. This is 100% the best game on tonight’s slate, without question.
Ducks vs. Canucks (10:00)
Not the best Pacific Division game here. Coming off a 5-4 overtime loss at home to the Avs on Sunday (which screwed me since I had Colorado in regulation) the Ducks are one of the worst teams in the NHL right in the Bedard sweepstakes with a 23-45-12 record, coming into tonight’s game on an almost impressive eleven game losing streak. Anaheim has statistically been one of the worst teams in the NHL on both ends of the ice. The Canucks got shut out 3-0 last night in LA to drop to 36-37-7 on the season, a disappointing year for them. They have been pretty good lately though with a 12-5-2 record in their last 19 games. The Canucks have been good offensively all season, but terrible defensively. Vancouver will look to finish their season sweep tonight after winning each of the previous three games between these teams this year, winning 8-5 at home on November 3rd, winning 3-2 in overtime on March 8th, and 2-1 on the road in Anaheim on March 19th. For most games on tonight’s state the motivation’s been a factor but both of these teams haven’t been playing for anything anyway, so I’m not overthinking this one and will take the Canucks to bounce back from last night’s loss with a win on the road in Anaheim for half a unit. I’d lean the over but not enough to bet it.
Golden Knights vs. Kraken (10:00)
Awesome game in the Pacific Division to close out tonight’s slate. The Golden Knights lead the Western Conference with a 49-22-9 record but still have something to play for with just a two point lead over the Oilers. Coming off a 2-1 shootout loss in Dallas on Saturday, they’re on a six game point streak with a 20-4-5 record since February 7th. They’ve played great on both ends of the ice. The Kraken hold the first Wild Card spot in the West but they could overtake the Kings for third place in the Pacific, coming into tonight’s game with a 46-26-8 record. Last night they extended their win streak to five straight games with six wins in their last seven games with a 4-1 win in Arizona (double winner for me to close out the night). Seattle has been good offensively all season but inconsistent defensively. These teams split their first two games this season, both winning on the road with a 5-2 Knights win in Seattle on October 15th and a 4-2 win for the Kraken in Vegas on November 25th. I’d lean Vegas wins tonight at home with the Kraken in the second half of a back to back but not enough to bet on it. I do like the over though which I’ll take for half a unit.
.5u Flyers ML (-190)
.5u Hurricanes in regulation (-162)
.5u Lightning in regulation (-124)
.5u Lightning/Maple Leafs over 6.5 (-110)
1u Penguins TT over 4 (-157)
.5u Jets ML (+100)
.5u Canucks ML (-150)
.5u Golden Knights/Kraken over 6 (-124)
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: 709-562-29 (-37.52 units)
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