NHL betting trends, odds and predictions for Monday, November 20th, 2017 from various handicappers and websites
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Arizona won five of last six games with Toronto; road team won four of those six games. Under is 7-2 in last nine series games. Coyotes won consecutive games for first time this year, but they are still 3-11 on road. Seven of their last eight games stayed under the total. Maple Leafs won their last six games, posting shutouts in last two; under is 3-0-1 in their last four games. Toronto won its last four home games.
Calgary-Washington split their last eight games; road team won five of last seven meetings. Flames lost four of last six games in this building. Three of last four series games stayed under the total. Calgary won six of its last eight games; they’re 5-3 on road. Flames’ last six games went over the total. Caps won their last five home games, are 6-3 in last nine overall; under is 6-2 in their last eight games.
Columbus won four of last five games with Buffalo; they split last four visits to western New York. Over is 6-3 in last nine series games. Blue Jackets won their last three games overall, split their last six road tilts, 2-0/2-1/2-1; their last five games stayed under. Sabres lost their last five games, scoring eight goals; under is 5-1 in their last six games. Buffalo lost three of its last four home games.
Predators won four of last six games with Winnipeg; over is 4-2-1 in last seven series games. Jets lost three of last five visits to Nashville. Winnipeg won its last four games, allowing six goals; they won three of last four road games. Under is 3-1 in Jets’ last four games. Nashville won six of last seven games overall, three in row at home; six of their last seven games went over the total.
Devils won six of their last seven games with Minnesota; they won 4-3/2-1 in last two visits to the Twin Cities. Over is 5-5 in last ten series games. New Jersey lost six of last eight games overall, four of last five on road; four of their last six games stayed under. Minnesota won four of last five games overall, three of last four at home; four of their last five games stayed under the total.
Ducks won six of their last games with San Jose; they split last six games in the Shark Tank. Under is 6-0-4 in last ten series games. Anaheim won three of its last four games, all at home; they’re 3-3 on the road. Three of their last four games stayed under the total. San Jose lost 3-1/2-0 in their last two games; they lost three of last four home games. Under is 9-1 in their last ten games overall.
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NHL Picks and Betting Tips
By Parker Michaels
MORNING LINE REPORT
We almost got away with it. Until we didn’t. After praising the Detroit Red Wings in yesterday’s preview it looked like they would make us proud as they carried a 3-1 lead into the final eight minutes of the third period. A Nail Yakupov powerplay goal cut it to one and then Carl Soderberg of all guys tied the game with just 46 seconds to play in regulation. Nathan MacKinnon sealed our fate in overtime and it was a crushing defeat not just because we had a comfortable lead but because we had to lay 80 cents with the Detroit Red Wings. Yuck.
My inability to get the article up early enough yesterday cost us a pretty penny, as well. The Wings were locked in as a -157 play when I had completed things but it was about an hour later before I was able to finally get it posted on the site here. We switched gears a bit and Adam is showing me how to post this myself moving forward and I had a couple of difficulties with the first attempt yesterday. The bugs should be worked out now and things should be smoother. Adam has always done a fantastic job getting this posted every morning but hopefully this will save a few minutes each day which will close that window from the time I submit the article to when it’s posted which has caused us some lost pennies with line moves.
I added the Ducks as a play yesterday once I found out Vrbata was doubtful and Gibson was expected in net and that limited an otherwise stinker of a day that finished 2-3 but was nearly a two unit loss thanks to the juicy Wings.
We’ve got six games tonight but the lines are pretty tight so it’s going to be a light night. I’m not expecting any additions except possibly the under in San Jose if Gibson somehow gets the call again on the back-to-back.
ARIZONA COYOTES @ TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS
Arizona – Antti Raanta/Scott Wedgewood (unknown)
Toronto – Frederik Andersen (expected)
Arizona – Chychrun (out), Hjalmarsson (likely)
Toronto – no significant injuries
The Arizona Coyotes have won back-to-back games for the first time this season after Saturday’s 3-2 overtime win at Ottawa on the back on an Anthony Duclair hat trick. The Coyotes wrap up their four game road trip tonight and results are finally starting to show for a team that has been playing a lot better than their record suggests.
I mentioned Arizona would be a strong play-on team after they wrapped up a brutal stretch of their schedule that saw them play 11 games in 19 days. Since that ended, the Coyotes have won two of three and will return home for three in a row after tonight for what looks like some good spots to continue backing them.
Arizona assigned defenseman Dakota Mermis back to the AHL on Sunday which means Niklas Hjalmarsson is likely ready to be activated today and return to the lineup tonight. He’ll be a big boost for the Coyotes defense who have been showing improvement lately.
The Toronto Maple Leafs have won six in a row and will try to win seven tonight for the first time since 2003. After a tight start on Saturday night, the Leafs blew the doors off the Canadiens in a 6-0 rout.
Auston Matthews will play his 100th career regular season game tonight and he’ll get to do it against his hometown team. Matthews returned to the lineup on Saturday night and although he didn’t look like his usual powerful self, he scored two goals. Those two goals were both set up by Mitch Marner who fans were elated to see on a line with Matthews. After a slow start, Babcock threw his lines in a blender for the second period and Matthews found himself with Marner and Matt Martin. It was an interesting combo but don’t get used to it as Babcock said he’ll go back to his original lines again to begin tonight’s game.
The Leafs recent run has been a little different than the run to begin the season. The current streak has been a better defensive effort as Toronto has allowed just eight goals over the last six games, including back-to-back shutouts for Frederik Andersen who has looked incredibly sharp. Andersen got off to a tough start this year but if the Leafs hope to do anything in the playoffs they’ll need him to keep up his current level of play. However, Andersen currently leads the league in minutes played so they’re going to have to find a way to get him some rest. Curtis McElhinney hasn’t been great in his limited action and if there isn’t enough faith in him, maybe it’s time to get Garret Sparks or Calvin Pickard up here. Both goalies have been on an excellent run with the Marlies in the AHL. Sparks is 8-2 with a .947 save percentage and Pickard is 4-2 at .924.
The Leafs are a hefty favorite tonight but I think this number looks okay. This line is at the high end of my range so I would expect it to drop some so if you like Arizona I would bet them early and if you want to bet the Leafs I would wait until later today.
CALGARY FLAMES @ WASHINGTON CAPITALS
Calgary – Mike Smith (expected)
Washington – Braden Holtby (expected)
Calgary – no significant injuries
Washington – Burakovsky (out), Djoos (questionable)
The Calgary Flames continue their six game road trip after Saturday afternoon’s 5-4 overtime win at Philadelphia. Sean Monahan sparked the come-from-behind win with his first career hat trick and Johnny Gaudreau chipped in another three point effort. Gaudreau now has 29 points in 19 games to sit alone in third for the NHL scoring lead and is on a career-high nine game points streak.
With the short trip from Philly to D.C. for tonight’s game, the Flames decided to take the train but this wasn’t just any regular train ride. Players were dressed to the nines in a 1950s theme ride which included some pretty cool hats. Flames players were dressed in 50s attire including fedoras, bowlers and Stetsons. It was a pretty cool scene and worth noting because something like this is a great team-building moment which can really propel a team on a run.
Matthew Tkachuk will return to the lineup after his one game suspension.
The Washington Capitals continued their recent dominance on home ice with their fifth straight victory at Capital One Arena after Saturday’s 3-1 win over Minnesota. The Capitals received a complete 60-minute effort from everyone in the lineup and looked the best I’ve seen them all season.
The Capitals scored twice on the powerplay and have six extra man tallies over the last five games. With the Flames league-worst penalty kill coming to town, the Caps powerplay could be the difference in what should be a similarly tight game to their first meeting, a 2-1 Calgary win back in Alberta at the end of October.
I wish Calgary was playing anyone but Washington tonight because I think they’re worth backing but the Caps are playing too well at home and are finally mostly healthy. This line is a shade high but not enough to come in on the Flames and I think I’d be more inclined to lean the Caps here anyway. This could be the best game of the night and will likely have my viewing attention but we’ll stay away from any action.
COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS @ BUFFALO SABRES
Columbus – Sergei Bobrovsky (expected)
Buffalo – Robin Lehner (expected)
Columbus – Calvert (out), Wennberg (doubtful)
Buffalo – Josefson (out), Bogosian (out), Ristolainen (out)
The Columbus Blue Jackets have won three in a row thanks to the superb goaltending of Sergei Bobrovsky but the offense continues to sputter along. The Jackets have scored two or fewer goals in five straight games after Friday’s 2-0 shutout of the Rangers and half of their twelve wins have had to come in overtime or a shootout.
Tortorella called out several of his veterans including Artemi Panarin, Nick Foligno and Cam Atkinson after yesterday’s practice, going as far to say that Foligno would be a healthy scratch if they had more healthy forwards. One guy who was a healthy scratch last game was defenseman David Savard which came as a complete shock to the veteran. Savard is half of the Jackets dominant shutdown pair with Jack Johnson but Tortorella was unhappy with his play recently saying he’s looked slow. Message received by Savard who was back beside Johnson at practice yesterday.
Alexander Wennberg was unable to practice again yesterday and is unlikely to suit up tonight. Bobrovsky hasn’t been confirmed but Tortorella hinted that he would be tonight’s starter.
The Buffalo Sabres have lost five in a row (0-3-2) after another lackluster effort in Saturday’s 3-1 defeat to Carolina. The Sabres went over 17 minutes to begin the game before recording their first shot on goal and have looked like a complete train wreck lately.
Jack Eichel signed a huge contract and now doesn’t look like he cares out there. His lack of hustle on the backcheck is starting to become all too common and something fans are getting sick of watching.
Columbus easily handled Buffalo 5-1 back at the end of October and while things shouldn’t be as easy on the road, I’d expect the Jackets to get another two points tonight. This line is considerably short and I’d expect it to be bet up. We’ll try to get on Columbus early at what is a really good number at -159.
WINNIPEG JETS @ NASHVILLE PREDATORS
Winnipeg – Connor Hellebuyck (likely)
Nashville – Pekka Rinne (expected)
Winnipeg – Enstrom (out)
Nashville – Hartnell (out), Ellis (out), Weber (out)
The Winnipeg Jets continue to defy (my) expectations after yet another dominating performance in Saturday’s 5-2 win over New Jersey. The Jets are now 8-1-1 over their last ten games and are starting to get contributions throughout their lineup. They’ll begin a four game road trip that will see them head to California after the stop in Nashville tonight.
The biggest issue (and really only issue I’ve had with them) is the lack of talent in their bottom-six. The Jets top two lines can hang with any team in the league but the gap in talent between them and the bottom-six is a tremendous leap. The return of Mathieu Perreault two games ago however has created a much different look on the fourth line. Matt Hendricks, Joel Armia and Perreault combined for two goals and four assists against the Devils and has suddenly given the Jets better depth. Perreault is a top-six winger but the strong play by rookie Kyle Connor this season has earned him the trust of Maurice to keep him on the top line with Scheifele and Wheeler for now.
The Jets lost defenseman Toby Enstrom for eight weeks with an injury sustained last game. He’s a veteran guy and the Jets look to him for experience but this really isn’t a huge loss for them as Enstrom had only two assists in 19 games and is only fifth on the Jets blueline in average ice-time. Prospect Tucker Poolman was called up and he or Ben Chiarot will draw into Enstrom’s spot.
The Nashville Predators are almost as hot as the Jets having won six of their last seven games after Saturday’s 5-2 victory over Colorado. The one thing plaguing the Predators is their lack of discipline as they continue to be the most penalized team in the league – and by a significantly wide margin. The Predators spent 11 minutes on the penalty kill in the first period alone against the Avs. Two of those penalties were for too many men on the ice which is often more a lack of team focus and a higher cause for concern. It’s easily correctable but the coach needs to get his players heads in the game more.
Depth forward Auston Watson was suspended for two games after a major boarding penalty in Saturday’s game.
I’m slowly coming around on the Jets but heading into Nashville is always a tough task. This should be the other must-watch game tonight and at least it starts an hour later than Flames/Capitals. The line looks right on here and I wouldn’t expect a swing in the betting line although one thing to note is I think the Preds have a huge look-ahead spot with Montreal coming to town on Wednesday. That’s going to be a huge game for P.K. Subban and his teammates are going to want to win that one for him so I might look at the Jets here if we can get some value later in the day.
NEW JERSEY DEVILS @ MINNESOTA WILD
New Jersey – Cory Schneider/Keith Kinkaid (unknown)
Minnesota – Devan Dubnyk (expected)
New Jersey – Johansson (out)
Minnesota – Parise (out), Coyle (out)
The New Jersey Devils have lost two in a row and six of their last eight (2-4-2) after a disappointing effort in Saturday’s 5-2 loss at Winnipeg. The Devils looked all kinds of out of sorts and Hynes has seen enough recent troubles to facilitate a change.
Practice lines were shaken up yesterday with the exception of the top line of Hischier, Hall and Palmieri who continue to hum along. Pavel Zacha, a healthy scratch in four of the last five games, was inserted onto the second line in place of Drew Stafford who was dropped to the third line. Adam Henrique has gone from centering the second line to playing on the third to now a full demotion to the fourth line. Henrique has 50 goals over the past two seasons for the Devils but has just three this year in 19 games and is pointless overall in his last four.
Hynes said he wasn’t ready to announce a starter in net for tonight so we’ll keep an eye on that today to see if Kinkaid draws in.
The Minnesota Wild’s four game win streak was snapped with Saturday’s 3-1 loss at Washington. Backup Alex Stalock was solid in net but the Caps were just the better overall team on that day.
Charlie Coyle is nearing a return but it won’t be this week. Coyle was supposed to return to practice yesterday but Boudreau canceled Sunday’s practice to rest his guys as they’re in the middle of a tough eight games in 14 day stretch. The target date for Coyle’s return to game action appears to be next Monday in Winnipeg.
This is another line that looks right today so unless Kinkaid gets the start we’ll sit this one out.
ANAHEIM DUCKS @ SAN JOSE SHARKS
Anaheim – Reto Berra (likely)
San Jose – Martin Jones (expected)
Anaheim – Kesler (out), Eaves (out), Getzlaf (out), Kase (out), Fowler (out)
San Jose – Martin (doubtful)
The Anaheim Ducks received a 50-save effort from John Gibson in last night’s 3-2 victory over the visiting Panthers, including a herculean 24 saves in the third period. The Ducks have won three of four but it certainly hasn’t been the most impressive efforts. Gibson has been absolutely brilliant and flat-out stolen recent wins for a Ducks team that has been completely outplayed in most areas.
The Ducks play five games over the next seven days and with Ryan Miller not quite ready to return, it seems like we should likely see Reto Berra make his first start of the season today, especially considering how busy Gibson was last night, and that changes everything for this game. We cashed a rare under play when these two teams meet on November 4th in an easy 2-1 win for the Sharks in San Jose.
The San Jose Sharks have dropped the first two games in their three game homestand after a deflating 3-1 loss to Boston on Saturday night. To say the Sharks dominated the entire game would be an understatement. After having two goals disallowed in Thursday’s 2-0 loss to Florida, the Sharks thought they had an early lead just 1:02 into Saturday’s game but video review said no goal as the puck went in off a glove they felt was punched in. The Sharks continued the onslaught as they held an 86-47 shot attempt advantage overall.
San Jose doesn’t currently have any forwards on the injury list but it became known last week that Joe Thornton isn’t playing at full health and yesterday it was also revealed Joe Pavelski is currently playing with an unspecified injury. Pavelski is expected to be in the lineup again tonight but with just four goals and four assists in the first 18 games, the captain is off to his slowest start in ten years. His next goal will be his 300th for his career.
I’m expecting Berra to get the start tonight but if Gibson gets the call we’ll look to jump on the under again, especially if another 5.5 is hung. With Berra in net we’ll likely stay away from this game altogether.
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