The NHL features 13 games this Thursday as all but eight teams will be in action. One of the biggest games of the night will be in Toronto where the New Jersey Devils will put their 10-game win streak on the line. We also have three late games highlighted by the Rangers, who are out west to take on the surprising Kraken in Seattle. As of now, the Vegas Golden Knights sit as the largest favorites at -390 on DraftKings Sportsbook in their game against the Coyotes. After a nine-game win streak, Vegas has now lost two in a row and will look to right the ship today against Arizona.
The Canadiens are catching the Blue Jackets at an opportune time. Columbus has a multitude of injuries to their star players with Zach Werenski, Patrik Laine and now starting goalie Elvis Merzlikins all on IR. The Canadiens come into this game off a loss to the hottest team in hockey in the Devils, but had scored a total of 17 goals in their four games prior to that contest. Neither of these teams look great when looking at advanced stats but it’s been Montreal’s offense that has been trending better and also ranks out with the more effective power-play unit. Montreal also has a big advantage in net, with Samuel Montembeault slated to start. He sports a .930 save percentage, a 3-1-1 record, and has been the best goalie for Montreal this season. Considering the injuries for Columbus, the play of Monetembeault, and the short-term productiveness of Montreal’s offense, it’s surprising to see the Blue Jackets and Canadiens this close in odds. Take the Canadiens to start a new win streak tonight.
The Flames recently stopped a six-game losing streak and now enter this game against Tampa with wins in each of their last two outings. The Flames needed six goals just to get by Los Angeles in their last game, though, and will face off against a Lightning team who are 5-2-1 in eight home starts this season, with all three losses by just one goal. With that in mind, it seems strange that Tampa, even with a few early-season hiccups, is sitting at just -115 tonight on the money line. The Lightning have been winning of late — despite receiving less than stellar goaltending — and are 5-1 against Calgary (straight up) in the last six meetings between these two teams. Tampa is averaging 4.0 goals per game over eight home starts in 2022 and looks like a solid value on the moneyline today.
The Sharks enter this game on a three-game win streak. Over that period San Jose has outscored opponents 13-8 and has moved out of the league’s cellar in terms of the standard goals scored per game stats. The Sharks have actually been decent at creating chances this season as they rank league average in xGF% at 5v5, and are a surprising fourth overall in High Danger Chances created. The Red Wings lag San Jose in both these categories (ranking out third-worst in high-danger chances) and come in on a three-game losing streak, having been outscored 15-7 over that stretch. The fact we can bet the Sharks straight up on the moneyline in this spot, and still get odds somewhat close to even money, makes them a great target for Thursday.
The Canadiens take on the Blue Jackets today, who are second to last in shots allowed per game. The Blue Jackets have allowed an incredible 117 shots in their last three games and should give players like Nick Suzuki a chance at getting a few more pucks than normal on net today. Suzuki has been up and down in his shot attempts but has averaged just under 2.5 shots per game for the season. The real appeal — outside of the matchup — is the price, as we can get far better than even odds to take the over on a player who is averaging well over 20 shifts per game, and is also likely to see plenty of special teams ice time. The matchup and available odds make Suzuki’s over a solid play tonight.
All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
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