This Thursday’s slate has 12 games on the docket for us to choose from. The biggest favorite is the Tampa Bay Lightning who are -325 favorites at home on the DraftKings Sportsbook, hosting the last-place Columbus Blue Jackets. Despite that lopsided line, there are plenty of competitive games on the slate. Three games have money line odds with both sides hovering in the -120 to +100 range. From a scheduling perspective, there’s only one team on the slate today who played last night. The Montreal Canadiens lost 3-2 to the Ottawa Senators yesterday and now host the Anaheim Ducks (who were blown out 7-0 in their last game). The picks for tonight are below.
Hurricanes to win in regulation -120
This will be the first home game for the Hurricanes in over six starts and they’ve been resting in their own beds waiting for the Kraken since Tuesday. Carolina has been one of the best teams in the league over the past week landing points in eight straight games and allowing just 2.6 goals against per game this year. Pyotr Kochetkov is likely to start in net today and he’ll enter this game having not allowed a single goal in his last two outings.
On the flip side, the Martin Jones regression has seemingly kicked in as the Kraken starter has now allowed four or more goals in four of his last five starts. He’ll face off against a Hurricanes offense that has plenty of positive regression potential as they rank second as a team in xGF% (expected goal for percentage), but somehow rank sixth-worst in goals scored per game. This is a tough spot for the Kraken who looked thoroughly outmatched by another East powerhouse in Tampa Bay two nights ago. They’ll face similar issues tonight against Carolina who look like solid bets to take care of business in regulation today at very decent odds.
Oilers Puck Line -1.5 (+145)
The Oilers come into this game off a solid 6-3 win over the Predators. The team has played extremely well over their last six games, going 4-2 over that span with their two losses being close one-goal battles. Tonight they get a Blues team who is also coming off a win over the Predators (from Monday) but have struggled to gain consistency all season. Not only have they lost five of their last seven games, the Blues have also allowed four or more goals in that span.
The odds in this game aren’t giving Edmonton enough credit. The Oilers have received solid goaltending of late from Stuart Skinner, who has posted save percentages of .933 or better in three of his last four starts and will likely be in net tonight. They’ve also covered the puck line in each of their last four wins and will be facing off against a Blues team who has allowed the second-most quality scoring chances and fourth-most high-danger chances this year. Expect Edmonton to capitalize eventually on a shoddy Blues defense and roll to a multiple-goal win.
The Avalanche take on a Sabres team today who allow 32.3 shots against per game, the 12th-highest mark in the NHL this year. Colorado is without plenty of key players up front — including center Nathan MacKinnon — and his minutes have gone to the well-rounded Lehkonen who has taken 28 shifts in each of the last two games. Lehkonen has gone under 2.5 SOG total in three straight games but had landed three or more shots on net in five of six games before that. The fact we’re getting plus odds in a game where he seems locked in for well over 20 minutes of ice time — against a team that allows plenty of shots through every night — makes this a good slate to take him to the over.
This feels like a great time to jump in on some future odds for the Penguins, who have been winning convincingly as of late but haven’t been getting a ton of attention for it. Pittsburgh has now won six games in a row and gotten points in seven straight games, leaving them in clear second place in the Metropolitan division. With the Devils so far out in front, this surge by them has gone overlooked and their odds to win the Stanley Cup haven’t changed all that much, leaving them tied with the Panthers (who are currently outside of a playoff spot) at +2200 on DraftKings.
On the awards front, this is also a good time to buy low on Tristan Jarry who is now 5-0 over his last five games and has bumped his record up to 13-3-3 on the season. Jarry’s save percentage sits at an elite .920 but is somehow still available at +3000 on DraftKings. He would certainly get lots of credit (and rightfully so) if Pittsburgh were to catch the Devils for first place.
The Penguins are simply undervalued right now. They are a solid team that ranks sixth in xGF% (expected goals for percentage) and have lots of depth at center and defense, which will come in very handy at playoff time. They make for a great futures bet in multiple categories with their odds still hanging at outdated prices.
All odds are provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds are subject to change.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is wavegoodbye) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.