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NHL Picks: Hockey Best Bets on DraftKings Sportsbook for January 5

Geoff Ulrich gives his best bets on DraftKings Sportsbook for today’s NHL betting card.

Thursday has ten games on the NHL slate to choose from. Four of the ten games on the DraftKings Sportsbook have totals of 6.5, as of writing, with the rest of the totals sitting at 6.0. The biggest favorites right now are the Carolina Hurricanes who are coming off their first loss in 11 games and sit as -225 home favorites against the Nashville Predators. The closest matchup today is in Vegas where the Golden Knights sit as just -120 home favorites against the Pittsburgh Penguins who are +100 underdogs.

Los Angeles Kings vs Boston Bruins

Kings Money Line (+135)

Despite being the clear top team in the league, this is a tough spot for the Bruins as they’ll be flying cross country to take on the Kings today, after an emotional win vs the Penguins at the Winter Classic. Boston has been great everywhere in 2022-23 but all four of their regulation losses have come on the road this season.

Los Angeles already handed Boston one of its four non-regulation losses earlier this season, winning 3-2 in Boston in a shootout in mid-December, and are a solid checking team with enough speed and defensive depth to counter-act the Bruins’ big forwards. The Kings may have also found a magic elixir in net with Pheonix Copley, who is 9-1 now on the season and posted a .933 save percentage in his last start — a 3-2 win over the Dallas Stars. With solid plus-money odds on offer, taking the Kings at home to squeak out a win looks like a solid play for tonight.

Money Line Parlay

Toronto Maple Leafs — Money Line -215

New Jersey Devils — Money Line -180

Parlay +127

Taking the two big Eastern Conference horses at home — and parlaying them as simple money line favorites tonight — looks like a prudent move if in search of bigger plus money odds.

The Leafs are coming off an exciting but disappointing 6-5 SO loss to the Blues two nights ago. The team has been a little up and down in their last couple of games but has also been dominating offensively. They’ve scored 27 times in their last six games alone and may even get a chance to beat up on Philipp Grubauer in this game, who owns a .881 save percentage and was pulled from his last game after five shots. Even if it’s not Grubauer, the Leafs’ top-10 power play is in a good spot against the second-worst penalty-kill in the league in the Kraken. Seattle’s also flying cross country after a win over the Oilers a day ago so the Leafs have a solid rest advantage here as well.

The Devils look like a team that has their confidence back. After losing some tight games to solid teams, they beat Detroit soundly yesterday and will get a team in the Blues who are without two of their top forwards, Vladimir Tarasenko and Ryan O’Reilly. The Blues put up a solid effort against the Leafs in their last start but the adrenaline of that win will have worn off by tonight and they’ll be mega shorthanded up front again against a team in the Devils who rank second in xGF% on the season. New Jersey may even have the advantage in net for once given that Jordan Binnington has allowed four or more goals — and posted a save percentage under .900 — in four of his last five games.

Colorado Avalanche vs Vancouver Canucks

Over 6.5 goals +100

Both of these teams come in on multiple-game losing streaks. For the Canucks, it’s been a case of them being incapable of keeping the puck out of their net. Vancouver has allowed 4.25 goals against over their last four games alone and enters this game having allowed the 2nd highest opponent shot percentage at 11.92% and the fourth most high-danger scoring chances against as well.

Colorado hasn’t done much better of late. They’ve been overplaying goalie Alexandar Georgiev who has posted save percentages under .900 now in his last four starts. Colorado and Vancouver also have a history of higher-scoring affairs, as the total has gone over five of the last six times these two teams have met up in Vancouver. Whatever the case, the plus money to take the over on two struggling defenses looks promising. Expect the offenses to win out and push this towards 7+ goals.

Place your NHL bets at DraftKings Sportsbook or by downloading the DraftKings Sportsbook app.

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.