Between Kings & Coyotes, Bet Money Line on Defending Champs

Ross Benjamin

Saturday, October 11, 2014 3:58 PM GMT

Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014 3:58 PM GMT

Before placing your NHL picks for tonights game between the Arizona Coyotes and the defending Stanley Cup champions, read this article. Ross Benjamin explains why the LA Kings are the right bet. 

Home Opener versus the Defending Champs
The Arizona Coyotes host the Los Angeles Kings tonight in Phoenix with a 9:05 PM ET scheduled start. According to NHL betting odds the Kings are a -135 money line favorite and the posted total is 5.0. The defending Stanley Cup champion Kings opened the season with a 4-0 loss at home against the San Jose Sharks. The Coyotes weren’t much better in their home opener on Thursday by being routed 6-2 at the hands of the Winnipeg Jets. The Coyotes have defeated the Kings in their last 4-meetings in Phoenix.

 

Stanley Cup Hangover
The Kings will be a force once again this season, and at the same time will have the proverbial target on their head by all comers, as a result of being the defending champions. The latter of which was quite evident in their season opening 4-0 home loss to the San Jose Sharks, who the Kings eliminated in their 2014 Western Conference Quarterfinal playoff series. After an emotional pregame ceremony that saw their Stanley Cup banner being hoisted to the rafters of the Staples Center, the Kings gave their fans little else to cheer about thereafter. The Sharks Antti Niemi was brilliant in turning away all 34 shots on goal by the Kings. The Kings fell behind 4-0 late in the 2nd period, and were never able to mount a serious comeback threat. Jonathan Quick was far from sharp in allowing 4-goals on 27-shots, and was replaced at the beginning of the 3rd period by Martin Jones.

 

Coyote Ugly
By saying that the Coyotes turned in a horrible performance during their home opener, you would be making a vast understatement. For starters, the Coyotes received no help from goaltender Mike Smith who allowed 6-goals on just 27-shots on net. They fell behind 4-1 after one period, and quite frankly were never in the game after Mikkel Boedker tied the game at 1-1 at 7:38 of the 1st period, and watched as the Jets scored the next 5-goals in the game to open up an insurmountable 6-1 lead.

 

Final Analysis
The Kings faced a quality team in their season opener, playing with big time revenge stemming from playoff elimination. They were also stonewalled by a red-hot goaltender. The Coyotes on the other hand, were soundly beaten at home on Thursday, by an average at best Winnipeg Jets team, and their compete level bordered on lackluster, and that description may even be a bit too kind. For my NHL pick here, I like the defending champions to bounce back tonight versus a vastly inferior opponent than the one that they faced last Wednesday.

Free Pick: Kings -135 over the Coyotes at Bodog

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