Devils vs. Blues NHL Picks: Goaltenders To Keep Scores Low

Bruce Webster

Tuesday, January 12, 2016 2:13 PM GMT

The New Jersey Devils come in off a good 2-1 road win over Minnesota, while the St Louis Blues are off a 2-1 road win over the Los Angeles Kings, who will be our NHL pick tonight?

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NHL Pick: Under 4.5
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

 

Defense Keys Win Over the Wild
The New Jersey Devils have been very solid on the defensive end of the ice this year and that defense really was the key to their 2-1 win in Minnesota on Sunday. The Devils allowed Minnesota just on goal on 18 shots, plus they killed off both power plays they faced. All three areas they have been strong at this year as the Devils check in at 4th in goals allowed (2.3 gpg), 5th in shots allowed (28.1 spg) and 7th in penalty kill (82.7%). Grabbing the win was Cory Schneider, who is now 18-18 with 2.09 GAA on the year, including 11-7 with a 1.08 GAA on the road and he is 3-5 with a 1.93 GAA in his career vs the Blues. 

Scoring for the Devils in the win over Minnesota was Adam Henrique, who notched his 15th of the year, which is 2nd on the team and Jon Merrill, who scored his first. The Devils only had 17 shots in the game, which is really nothing new as they are last in the league in shot’s take, putting up just 24.5 spg. That has resulted in an average of just 2.2 gpg, which is 29th in the league. They have been decent on the power play, where they are 14th, converting on 18.7% of their chances. If this team had a bit more offense they would be very dangerous. The Devils have had plenty of injuries this year and Jiri Tlusty has been the latest to go down. He played in 30 games so far, scoring twice.

 

Blues Snap Slide with Win in Los Angeles
The St Louis came into their last game of a three game road trip vs Los Angeles with a five game losing streak in tow, but they fought hard and came away with the 2-1 win in a shootout. Leading the way on offense was Alex Pietrangelo (3rd), who scored the lone goal in regulation for the Blues and Troy Brouwer, who scored the deciding goal in the 7th round of the shootout. This game was the Blues 4th in a row that went to either OT or a shootout. That’s a lot of extra hockey, but still the Blues were very happy to come home now with some momentum after breaking the five game losing skid.

The Blues recently suffered a huge blow when Jake Allen was placed on IR. Allen is 18-13 with a 2.17 GAA on the year and has five shutouts to boot. He has been one of the better goalies in the league this year and will be missed. That means more time for Brian Elliott, who is just 6-8 with a 2.33 GAA on the year and he is 2-4 with a 2.71 GAA in his career vs the Devils. The Blues check in at 22nd in the league in scoring, putting up 2.4 gpg, while converting on 21.1% of their power play chances, which is 6th in the league. On defense 10th in goals allowed, giving up 2.4 gpg and 3rd in penalty kill at 85.6%. Let's review the latest trends & NHL odds.

 

New Jersey Trends
The Under is 30-11-16 in their last 57 after allowing two goals or less in their previous game
The Under is 48-20-14 in Devils last 82 vs. the Western Conference

St Louis Trends
The Under is 18-6-7 in their last 31 home games
The Under is 8-0 in their last eight games playing on two days rest

 

Betting Analysis
Both teams are injury riddled at the moment, especially the Blues, who come home with just 17 healthy bodies and that should lead to a low scoring game. Both teams have had trouble scoring as it is and with less depth on both sides it should make it harder for them to score, especially vs quality goaltending. This one has a final of 2-1 written all over it. Take Under as the sharp NHL pick.