Free NHL Picks: Bet Isles -130 to Bounce Back Against Devils

Saturday, October 31, 2015 12:44 PM UTC

Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015 12:44 PM UTC

The Islanders are hoping to shake off a stunning loss to the Hurricanes while the Devils are rolling. Let us review what the NHL odds makers are offering & make the smart choice with our NHL picks.

New York Islanders (6-4, +0.3 units)
Those who included the Isles in their NHL picks on Thursday night were sorely disappointed as the heavily favored New Yorkers were defeated in their own building 3-2 by the middling-at-best Carolina Hurricanes. The Islanders took a 2-1 lead into the third period but when the buzzer sounded the score was knotted at two which signaled the overtime period. Midway through it was Carolina's Ron Hainsey who ended the evening by slipping a pass behind New York's netminder Thomas Greiss. The Isles had won six of their last seven heading into what many believed would be a "gimme game" for the streaking club but it was not to be and now they must pack up and make the short jaunt to Newark.

Perhaps the biggest improvement over last season's edition is in the penalty killing department. Last season the Islanders ranked 26th in the NHL stopping only 78 percent of their opponent's man-advantage situations but this year that number has spiked to 91 percent and ranks New York No.1 in that category. Goaltender Jaroslav Halak missed Thursday's game with an undisclosed illness but if he is feeling better then he will most likely get the nod on Saturday night. Halak has a 3-1 record with a 1.77 goals against average with a .940 save percentage on the young season.


New Jersey Devils (5-5, +1.4 units)
The Devils dropped their first four games of the season but then made a stunning turnaround by winning five of their next six. The NHL Odds makers made them +130 underdogs in their last outing in Philadelphia and the Devils proved them wrong by defeating the Flyers 4-1. Travis Zajac tallied twice and Kyle Palmieri had a goal and a pair of assists while goaltender Corey Schneider stopped 27 of 28 shots.

New Jersey has been outstanding on the road compiling a 4-1 record but when it comes to playing in front of their fans things haven't gone nearly as well. When the Devils suit up at the Prudential Center their record is a miserable 1-4 but they will get the opportunity to improve upon that when they take on the Islanders tonight. New Jersey ranks 20th in goals scored, 25th in penalty killing, 13th in goals against and 6th on the power play.


Final Veredict
The New York Islanders are 4-0 (+4.5 Units) against the spread versus the Devils when playing in New Jersey over the last two seasons. That streak will continue after this one is through. The Islanders are superior in all facets of the game and will capitalize if and when they get into a man advantage situation as their 5th ranked power play unit should feast on New Jersey's subpar penalty killing units. New York also has the ability to roll four strong lines while the Devils cannot come close to matching that depth.

In addition the Devils have scored only once in 12 power play opportunities over the last six games against the Islanders. That is another streak that should continue as the Isles have been killing penalties better than anyone else in the NHL. New York's Jaroslav Halak has won four straight against New Jersey and boasts a sterling 1.14 GAA including two shutouts in his last six meetings. If he does get the starting nod then make absolutely sure you include the Islanders in your NHL Picks.

NHL Pick: Play the Islanders -130 at Heritage

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