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Jack Eichel of the Vegas Golden Knights warms up before a game against the Vancouver Canucks at T-Mobile Arena.
Jack Eichel of the Vegas Golden Knights warms up before a game against the Vancouver Canucks at T-Mobile Arena. Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images/AFP.

The West-leading Vegas Golden Knights travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Penguins on Thursday night. Is there value on Vegas to take down the Pens? Let's examine the matchup in our Golden Knights-Penguins picks based on the top odds.

The Vegas Golden Knights are off to a terrific start in 2022-23 with a 17-6-1 record to put them atop the Western Conference standings. They’ve been road warriors as well with a 10-1-1 record away from home.

The Pittsburgh Penguins haven’t been enjoying quite the same luck. They’re 11-8-4 overall on the season and just 4-3-2 at home.

Here are our top picks for the NHL matchup between the Golden Knights and Penguins (odds via DraftKings Sportsbook, BetRivers, and FanDuel Sportsbook; Pick confidence is based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

Check out our NHL best bets for Thursday, and our Lightning-Flyers and shot prop picks.

Golden Knights vs. Penguins Game Info

Date: Thursday, Dec. 1, 7 p.m. ET
TV: ATTSN-PT, ATTSN-RM
Location: PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, PA

Golden Knights vs. Penguins Odds

Golden Knights vs. Penguins Odds Analysis

The Penguins opened up as -117 favorites with the Golden Knights at -103. The odds haven’t moved too much, with Pittsburgh between -110 (BetRivers) and -120 (FanDuel), and Vegas between -105 (DraftKings) and +100 (FanDuel).

The handle has been evenly split thus far, but the Golden Knights are receiving over three-quarters of the tickets.

The total opened at 6.5 and has remained there, with the books favoring the Under on 6.5 (-115 at BetMGM).

Golden Knights vs. Penguins Picks

Golden Knights vs. Penguins ML Pick

Golden Knights (+100) ★★★

Vegas has been one of the best teams in the league this season both in terms of record and underlying stats. The Golden Knights boast the fifth-best expected goals for share at five-on-five (54.08%). Pittsburgh is right behind Vegas in xGF% at 53.95%, but the Pens haven’t been able to convert that into wins. 

The Penguins are in a bit of a tough stretch here after losses to the Toronto Maple Leafs and Carolina Hurricanes. The Golden Knights continue a gauntlet of tough opponents for Pittsburgh.

Logan Thompson (12-4-0, 2.44 goals-against average, .921 SV%) has been emerging as a great starting goalie for the Golden Knights, and he's in the Calder Trophy conversation. Tristan Jarry (8-3-3, 2.91 GAA, .914 SV%) isn’t too shabby for the Penguins, either.

This should be an evenly matched game, but I’m taking the Golden Knights simply as the better team at even money.

Golden Knights vs. Penguins O/U Pick

Under 6.5 (-115) ★★★★

This will be a defensive battle and a good goalie duel between Thompson and Jarry. Additionally, both teams have been trending to the Under recently.

Each of the Golden Knights' past four games have gone Under the total, with a combined total of 22 goals in those four contests. The Penguins' matchups have also gone Under in four straight and five of six, with five goals or fewer in each of their last four.

Both of these teams are in the top half of the league in expected goals against per 60 minutes at 5-on-5. Vegas ranks seventh (2.42) while Pittsburgh sits at 11th (2.5).

Golden Knights vs. Penguins Prop Pick

Penguins Under 33.5 shots on goal (-112) ★★★★

The Penguins average 33 shots per game, but most of the damage contributing to that rate came early in the campaign. 

They registered 373 shots in their first 10 games (37.3 per contest) and reached the 34-shot mark in all but three. Since then, they’ve taken 385 shots in 13 games (29.6 per) and went over 33.5 shots just three times.

On the defensive side of things, Vegas averages just 30 shots on goal against per game in 2022-23. The Golden Knights have allowed 34-plus shots on goal in just five of their 24 games, and twice in their last nine.

Where to Bet on Golden Knights-Penguins Picks

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Golden Knights-Penguins picks made 12/1/2022 at 11:30 a.m. ET.