Week Ahead in NHL: Hockey Betting Preview For Oct. 29 to Nov. 3

Doug Upstone

Sunday, October 28, 2018 12:48 PM UTC

Sunday, Oct. 28, 2018 12:48 PM UTC

The pucks keep flying around the NHL rinks and we are here to keep you informed, particularly to those who take a portion of the money you earned for betting hockey.

The Good

No teams in the Pacific Division have hit the ground running and asserted themselves. That is why it was so peculiar to see Vancouver in first place for a time last week. The Canucks were picked to finish last in the Pacific by hockey experts and serious puck bettors, which made it humorous to see them at the top, not the bottom of their division.

Vancouver is not doing anything special and on the technical side their strongest attribute has been killing penalties, ranking around 10th. For a team that has not totaled more than 75 points in the last three seasons, it's hard to get fired up about them on the surface. Yet, Vancouver has been the best bet for NHL picks and the right early choice.

The Bad

The Los Angeles, Kings are from that, playing more like jackals. The Kings are not coming close to beating the NHL odds as losers of eight of their first 10 contests. Los Angeles has been more defensive-minded for years, but if you don't score you cannot win. L.A. is at a paltry 1.8 goals a game which as you might imagine is last in the NHL. They also are not helping themselves when they have a man advantage either, listed next-to-last in power-play percentage. This is a team-wide scoring slump and they might have to burn the sticks and try some new ones.

Detroit Cannot Meet Minimum Requirements

For the longest time, Detroit was among the top scoring teams in the NHL. More than a decade ago the Red Wings put a promotion together with Arby's; if a Detroit player got a hat trick, there were various ways Detroiters could get curly fries, according to ESPN's Greg Wyshynski.

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— Arby's (@Arbys) October 2, 2018
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Well, these are not the Red Wings of old and they have not had a player light the lamp three times in a game since the 2016-17 season. Detroit was 28th in scoring last year and thus far remain in the same spot. With this, Arby's has reconfigured its promotion for free fries in the Motor City. As first noted by hockey analytics blogger Prashanth Iyer, Arby's is now giving away free curly fries for any game in which the Red Wings score three or more goals, which takes the pressure off any individual Wings player from trying their best to keep the fans happy.

Tasty Rink Betting Tidbit

Puck line home underdogs are 32-11 SU.

What Lies Ahead: The Schedule

Sunday: The New York Rangers and L.A. Kings collide for an early matinee and both teams desperately need a victory to have something to build on.

Tuesday: Vegas is at Nashville (8 p.m.; NBCSN) and these have been the last two teams to represent the Western Conference in the Stanley Cup Final, and they have their eyes on doing so again.

Thursday: The stuffed Thursday card highlights by what many futures bettors see as a potential Cup showdown late next spring with the Predators making a stop at Tampa Bay.

Saturday: Saturdays are "Hockey Night in Canada" and they will feature these games:

Edmonton at Detroit, 6:30 p.m. ET
Toronto at Pittsburgh, 6 :30 p.m. ET
Tampa Bay at Montreal, 6:30 p.m. ET
Chicago at Calgary, 10 p.m. ET

The Maple Leafs-Penguins game will be the most compelling. However, with Montreal improving they could knock off the Lightning.

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