NHL Game Preview and Pick- New Jersey Devils vs. Philadelphia Flyers
This contest is slated to get underway at 4 p.m. (PT) and it will be broadcast nationally on the NHL Network. Let's look at the NHL odds set forth for us in over game.
Year-to-Date NHL Record: 18-10-2
The Devils peppered Philadelphia with three goals in the first period of Wednesday night’s game en route to a 5-2 route victory as slight 102 home underdogs. It was their third win in the last four games after dropping their previous six outings. They are now 13-9-5 on the year and tied for sixth in the Eastern Conference standings with 31 points.
New Jersey has to be happy with the five-goal outburst against its rivals after posting an average of just 2.5 goals a game this year. Ilya Kovalchuk’s first-period goal raised his team-high total to 10 and Adam Henrique scored twice to raise his season goal total to nine. Johan Hedberg did a good job in net for the injured Martin Brodeur, but overall he has a goals-against-average of 2.9 in 13 previous appearances.
Philadelphia’s disappointing start has turned into a disappointing season with a 12-15-1 record in its first 28 games. Considering there are just 20 games left on the shortened schedule, the Flyers are in serious danger of missing the playoffs if they do not quickly turn things around. The good news for Friday night is that they will be playing this game at home where they are 8-4-1 this year.
Much of Philly’s problems can be traced to the play of Ilya Bryzgalov in goal. In 26 games this season he is allowing an average of 2.86 goals a game and sporting a less than stellar .896 save percentage. He is still expected to get the start on Friday night but it may be time to give Brian Boucher a chance to see what he can do between the pipes. Fortunately with the help of Jakub Voracek and Claude Giroux, the Flyers are still averaging 2.8 goals a game.
Devils vs. Flyers Betting Lines and Trends
BetOnline has opened New Jersey as a 136 road underdog on the money line with the Flyers 150 home favorites. The total line for this divisional clash has been set at 5.5.
The Devils are 1-4 in their last five games following a win but still 16-5 in their last 21 games against the Atlantic Division. The total has gone OVER in five of their last seven games on the road
The Flyers are 3-11 in their last 14 division games and 1-6 in the second game of their last seven home-and-home series. The total went OVER on Wednesday and has now gone OVER in their last six division games.
New Jersey stretched its current winning streak in this series to seven games overall and heading into the Wells Fargo Center it is 5-2 in its last seven road games against the Flyers. The total has now gone OVER in four of the last six meetings between the two.
Devils vs. Flyers Game Prediction
New Jersey has owned this series recently and is 3-0 this season. However, you get the feeling that the Flyers are due to turn the tables especially on their home ice where they have won the majority of their games this season. It will not be easy, but stick with Philadelphia to earn a split against its rivals for our NHL picks on Friday night.
Flyers 3 - Devils 2 (lines provided by BetOnline)