We’ve highlighted the Philadelphia Flyers-New York Islanders matchup in its own article and below, we’ve got a few more previews and picks for you.
St. Louis Blues @ Nashville Predators
The Blues played half asleep on Friday night and paid the price for it. They had a full week off in between games but when they got back on the ice last night, they were completely outplayed by the Vancouver Canucks, who beat them while using a backup goaltender. They had just five shots on net in the first period and weren’t their typical, aggressive selves. They only generated two power plays.
However, people who regularly make NHL picks now that the Blues are a solid team and simply had an off night. On Saturday, they aren’t laying much on the NHL odds, so they’re worth a shot on the road facing a Nashville team that’s without their top goaltender (Pekka Rinne). I’ll take the Blues and expect a much better effort from them tonight.
Free Pick: Blues -120 at Bookmaker
Winnipeg Jets @ Dallas Stars
The Dallas Stars appear to be worth the price of admission on Saturday night when they take on the slumping Winnipeg Jets. The Stars have won three straight at home while the Jets three straight and seven of nine. The biggest issue for the Jets these days is that they can’t score enough (16 goals in their last eight games) and they are allowing too many goals (17 goals in their last five games).
The Stars have Kari Lehtonen back between the pipes and having their main man in net makes a big difference. He’s 3-1-0 with a 1.41 GAA and a .956 save percentage this season. However, the Stars have given up 22 goals in the five games where a different goaltender made the start. Lehtonen also plays well against the Jets as he has a 0.78 GAA and a .974 save percentage in his last three starts against them. He should be able to keep the Jets offense in a slump. Take the Stars.
Free Pick: Stars -130 on the NHL odds boards
Buffalo Sabres @ Tampa Bay Lightning
The Sabres earned just their second win of the season on Friday night with their “impressive” 3-1 stomping of the hapless Florida Panthers. They’ll continue their Florida two-step with a visit to Tampa Bay on Saturday.
The Sabres have had trouble scoring all season long as their 18 goals in 12 games is among the fewest in the NHL. I look for their feeble offense to help lead the way to an under.
The Lightning are coming off a 6-5 overtime win over the Chicago Blackhawks but for the most part, their defense and goaltending has been very good. Netminder Ben Bishop has a respectable 2.53 GAA with a .915 save percentage. Look for this to be a low-scoring affair.
Free Pick: Under 5.5 at Bodog
Make sure to view the NHL Pick For the Maple Leafs & Penguins~