Wednesday, 10:00 PM ET
Free NHL Pick: Golden Knights ML
Best Line Offered: BetOnline
The Predators travel to Sin City to take on the Knights after a solid 4-1 win over the slumping Colorado Avalanche on Monday night. Nashville has owned the Avalanche, winning 12 of their last 13 meetings but their most recent victory came courtesy of stellar goaltending by veteran Pekka Rinne. The 36-year-old Swede kicked aside 35 of 36 shots and stoned Colorado winger Matt Nieto on a penalty shot in the second period. Rinne’s fellow Swedish countryman Viktor Arvidsson added his 19th goal of the season to lead the team in that category. The Preds had lost four of their last five before their Monday night win over the Avs.
Over their last six games the Golden Knights have alternated wins and losses, therefore, if the pattern holds true then Vegas fans will be celebrating after their game against the Predators on Wednesday night as they are coming off of a disappointing 4-2 loss against Minnesota as -175 home chalk. The NHL odds have reflected Vegas as favorites in 14 of their last 15 contests and even in their lone appearance as an underdog, they were nearly a pick’em as -105 road hounds to the Jets in Winnipeg, a game they lost 4-1 on Tuesday of last week.
The Knights hope to return the favor of a 4-1 loss in Nashville the last time these clubs met and in that late October game, Nashville’s Ryan Hartman found the back of the net twice while netminder Juuse Saros stopped 23 of 24 shots. The Knights’ backup goalie, Malcolm Subban, took the loss and turned aside 25 of the 28 shots he faced with the fourth goal being an empty netter notched by Viktor Arvidsson.
These are two teams that are evenly matched and have identical records as they face off for the second time this season. The Predators have the luxury of a pair of top-notch goaltenders in Pekka Rinne and Juuse Saros, currently 2nd in the NHL in goals allowed, averaging 2.61 per game. On the flipside, the Knights have an ace in Marc-Andre Fleury who has taken the lion’s share of the starts over lightly used Malcolm Subban. Speaking of Subban, he has been battling an illness and was placed on injured reserve which means Max Lagace will likely serve as the backup.
Vegas is 5th in goals allowed, surrendering 2.69 goals per contest and are one of the stingier clubs in the league on special teams, as the penalty killing unit has been successful in 83.6 percent of their man-down situations. Factor that against an anemic Predators’ power play unit that is converting only 13.3 percent (29th) of their opportunities. And that is essentially what this game comes down to, special teams, as these clubs are that similar. In addition, Vegas is 16-8 straight up at home while Nashville is 13-13 away from their barn. Fleury will look to atone for a disappointing night in his last start and the Knights will get their payback from that 4-1 loss to the Preds back in October. Lay the lumber and back Vegas in your NHL picks on Wednesday night.
Final Score: Golden Knights 3, Predators 0