Check out our individual previews of the New York Rangers-New Jersey Devils affair and the Phoenix Coyotes-Vancouver Canucks. Below are previews and free NHL picks of the remaining three games on the schedule.
Florida Panthers vs. Detroit Red Wings
The Florida Panthers have shown a pulse recently by winning two of their last three. So have the Detroit Red Wings as they’ve won three of their last four.
This is interesting matchup as you’d like to assume that Detroit is the better team but they are really banged up right now. They’ll be without Pavel Datsyuk, Jimmy Howard and Johan Franzen on Sunday, which definitely takes a bite out of their roster. On top of that, they’ve lost two of three to Florida this season. The Red Wings are also a horrible home team with just nine wins in 27 games at Joe Louis Arena this season.
Instead, I’ll bank on the over in this one. Five seems to low of a total on the NHL odds as neither of these teams have gone under five in any of their last four games.
Pick: Over 5 at Bookmaker
Winnipeg Jets vs. Chicago Blackhawks
The Blackhawks just can’t seem to snap out of their funk as they’ve now dropped eight of their last 13 games. That’s astounding when you consider that the Blackhawks only had eight losses in their first 28 games.
Their offense has clearly tapered off as although they are still the highest-scoring team in the league by average (3.47 per game), they are only averaging 2.73 per game in January (15th in the NHL). That’s really been the major difference as the amount of goals they’re giving up in January is right on part with what they’ve done the rest of the season.
On Sunday, they’ll get a test from one of the hotter teams in the league as the Jets come to town. The Jets have won five of six – all under new head coach Paul Maurice – and they’re really playing well. Laying my -240 with your NHL picks here is ridiculous. The Blackhawks are struggling and the Jets are the better team right now. However, it’s hard to pull the trigger because the Jets are not only in a back-to-back situation after defeating Toronto 5-4 in a shootout on Saturday night, it’s also their third game in four nights. With fatigue being a factor, make the Jets play a small one but still a play nonetheless.
Pick: Jets +200 at Pinnacle
Nashville Predators vs. Edmonton Oilers
Even though Nashville blew a 4-1 lead in Calgary on Friday night, they’ve been playing pretty well recently and deserve a look in this spot. Even with that loss, they’ve won four of six, which is their best stretch of hockey since mid-November.
Edmonton just can’t seem to buy a win these days as they enter Sunday’s game on a six-game losing streak. They have also lost 11 of 13.
There’s really no reason to add the Oilers to your sports picks as they simply don’t win many games. On top of that, the payout isn’t that great as this game is virtually a pick. Take the Preds.
Pick: Predators -110 at Ladbrokes