There’s a total of five games on the NHL betting card on Monday, including two slumping teams that are laying -200 or more. That being the case, we’ll avoid those and focus our picks on the three other games.
New York Islanders vs. Toronto Maple Leafs
NHL Odds: Islanders -170
The Toronto Maple Leafs haven’t been doing much in the way of scoring this month, averaging just 1.50 goals per game (second-worst in the NHL). Even so, I’m tempted to take an over on Monday when they host the New York Islanders. Toronto has been a team that’s done much better offensively at home than on the road. At the Air Canada Centre, they average 3.38 goals per game, which is the third-best number in the league. On the road, they score just 1.91, which is the second-worst. So we’ll look for them to contribute.
As for the Islanders, they have owned Jonathan Bernier, who is expected to be in net. Bernier has a 3.20 GAA in five career outings against the Isles and has giving up seven goals in his last two starts. With that in mind, I’ll take the over with my NHL picks.
NHL Pick: Over 5.5 at 5Dimes
NHL Odds: Penguins -115
The Pittsburgh Penguins are on a roll, so why bet against them? Yes, they’re on the west coast, wrapping up a four-game road trip but they enter the Shark Tank having won two straight and six of their last seven. Their offense is cooking as they’ve averaged 3.13 goals per game in their last seven.
The Sharks are a mess as they’ve lost four of six and 11 of 16. They continue to be useless at home as they’ve now lost nine of their last 10 at home. Antti Niemi continues to get the bulk of the starts for this team but he has been lousy. He has a 2.74 GAA since the All-Star break and has allowed at least three goals in three of his last four outings. The Sharks have won just three of his last 11 starts. Take the Pens.
NHL Pick: Penguins -115 at The Greek
Anaheim Ducks vs. Vancouver Canucks
NHL Odds: Ducks -115
The Vancouver Canucks continue to be an up and down team as they’ve now dropped two of three. They haven’t won or lost more than two in a row since January 19th, which illustrates just how much this team seesaws. The challenge for the Canucks is that their goaltending has soured. Since the All-Star break, they’re giving up 3.15 goals per game, which is the fifth-worst number in the NHL. They’ve been even worst lately, giving up an average of 4.4 goals per game over their last five, so keep this in mind when looking over the NHL odds.
On the flip side, Anaheim has also had some goaltending issues since the All-Star break but they’ve improved recently. They’ve won seven of nine while giving up just 2.0 goals per game over their last five. The Ducks have more momentum and are the better of the two teams here.
NHL Pick: Ducks -115 at Bodog