Senators' Betting Resurgence to Continue vs. Wild

Dana Lane

Tuesday, December 19, 2017 6:31 PM UTC

Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017 6:31 PM UTC

The Ottawa Senators had been in a major funk, but they have won back-to-back games heading into Tuesday night's matchup against the visiting Minnesota Wild, who have dropped two in a row. 

Minnesota Wild at Ottawa SenatorsFree NHL Pick: Senators -115Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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All things must come to an end.

That was the case Monday night as our three-game win streak was clobbered by the San Jose Sharks and the Edmonton Oilers going OVER the total. No worries for us, we’ll just manage our money well and get that loss back with the Ottawa Senators tonight vs. Minnesota.

I was leaning towards the Sens late last night, but then I saw on the SBR Odds page that a large amount of wagers and money was backing the Wild and that pushed me over on Ottawa. The reason you may need a push with any game involving the Wild is they are the most difficult team in the league to figure out. I can never count on them to give me a consistent effort or result, a fact reflected by their shots on goal numbers (28.58 per game/31st), but they’ve still managed to keep their nose above the .500 mark.

This is a team that put up 13 shots against the Blackhawks on Sunday in the 1st period, then managed just 15 the rest of the game, leading to their 4-1 loss. Even inside a game you can’t count on a consistent effort. The troubling part is I would have thought Minnesota would have given 60 minutes against Chicago considering it could have swiped a piece of the wild card with a win. No shame in losing to the Hawks but they were never in it. Now I’m expected to bet that they’ll find some inspiration against the Senators? The final score wasn’t an accurate indication of how much better Chicago is.

As I was saying on the "Ice Guys Show" on Tuesday morning, this may be the start of both teams going in two different directions. Two games isn’t a huge sample size, but the Senators have won two straight games allowing just two goals. Meanwhile, Minnesota has dropped its last two and scored three times in the process.

I think we overlook puck possession as a tool to properly handicap games. The first element of controlling the puck is the faceoff circle. Does the team I’m betting have a reasonable chance of owning time of possession and does that emanate from winning draws? The Senators' answer yes to both. Say what you want about the Matt Duchene deal, and there is a lot, but he does consistently win his faceoffs for a team that is an above average Corsi team. The Wild are ranked 30th in puck control while ranking in the lower half of the league in faceoff wins. This is a huge handicapping advantage.

With a win the Senators will have just their second three-game winning streak of the season. This is a team that’s desperate to get back in the playoff race in a building where they’re begging for support. Get down on the Sens’ resurgence.

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