Stars to Shoot by the Jets Tonight

Dana Lane

Monday, November 6, 2017 6:17 PM UTC

Monday, Nov. 6, 2017 6:17 PM UTC

The Dallas Stars seek revenge against the Winnipeg Jets at the American Airlines Center, puck drops at 8:30 ET / 5:30 PT. Read on for a valuable NHL pick.

Free NHL Pick: Dallas Stars -134Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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Winnipeg Jets vs Dallas Stars  

Less than a week ago the Winnipeg Jets handed the Dallas Stars a 5-2 defeat at the MTS Bell Place in Winnipeg. Tonight the Dallas Stars hope to return the favor at home where they have won five of their first six. The lone loss came in their first game against the Vegas Golden Knights meaning they have won five straight and seem to be getting into a rhythm under first-year coach Ken Hitchcock. The Stars followed their loss to the Jets with a 5-1 home thrashing of the Buffalo Sabres. Despite the obvious, the game showed me that the Stars have another level in their next outing after a loss. I expect them to use that intensity to overwhelm the Winnipeg Jets.

Like always, bettors are overreacting to their recent meeting and the fact the Stars will be battling some injuries.

Ken Hitchcock said after Sunday’s practice that center Radek Faksa (lower body) and Tyler Pitlick (upper body) are both doubtful for tonight. There is a possibility that Martin Hanzal could return from a lower-body injury but most likely we won’t hear anything definitively until after practice today.

So let’s look at these injuries and see if it really should scare us off the Stars.

Faksa is a fourth line center who is having a fantastic start to his season but typically he isn’t a guy that would cause us to think twice when backing Dallas. In just 8:30 of playing time against Buffalo, Faksa found the back of the net but hadn’t scored in six games prior. The versatile and defensively responsible Gemel Smith will most likely fill in for Faksa or be on the wing if Hanzal returns which appear likely if all goes well with his evaluation.

Linemate Tyler Pitlick, who has two goals in 14 games, hasn’t found the score sheet in six straight. So are we really going to go all in because two guys who 1 goal in the last 12 combined games played.

The Stars 4th line will most likely feature Hanzel, Smith, and Jamie Oleksiak on the left side.

In my season preview on SBR I predicted that the Stars wouldn’t be as good as most predicted but they are a more reliable wager than last season where the Winnipeg Jets may not be as reliable. The Jets are 7-3-3 on the season but of the teams that are considered playoff contenders, Winnipeg probably promotes the least amount of fear in their opponents. The Jets are ranked last in the league with just 27.6 shots per game despite their early success. That’s almost two shots less per game than last season when they finished 21st. The perception is that Winnipeg is a better team than last year but when you watch both of these clubs the only team that has created real confidence is Dallas.


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