Wednesday's NHL Picks of the Day for October 22nd

Ross Benjamin

Wednesday, October 22, 2014 12:47 PM UTC

Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2014 12:47 PM UTC

There are only 4-games on the NHL betting odds board tonight, and our resident hockey handicapping expert shares his two best selections. Read this insightful handicapping analysis on the games between Toronto/Ottawa and Philadelphia/Pittsburgh.

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Ottawa Senators 7:05 PM ET
According to the NHL betting odds at Pinnacle, the Ottawa Senators are a -150 money line favorite, and rightfully so. After losing their season opener, the Senators have reeled off 4 consecutive wins. Their goaltending has been terrific in the early going. Craig Anderson has posted a stellar .939 save percentage in 3-starts, and Robin Lehner has an excellent .950 in 2-starts. Ottawa will be playing on 3-days of rest, and tonight will be just their 3rd game in the last 10-days. The rest factor certainly can’t be ignored considering they’re playing at home, and facing an opponent that just played last night on the road.

Toronto comes off a 5-2 road win versus the Islanders last night. The concern from the Leafs standpoint during the early part of the schedule has been some shoddy defensive play. They’re allowing 3.0 goals per outing, and opponents are averaging 34.0 shots on goal per game against them. They go from playing one of the more porous defensive teams in the Eastern Conference last night, to one of the best tonight. My advice is to fade the Leafs as one of your NHL picks today.

Free NHL Pick: Ottawa -150 over Toronto

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Philadelphia Flyers vs. Pittsburgh Penguins 8:05 PM ET

Total: Over 5.5 (-107) /Under 5.5 (-103)

My point of emphasis in this game will be geared toward the total of 5.5. The NHL betting odds on the total are courtesy of 5Dimes sportsbook. The Flyers have been horrible defensively this season allowing 4.2 goals per game, and that’s certainly been a major contributor to their 1-5 start. They’ve also scored 3-golas or more in 4 of those 6-games. The Flyers are coming off a 4-0 loss at Chicago in their previous game. Philadelphia has gone over the total in 10 of 12-games the past 2-seasons, following a game in which 4-goals or less combined were scored.

Pittsburgh’s offensive capabilities have never been questioned since Sidney Crosby first donned a Penguins jersey. Their vulnerability during playoff failures in recent years have been a direct result of less than adequate goaltending. The Penguins are averaging 4.0 goals, and 36.0 shots on net per game, during the early part of the 2014-2015 slate. This matchup versus their fierce Metropolitan Division rival suits them just fine considering how defensively challenged they are. My suggestion is for your NHL picks tonight will be for this one to play on the high side of the number.

Free NHL Pick: Flyers/Penguins to go over the total of 6.0

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