Happy pre-Thanksgiving everyone, I hope you all have a wonderful holiday no matter how you choose to spend it. We will be spending it sweating out NHL bets, and we have a massive 15 game NHL slate to rummage through. So be ready to make some wagers and let's cash with some best bets. BetQL subscribers can see more betting trends and all of our best bets with star ratings for every pick.
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One of my favorite games on the board today just happens to be a classic rivalry between the Philadelphia Flyers and Washington Capitals.
Why do I love this matchup? Well, because one of these teams has to win, which hasn't happened for either of them in a long time. The Flyers have lost their last seven straight games, while the Capitals have lost their last four (not quite the rivalry it used to be, as both teams probably wont be competing for much in 2022). After starting surprisingly well, Philly has hit the regression barrier in a big way. If you have read these articles through the season so far, I have talked about it many times. This team stinks. They are scoring 2.53 goals per game and taking 28.9 shots each contest, which is very underwhelming on both fronts for this offense. Defensively, they are worse, allowing 33.8 shots per game, and the goaltending has cooled off big time.
Washington isn't that much better, honestly. They score just 2.75 goals per game and get 29.9 shots to the net. Neither stat is impressive. On defense, they allow 31.4 shots per game and 3.25 goals, also very lackluster. Alex Ovechkin is left to do it all on his own, especially with the amount of injuries and suspensions this team has holding them back. They have very little talent right now outside of Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov.
MY PICK: Yes, the Flyers are terrible and on the road, but what business does Washington have being a -235 favorite against anyone right now? They are also on a losing streak, and it isn't like they have been any good either. Just a sprinkle, but at +190 or more, I have to take Philadelphia.
Another exciting matchup for tonight is the late game between the Ottawa Senators and Vegas Golden Knights. After a good start to the season, Ottawa has taken the plunge into the depths of mediocrity. The Senators have lost three of their last five, and it has really been a struggle. Where it has been really bad is on defense, where they are allowing a whopping 33.9 shots per game. Most goaltenders won't stand a chance, and they haven't, allowing 3.56 goals per game as well. The offense hasn't been bad, but there is no way they can keep up when they letting up that many shots.
Vegas has been a huge surprise to me, as I thought they would take a step back this season. That simply hasn't happened, and they have been one of the best teams in the NHL so far. Now, they have lost three of their last five as well. but overall they still are at the top. They are doing this behind a potent offense that scores 3.56 goals per game and takes 33.7 shots each time out, but the defense has been no slouch. Rookie goalie Logan Thompson has been a revelation for them in net, which was supposed to be their weakness. He and backup netminder Adin Hill have allowed just 2.55 goals per game. It helps when the defense is allowing just under the average shots per game, at 29.5.
MY PICK: Ottawa has really struggled as of late, and going into Vegas to face the Knights is not what the doctor ordered for them to get a win in that column. The juice is insane on the ML, so take a shot with VGK -1.5.
Oh man, it is hard to watch the Blackhawks right now. Chicago has lost four straight games, and it doesn't get any easier here with the Dallas Stars down in Texas. The Blackhawks are awful offensively, scoring just 2.44 goals per game and taking 25.8 shots. Those are two of the worst numbers in hockey. It isn't any better on defense, where they allow 34.6 shots on net each time out, and 3.39 goals as well. They really don't do anything well, but they will be getting star defenseman Seth Jones back. If he plays this game, that will certainly give them a boost on that side of the ice.
Dallas has gotten off to a good start, and they have won three of their last five games. However, there is something about this team that I think is off, and maybe they shouldn't be doing what they are. For instance, they are taking 30.2 shots per game, which is average in the league, but scoring 3.84 goals per contest. That is one of the higher numbers in terms of goals per game in the NHL. They have been getting pretty lucky if you ask me. On defense, their goaltending has been fantastic. They allow just 2.68 goals per game, which is also a top-10 number in the league.
MY PICK: I can't believe I'm saying this, but at a whopping +255 on the ML, I think it's worth a shot on the Blackhawks. They will either win the game or get blown out. So I'll take the massive number, as I think the Stars are a bit fake.