Below are our experts’ top bets for tonight’s NHL action.
Los Angeles Kings (-115, 6.5) vs Anaheim Ducks
The Kings came out firing following the All-Star break, winning both of their games by a combined score of 11-2. The Ducks did the exact opposite, losing 3 of their 4 recent games by a combined score of 20-8, with the only win coming against the Blackhawks in overtime. The Kings won the only other matchup between these teams on December 20 by multiple goals, tallying a 4-1 win in LA. The home ice advantage won’t be huge given the close geographic distance of the two teams, but the models are showing the Kings success continuing tonight against a verifiably lesser opponent.
We like the Kings +100
New York Rangers (+100, 7) vs Edmonton Oilers
The New York Rangers are on fire as they head to Edmonton to take on the Oilers. The Rangers have won six in a row, are 8-1-1 in their past 10 games. Edmonton was red hot before the All-Star break, winning seven of eight, but the break did not serve them well as they are 2-1-1 since then.
Since acquiring Vladimir Tarasenko, it seems as if the Rangers have been unstoppable. New York has always had a hard time driving play and the hope is that Tarasenko will change that. The Rangers are 20th in expected goals with a 50.32 xGF%. The Rangers excel defensively and are only allowing 2.65 goals per game. They also rank 13th in expected goals against.
With such a wonderful offensive arsenal, the Oilers are one of the best offensive teams in the league. They rank seventh in even strength expected goals with a 53.66 xGF% and are eighth in high danger chances. However, they are not nearly as good on the offensive end allowing 3.2 goals per game, while ranking 17th in expected goals against. Edmonton’s goaltending has been a question mark with their defense not helping them out much.
The Rangers excel on the power play and the Oilers penalty kill is well below average. However, at even strength, they are not great. If the Oilers can stay out of the penalty box, they should be able to win this game.
Edmonton’s ability to generate offense is terrific. It leads the league in goals per game and owns the best power play at 31%. Edmonton’s offensive firepower is just too much. Despite the Rangers hot streak, we think the Oilers should win this game tonight.
We like the Oilers at -120.