Afternoon wagerers! As expected, it was a tough night last night to find value as five of the six games were decided by one goal. The moneyline dog won three of those five, so if you jumped on those, congratulations to you.
Congratulations to the players for Team Canada as that team was announced today. Canada could probably put in three teams and have all of them playing in a medal game. The chemistry factor was huge for Stevie Y and his group. We’ll see how that plays out.
Similarly, let’s see tonight’s eight-game schedule will play out. A couple of more lopsided moneylines tonight, but some very close matchups again tonight.
MTL @ TB o5.5 (Ev)
I will preface this by saying that it looks like a tough night for bettors. This is not an ideal play, but even money is good value in a Mike Smith game (yeah, I know, he probably pitches a shutout since I’m betting against his ability again). With Carey Price expected to go, who knows what Carey Price shows up?
I think this gives good value to the over. Brian Gionta’s return should continue helping the Habs who are scoring 3.4 goals-per-game over their last five and the Lightning have been scoring at a 3.6 goal-per-game pace over their last five.
The over looks like a solid play tonight with good value.
NJ -1.5 (+200) v. PIT
After Jeff Tay put together a great piece today on some season series relevant to tonight’s games, I will start this by saying that New Jersey is 3-0 this year against Pittsburgh by an aggregate score of 12-2. In games against teams from their division, the Devils are 7-3 and allowing 1.8 goals per game.
No starter has been named for Pittsburgh as I write this, and with Fleury having gone last night, it’s possible that Brent Johnson could get the nod. Even if Fleury goes, I still like the Devils in this one. All three of those 12-2 wins are on the road where the Devils don’t get the most favorable matchup on Crosby or Malkin. Tonight, they will get the matchups they want.
New Jersey has left opposing powerplays to 6% efficiency over their last five games and if that trend continues, Pittsburgh will have a tough time scoring.
Look for the Devils to continue their dominant play over Pittsburgh.
WSH @ SJ o6 (-105)
Could this be a preview of the 2009-2010 Stanley Cup final? We shall see. In any event, the game should be played at a feverish pace as both teams are looking to make a statement tonight in the Tank. I like the over because I think that Washington will quickly realize that the only way they can win the game is to outslug San Jose on the scoreboard. Sounds obvious, right? What I mean is that whether it’s Theodore or Neuvirth, I can’t see either of them throwing a two goal game out there.
Both teams are averaging just shy of 4 goals per game over their last five and, though Nabokov has played extremely well of late, that points to a shootout at the HP Corral.
Interesting to note, if you really feel like gambling tonight, San Jose is 8-0 ATS at home against Washington since ’96. Obviously, these two teams don’t play a lot, but it’s a nice stat to have in your back pocket while you look at tonight’s bets.
Best of luck, players, and enjoy a night of sobriety before loading up tomorrow to ring in the New Year!