Picks: Caps Look to Rebound vs. Leafs

Updated: November 22, 2009 at 9:53 am by Brock Seguin

4-7: Just more proof of NHL bettors’ frustration!  Two -200 favourites were upset last night in games they should’ve won.  Some good matchups on the night as we try to get back on track!  

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Calgary Flames -110 at Los Angeles Kings -110

There might be trouble brewing in Calgary.  The Flames have come up flat in 3 of their last 4 games against much tougher opponents than they had faced in their previous 4 games.  There’s talk about Brent Sutter feuding with Dion Phaneuf and Rene Bourque has just been placed on IR.  The Kings are struggling a bit on their own but take the advantage at home.  They average a league-best 3.9 goals per game and second-best home powerplay.  The Flames have shown some good road defense, at 2.3 goals allowed per game, but don’t score much, only averaging 2.9 goals per game.  Los Angeles has only won 1 of their last 4 home games but haven’t seen an extended period of time at home since the beginning of the month – they haven’t dropped back-to-back home games yet this season.
Pick: Kings -110
Note: I’m not including this game in the fan picks because of the short voting window.

Washington Capitals -130 at Toronto Maple Leafs +110

That disaster of a performance last night for the Caps is an aberration for the number one team in the East.  They look to rebound tonight against a Leafs team that has rediscovered their losing ways and goaltending struggles.  The last time these teams met, they Caps skated all over the Leafs but ended up with just a 6-4 win and the Leafs were without Phil Kessel.  The Leafs have allowed an average of 4.4 goals per game over their 5-game losing streak and have only managed 2.6 goals per game.  The Caps, led by Alexander Ovechkin, should be able to get plenty of goals tonight and like he has all year, Phil Kessel should also find the net.
Pick: Caps -130 and Over 6.0 goals -140

Tampa Bay Lightning -115 at Carolina Hurricanes -105

The Bolts are returning from a brief road trip to the West Coast where they played relatively well against the Coyotes and Ducks.  The Canes have actually won as many games with Manny Legace and Michael Leighton starting as they did with Cam Ward starting.  They’ve won 2 of their last 4 and each game was by a 1 goal margin.  The home team has taken both meetings between these two teams this season but things could change tonight.  Both teams rank in the bottom third of offense and defense opening the door for a team’s scorers or goaltenders to step up.  The Lightning easily outrank the Canes in offensive potential and their goalies have played well over their last 5.
Pick: Bolts -115

Buffalo Sabres +115 at Ottawa Senators -135

Uh-oh.  The Sabres dropped 2 straight at home and are facing a Sens team that just pummeled the Penguins 6-2.  The Sabres played a solid game last night but fell victim to Boston’s on-again defense.  It’ll be interesting to see if Ryan Miller gets the start on back-to-back nights after a great performance last night even though he took the loss.  The Sabres haven’t lost 3 games in a row yet this season and the Senators haven’t won 3 in a row since the beginning of the season.  Ottawa dominated the Sabres 5-1 last season, winning all 3 games in Ottawa but Sabres have been a much better team this season.  They played a strong game after a loss to Florida and will likely follow up with another strong game against their division rival.
Pick: Sabres +115

New Jersey Devils -105 at Dallas Stars -115

Don’t forget that this Devils team is 9-1-1 on the road this season – despite those 2 losses coming this week.  The Devils are experiencing a rash of injuries but are still getting solid performances from their key offensive weapons but their defense has taken center stage – they’ve only gone over the game total 1 time over their last 12 games with 2 pushes (on 5.0 game totals).   The Stars are only 3-3-3 at home, 1 of their last 4 home games, only won 3 of their last 9 and gone under the game total in 7 straight.  The game total of 5.0 goals scares me here but the Devils have safely gone under or pushed a game total of 5 all 4 times they’ve seen it this season.
Pick: Under 5.0 goals +110 and Devils -105

Philadelphia Flyers -120 at Phoenix Coyotes +100

Put yesterday’s obvious outmatching aside, the Flyers are still a strong opponent in the league right now and should bounce back well after the 6-3 thrashing courtesy of the Coyotes.  Brian Boucher played well in his last start in Los Angeles and could be called on again tonight in a back-to-back situation.  The Coyotes are a far cry from their defensive superiority at the beginning of the year and are feeling the effects of losing 3 key D-men.  They allowed an average of 3.5 goals per game over their last homestand while only managing 2 goals per game.  The Flyers bring in the 7th-best road offense, 3.1 goals per game, and the 9th-best road defense, allowing 2.9 goals per game.  The Coyotes have only won 3 of their last 9 games while the Flyers are still winner of 7 of 9.
Pick: Flyers -120

Fan Favourite Record: 4-7, -3.52

Betting results by category so far this season:

  • Money Line 47-47, -8.263
  • Puck Line 7-18, -7.1
  • Game Totals 41-30-1, +5.33

Buffalo Sabres, Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes, Dallas Stars, Los Angeles Kings, New Jersey Devils, Ottawa Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, Phoenix Coyotes, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Washington Capitals