Picks: Kings Looking to Rebound in the Desert

Updated: November 4, 2009 at 2:01 am by Brock Seguin

3-1 yesterday and a perfect 2-0 on game totals after a less-than-stellar week of surprise finishes.  We saw the Isles take 3 straight and demolish Buffalo while the Wild have won 2 straight and won their first road game against the Pens, of all teams to get it against.  Three matchups tonight but the Eastern games feature some unfavourable matchups.  Looking for a great sportsbook site to place your bets? I use and trust Bodog to place my hockey bets but if you are looking for a site where you can bet for free, try CentSports. You always have a minimum of 10 cents to start off and let you bet on the NHL and other sports. When you increase your balance, you are eligible to cash out! Remember that I post these picks for fun and I encourage you to do the same (i.e. don’t bet what you can’t afford to lose).  All lines are provided by Bodog and are current at the time of posting.

Los Angeles Kings +110 at Phoenix Coyotes -130

Both of these teams are in the midst of turn-arounds from last season and have already played each other twice this season, exchanging wins in the other team’s home arena.  In both games, the game total went uncharacteristically over and the underdog took both matchups.  Coyotes’ stand-out goalie Ilya Bryzgalov has only allowed more than 2 goals in 3 of 11 starts this season, both against the Kings.  In 6 meetings last season, the Over-Under was 3-3 and Phoenix won 4 of them.  Things appear to be different this season but the main fact is that the Coyotes are a defense-focused team and that is their key to winning.  They have gone under in 10 of 13 games this season and won-under in 3 straight.  The Coyotes are still the toughest team to score against with 1.9 goals allowed per game.  Meanwhile, the Kings are mired in a scoring slump, only scoring 2 goals in their last 2 games, losing both.  The Kings are getting top RW Justin Williams back in the lineup after missing him for about 2 weeks but facing the best goalie in the league won’t be a welcome return.  The basic trend here is, despite the excess of scoring in their earlier matchups, the Coyotes will resort to their strong defensive play and make it difficult for the Kings to get any scoring opportunities.  Bryzgalov has played well this season and has the poise to rebound after consecutive poor starts against the Kings.
Pick: Under 5.5 goals -125 Update: Labarbera is getting the nod for the Coyotes, not Bryz.  I like that he’s facing off against his former team but this matchup now looks really good for the Kings.  I’m going Kings +110 to make trouble for their former goalie.

Betting results by category so far this season:

  • Money Line 23-28, -21.05
  • Puck Line 5-11, -5.5
  • Totals 25-15-1, +3.64

Los Angeles Kings, Phoenix Coyotes