A Look At A Trio Of Western Matchups On Wednesday
While Super Bowl betting odds are the focus of this week’s attention, the NHL will be back in action on Tuesday. But on Wednesday, there is a trio of matchups coming out of the Western Conference, and here is a look at a few trends to check out before heading to your sportsbook.
Kings Oilers Betting - Wednesday, 9:30 PM ET
The Kings should be favored on the road against the Oilers in this matchup of young teams, as Los Angeles is 4-1 SU in their last five trips to Edmonton. The last four meetings have gone under the posted total, and the Kings are 2-3 SU in the second half of back-to-back games. This is relevant as the Kings play Tuesday night in Minnesota.
Canucks Coyotes Betting - Wednesday, 9:30 PM ET
The Canucks also play on Tuesday night in Dallas, and they’re 2-3 SU in the second half of back-to-back games. The Coyotes are 4-1 SU in their last five against the Canucks at home, with three of those games going over the posted total. Phoenix also plays on Tuesday night, and they’re 6-6 SU in the second half of back-to-backs.
Sharks Ducks Betting - Wednesday, 10:00 PM ET
The Ducks should be favored at home as they have the night off on Tuesday, while the Sharks will be in Phoenix, and San Jose is 3-4 SU in the second half of back-to-back games. The Ducks are 3-2 SU in their last five at home against the Sharks, with three of those games going under the total, so the under is worth a bet in your sportsbook.
Those betting on Super Bowl odds will warm up with the Pro Bowl this weekend, while NHL betting players will focus on their All-Star game, which takes place on Saturday night in Raleigh, North Carolina. There are no odds or totals for the game yet, as we don’t know the teams due to the draft taking place on Friday night between Team Lidstrom (captained by Detroit’s Nicklas Lidstrom) and Team Staal (led by Carolina captain Eric Staal). Here is a look at the last few All-Star games in the NHL.
NHL All-Star Betting - Sunday, 4:00 PM ET
Despite not knowing who is on what team, one thing we can say for sure, is that it will be a shootout. Like the Pro Bowl, the NHL All-Star game is little more than an exhibition with no hitting, but the game will get competitive in the second half as no one wants to lose. There have been an average of 16.1 goals scored in the last 10 All-Star games, which have been under both the East/West and North America/World concepts. Two of the last 10 have gone to a shootout, including 2009’s 12-11 win for the East, and defense is definitely not the name of the game as the goaltenders are often left hung out to dry on breakaways.
There hasn’t been a goalie named as the All-Star MVP since 1994, when New York’s Mike Richter snatched the award, and hometown players also have a good chance to win the award if they have a great game (see Richter in New York, Alexei Kovalev in Montreal two years ago). Staal was the All-Star Game MVP in 2008, and he would be worth a sports betting wager again this year in North Carolina.
Those checking out NHL scores are gearing up for the All-Star break, which means it’s about time to start looking at the favorites for the end-of-season awards, beginning with the Hart Trophy awarded to the league’s MVP.
Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh
If not for a concussion that has kept him out for the last couple weeks, Crosby would probably run away with this award, but the rest of the league is catching up to him. Still, his 25-game point streak is the biggest thing that has happened this year and he’s pulled away from the rest of the field as the best player in the world.
Tim Thomas, Boston
A goalie hasn’t won this award since Jose Theodore in Montreal in 2001-02, but Thomas has been playing out of his mind at 36 years old after hip replacement surgery, leading the NHL in goals against, save percentage, and he’s currently tied for third in wins. Of course, he has a great defense led by Zdeno Chara in front of him, but Tuukka Rask slipped up just enough for Thomas to take his spot, and the Bruins haven’t missed a step.
Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay
Stamkos is second to Crosby in points and now leads the league in goals as the young sniper continues to improve. He’s not only utilizing his lethal one-timer, but Stamkos picks up the scrappy goals as well, and he’s one of the fastest players in the league from zone to zone. If the Lightning can win the Southeast Division, Stamkos has to be worth a look at your sports wagering sites.
NHL Betting – Weekend Trends
Super Bowl betting lines will be the big play of the weekend, but sports betting players should still keep an eye on the ice with an interesting trio of Eastern Conference matchups.
Penguins Bruins Odds (Saturday, 1:00 PM ET)
The Bruins should be favored at home in this contest, and they’re 3-2 SU in their last five at home against the Penguins, while three of the games have gone under the posted total (with an over and push as well). Pittsburgh will likely still be without captain Sidney Crosby, who has a concussion.
Rangers Canadiens Odds (Saturday, 7:00 PM ET)
The Canadiens should be the home favorites at the Bell Center, where they are 4-1 SU in their last five against the Rangers. All five of those games have gone over the posted total, and Montreal has scored six goals three times during that stretch. Both teams have Friday night off, so they should be rested for this one.
Flyers Rangers Odds (Sunday, 7:00 PM ET)
We can’t say the same about the Rangers on Sunday, when they could be home underdogs against the Flyers, one of the NHL’s best on the road. The Rangers are 4-1 SU at home in their last five against the Flyers, with three games going under the posted total, and playing the next night may not be as big a deal as you think as the Rangers are a sparkling 8-1 SU in the second half of back-to-back games this season. Still, they could be underdogs in your sports book.
NHL Betting – Top Three Players Who Could Be On The Move
Those watching NHL scores will be thinking of moves to strengthen their team ahead of the trade deadline on February 28th, and there could be some big names going elsewhere.
Jarome Iginla, Calgary
Iginla, an Alberta native, has been the captain in Calgary since 2003, and is their all-time leader in goals and points. But the Flames haven’t won a playoff series since the year he was named captain (when they went to the finals), they didn’t make it last year and are in danger of missing them again. Management said Iginla was safe, then GM Darryl Sutter was fired. Don’t be surprised if someone makes a move for “Iggy”.
Zach Parise, New Jersey
Parise is one of many players that probably want out of New Jersey after this season, and he’s likely to be moved as this is the last year of his contract. Parise has played just 12 games this year because of a knee injury and may be back in April, meaning he would be just in time for a stretch/playoff run for a team looking to add scoring.
Alex Semin, Washington
Semin is another sniper heading into the last year of his contract, and after a hot start, he has cooled off dramatically. The Capitals looked to be headed in more of a defensive direction, and they could be tempted to part ways with Semin after his awful postseason in last year’s collapse. But with his skills, the Capitals could find someone to take him, and the return from a Semin trade could boost their sports online betting odds.
Teams To Watch In The NHL In The New Year
There are two points in the NHL season where teams seem to feel renewed and ready to challenge for a playoff spot; after New Year’s Day and after the all-star break. If your sports betting preference is the NHL, then be prepared to watch the NHL scores of these up and coming teams after the New Year’s holiday.
The Panthers are not going to tear up the league and suddenly climb to the top of the Eastern Conference. But they are giving every sign that they can start climbing high enough to begin challenging for the eighth playoff spot in the conference and make the playoffs.
The Coyotes surprised the Western Conference after the trade deadline last year by rocketing up the standings and claiming one of the top playoff spots in the conference. Phoenix started off slowly this season, but they look to be ready to make their move after the New Year’s holiday.
San Jose Sharks
The Sharks have been a regular season powerhouse for many years, but after letting goaltender Evgeni Nabakov leave for Russia and a disappointing start by replacement goaltender Antti Niemi, it looked like the Sharks were in trouble. But San Jose is starting to put their game together and are ready to start challenging for a playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Columbus Blue Jackets
The Blue Jackets just have way too much talent in goal and on offense to stay out of the playoff discussion in the Western Conference. The team is only two points out of a playoff spot, and they are putting together wins on a more regular basis now.