NHL Betting Preview: Thursday, March 25
With only eight weeks remaining in the NHL regular season, teams are in dire need of points if they want the opportunity to battle for the Stanley Cup come summertime.
Saturday is stuffed with eleven games on the schedule as the homestretch is in sight.
Let’s take a look at this week’s NHL Betting Preview filled with intense, top-tier matchups.
The downfalling Philadelphia Flyers play host to the New York Rangers in a crucial matchup in the East division. The Flyers find themselves outside of the playoff picture after a solid initial start to the season.
New York is in a groove as of late as it looks to leapfrog Philadelphia following the two-game series. The return of Artemi Panarin has ignited this Rangers team that were an afterthought for the playoffs only a couple of weeks ago.
Sorry Flyers fans, the move is to take the team playing better hockey at this point in the season, and it is the Rangers at this juncture. Adding to that, the Rangers have a plus-12 goal differential compared to the Flyers minus-14 heading into the series.
Play: Rangers Moneyline
A heavy-weight bout between the Vegas Golden Knights and Colorado Avalanche will take place at Ball Arena on Saturday afternoon. The Avalanche are 7-0-1 in their past eight games, propelling them into the West division's second seed.
The Knights have been the staple-point of the division for the entirety of the season, but the Avalanche are right on their heels. These teams have been treated to high-quality goaltending this season as Marc-Andre Fleury and Philipp Grubauer should be in Vezina Trophy discussions.
A difficult decision looms, but Colorado has the hot-hand and home-ice advantage. Expect Colorado to continue to roll in a big win over Vegas.
Pick: Avalanche Moneyline
The top teams in the Central division go head-to-head in a battle between Tampa and Carolina.
Tampa has started to separate itself from the rest of the division with a five-point cushion. The Lightning currently lead the series 3-2 and have won the last three meetings.
Carolina’s elite defense allows it to keep this game low-scoring. None of the previous five tilts went over six total goals, and there have been three combined shutouts in the season series.
Keeping these stats in mind, Carolina will try to muck-up the neutral zone as much as possible to keep Tampa from getting comfortable in the offensive zone.
Play: Under 5.5 or 6.5 goals
The recent surge of the Edmonton Oilers has the Toronto Maple Leafs searching for more points. These two clubs will meet with a critical two points on the line. The Leafs have had the upper-hand on counterpart Edmonton so far, leading the series 5-2.
Toronto has held the Oilers to a measly one goal in the previous three contests. If there is a current trend that should be broken, it’s the aforementioned. The duo of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl will be out for vengeance, and they usually get their way.
The Leafs have struggled as of late, so Edmonton appears to be in the driver's seat come Saturday night.
Play: Oilers Moneyline, Connor McDavid over 1 point
Evan Popalis is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org
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