The Buffalo Sabres defense got the blown doors off them once again last night against the Lightning. The Lightning can light any team up, and the Sabres can allow any team in the league to light themselves up, so it didn’t come as much of a surprise. Luckily Tampa Bay was able to carry the load on our bet on the total. The Lightning scored 5 goals to win the game 5-1, sending the Sabres to another loss. It looked like the Sabres were about to turn this ship around, but have now lost 6 of their last 7 games. The Lightning on the other hand look primed to take control of the NHL as they continue at a pretty good clip. This will be my first NHL pick of the New Year. Let’s start 2015 off with a bang and a winner.
New Years Day always features the Winter Classic outdoors game now. It has lost a lot of its luster, but watching hockey outside is always a treat to behold. This year it is the Chicago Blackhawks taking on the Washington Capitals in Washington. The game will be taking place at the home of the Washington Nationals on a baseball diamond. Last year was a big event in Ann Arbor between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Detroit Red Wings. This season things are a little more subdued. This Winter Classic needed to compete with the college football playoff for media attention, which is a big reason there hasn’t been as much fan-fare surrounding this game. Of course, everyone has been exposed to outdoor hockey games already as well at this point as well. Let’s making some money off this event in Washington today.
Chicago Blackhawks @ Washington Capitals
The Chicago Blackhawks were long looking for their offense earlier in the year. However, as expected, they have come through with a strong surge on the offensive end. They are in a position where they set themselves up to compete for the Stanley Cup this season. Now that the offense has caught up to the defense, the Blackhawks are a team that will garner attention in 2015. After a slow start, the Hawks are now scoring an average of 3.03 goals per game. About over a month ago the Blackhawks were in the 2.5 goals a game range. Now they are 3rd in the NHL in scoring. The defense has been strong all season long. They are currently 1st in the league in defense, allowing only 2.08 goals per game. Statistically the Blackhawks have been the best team in the NHL the last month. Chicago comes into today with a record of 25-10-1-1.
The Capitals will counter with Alexander Ovechkin, who trail in both categories, but are still a worthy opponent for the Blackhawks. The Capitals upended the Blackhawks earlier in the season by a score of 3-2 in November. Washington is 13th in goals against, averaging 2.53. They also have a good offense than ranks 8th in the NHL in scoring with 2.89 goals per game. Will it be enough to beat the Blackhawks again? I think the Blackhawks will be ready for them this time. This isn’t the same team that the Capitals faced in November. The Hawks have found their stride heading into the New Year. I think they tie up the season series and get the win at Nationals Park in the NHL Winter Classic.
Pick – BLACKHAWKS TO WIN -122 @ 5dimes.eu (Best Odds)