The result wasn’t satisfactory, but my thinking was on point in last night’s Rangers moneyline pick over the Bruins at valuable +145 odds.
I detailed how the Bruins had played seven one-goal games and six overtime games of their 11 games so far, and those marks extended to eight and seven, respectively, in last night’s matchup in New York.
The team sat tied 2-2 heading into overtime before the Rangers had a 2-on-1 opportunity early in the extra frame. The cross-ice pass was broken up by Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy, who in turn sprung Brad Marchand for a game-winning breakaway tally.
I knew it was going to be a one-goal affair, and felt excellent about having the Rangers at +145 going into overtime. I’ll take that pick all day long.
Nonetheless, we’ll stick to the research and move onto this Hurricanes vs. Stars NHL pick from Dallas!
- Season Record: 11-17
- Units: -6.63
Hurricanes vs. Stars Betting Odds
- Hurricanes (-121)
- Stars (+110)
- Hurricanes -1.5 (+195)
- Stars +1.5 (-225)
- Over 5.5 (-101)
- Under 5.5 (-109)
Hurricanes vs. Stars NHL Pick Breakdown
The Hurricanes all the sudden sport a quality, balanced attack up front and the results have been solid so far.
They’ll enter this one ranked 12th with 3.20 goals per game on the season while their power play is clicking at a healthy 23.5% clip at the moment, good for 12th league wide as well.
Of course, for the last several seasons the ‘Canes have been advanced metrics darlings, and that is once again the case this time around.
At 5v5 this season, the Hurricanes rank third in scoring chances for/60, second in high-danger chances for/60 and first in the league in expected goals/60. Their 2.53 goals/60 at 5v5 this season are right in line with their 2.67 expected mark, as per Natural Stat Trick, so look for the strong offensive output to be sustained moving forward.
It’s an offense that should also get a boost tonight by way of Vincent Trocheck likely returning to the lineup. The center missed Monday’s game with a lower-body injury, but participated in Wednesday’s practise and head coach Rod Brind’Amour stated he was hopeful for Trocheck’s return tonight.
The former Panther has notched six goals and nine points in as many games to tie for second on the team in points, but it’s youngster Andrei Svechnikov leading the club with 10 points of his own while tying Trocheck for the team lead with six goals. The Hurricanes have six players with at least six points in 10 games this season while 11 different Hurricanes have scored goals in their 10 games so far.
As noted, it’s a balanced attack and one that will remain potent moving forward.
While they’ve morphed into a quality offense, the Hurricanes have long been one of the better defensive clubs in the league.
Once again, they rank 12th in the league with 2.70 goals per game on the season while their penalty kill sits in share of 14th at a solid 80.6% rate.
They’ve more or less deserved their defense fate so far, as per the advanced metrics. At 5v5, the ‘Canes rank 11th in scoring chances against/60, 15th in high-danger chances against/60 and ninth in expected goals agaisnt/60. Their 2.03 goals against/60 so far sits a little above their 1.88 expected mark, so their surface defense numbers appear to be pretty accurate, but it’s also worth noting they rank third with 25.2 shots against per game as well.
They’ve struggled some of late, however. They’ve allowed three or more goals in each of their last five games, but have also averaged 4.67 goals against over their last three, surrendering five goals or more twice in that time, once to the Blackhawks and once to the anemic Blue Jackets.
It’s a healthy group at the moment with their top-six intact, and it’s a good bet they get things turned around sooner than later.
As Petr Mrazek continues to heal up after surgery to repair a broken thumb, the starts keep coming for veteran James Reimer, although it’s been a tough go of late.
Reimer has been torched over his last two starts to the tune of an .821 Sv%, allowing 10 goals on just 56 shots in that time. His last outing came in a 6-5 win over the Blue Jackets despite Reimer yielding five goals on just 22 shots, good for an ugly .773 Sv%.
Clearly, the month of February hasn’t gone well to this point despite wins in two of three outings. Reimer posted a 1.99 GAA and .918 Sv% while winning all three of his January starts, but owns a ghastly 4.25 GAA and .854 Sv% in three turns so far in February.
Add it up and it’s a 3.13 GAA and .883 Sv% for the 32-year-old in six appearances, but Reimer has benefited for a high level of goal support, going 5-1-0 in that time.
This is a veteran with a career 2.81 GAA and .913 Sv%, and while they’re not the best numbers in the world, we can certainly look for some positive regression, especially playing behind such a strong puck-possession team like the Hurricanes.
The Stars exploded out of the gate on offense this season while their power play lit the league on fire, but it’s all coming crashing down as expected.
They’ll enter this one ranked 10th with 3.40 goals per game on the season and fourth with a 35% clip on the power play, but those marks remains unsustainable for an offense that continues to be without its best player in Tyler Seguin.
It’s an offense that’s gotten healthier with the returns of key cogs Jamie Benn and Roope Hintz, but also an offense that will be without Alexander Radulov who is dealing with a lower-body ailment.
The advanced numbers aren’t too bad, to be honest. The Stars rank 13th in scoring chances for/60, 17th in high-danger chances for/60, but also 24th in expected goals for/60. Their 2.12 goals for/60 at 5v5 this season is pretty much in line with their 2.00 expected mark, but the power play has clearly boosted the overall results.
I mean, this was a team that scored seven goals in their season-opener with the Predators and since scored seven again against the Red Wings and six against the Blue Jackets. However, they’ve managed just one goal in each of their last two games against one of the weaker defenses in the league in the form of the Chicago Blackhawks, although standout netminder Kevin Lankinen had something to do with that.
The Stars also managed just four goals in losing both ends of a two-game set with the Hurricanes in the final days of January, so they’ll at least be looking for some revenge in this one, but there’s little doubt the massive offensive regression has officially kicked it.
While the offensive boost has been nice, the Stars were always going to win on defense, the same factor that led them all the way to Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final in the fall.
The defense is once again doing yeoman’s work in surrendering just 2.40 goals per game, good for fourth-best in the league, although their 79.1% penalty kill sits 20th.
The advanced metrics largely back up their work so far. At 5v5, the Stars rank fifth in scoring chances against/60, 11th in high-danger chances against/60 and sixth in expected goals against/60. Their 1.59 goals against/60 at 5v5 is below their 1.85 expected mark, however, so perhaps there could be a small amount of regression moving forward in terms of even-strength defense.
Like the ‘Canes, the Stars are carrying a healthy group of defenders at the moment, headlined by John Klingberg and Miro Heiskanen, a couple of players who play a 200-foot game from the blueline.
They should remain one of the better defenses moving forward, to be sure.
While Anton Khudobin was out for disciplinary reasons over the last two games, rookie Jake Oettinger did a fine job in holding down the fort for the standout veteran. Tonight, however, Khudobin will get the starting nod for the home side.
One of the very best netminders in the league over the last two seasons, Khudobin is having a decent season so far, posting a 2.51 GAA and .909 Sv% across six starts, going 3-2-1 in the process.
He last started in Columbus a week ago, but allowed four goals on jus 25 shots (.840) in a losing effort while he has surrendered at least three goals in each of his last three starts.
He started both ends of the set with the Hurricanes on back-to-back nights on Jan. 30 and 31, but was torched for four goals on just 16 shots (.750 Sv%) in the opener before a far better effort the following night when he stopped 37 of 40 shots but took the shootout loss nonetheless.
With just one start over the last 11 days, Khudobin should be fresh, but perhaps a little rusty in this one tonight.
Hurricanes vs. Stars NHL Pick
You could always make a case for the Hurricanes to win hockey games.
Add up their offensive and defensive metrics and you have the very best possession team in the NHL as they lead the league in both Corsi For% at 57.67% and expected goals for% at 58.76%.
That said, the Stars are no slouch in those departments either, sitting 11th in Corsi and 12th in scoring chance share, but the ‘Canes remain the cream of the crop when it comes to analytics.
While the Stars remain one of the best defenses in the league — supported by the metrics — I’m on the Hurricanes to take their third in a row from the Stars this season.
While the Stars’ offense is healthier, it’s a cold group that is going to regress even more moving forward. Reimer’s latest showings are of some concern, but this is a fine bounce back opportunity and one I believe he’ll take advantage of.
I like the Hurricanes getting Trocheck back down the middle to solidify their center ice depth while the Stars are missing a key piece in Radulov tonight. This Stars offense is far shallower than that of their opponent tonight and I believe that will show through.
I like the price here, so give me the Hurricanes on the moneyline.