It was another beautiful night with my trio of free NHL picks and we came within an overtime goal of netting another massive night.
The first winner of the night came in St. Louis where I had the Panthers as +140 road underdogs to upset the Blues.
The Blues opened the scoring, but the Panthers scored two answered goals to account for all the scoring in a 2-1 Florida, a win that pulled them to within one point of the Maple Leafs for third spot in the Atlantic.
I also had the Jets to win a crucial game over the Coyotes as -123 favorites on home ice.
The Coyotes actually scored the first two goals of this game and took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission.
However, it was all Jets from there as they would go on to score four unanswered goals while Connor Hellebuyck stayed hot in turning aside 36 of 38 shots en route to a 4-2 Jets win.
Finally, I had the Oilers as -119 home favorites to win a monumental clash with the Golden Knights with first place on the line.
The Oilers led 1-0 and 2-1 in this one, but were also getting heavily outshot and even trailed 23-3 in that department midway through the second.
It eventually caught up with them as the Golden Knights tied the game at two and took it to overtime where Shea Theadore’s blast won it for the road side, and deservedly so.
Nonetheless, I’ll take the 2-1 night as well as the 1.21 units in profit and move onto this eight-game Tuesday night schedule!
Season Record: 112-94-1
Now let’s dive into this free NHL pick featuring the Predators vs. Canadiens from Montreal!
Predators vs. Canadiens Betting Odds
- Predators (-105)
- Canadiens (-105)
- Predators -1.5 (+228)
- Canadiens +1.5 (-268)
- Over 5.5 (+108)
- Under 5.5 (-119)
Predators vs. Canadiens NHL Pick Breakdown
Now let’s check in with each of these clubs before I get into my final pick!
After spinning their wheels for much of the season, the Predators have played better hockey of late and will bring a modest two-game win streak into this one tonight.
In fact, both wins have over the Central rival Dallas Stars while the Predators allowed precisely zero goals in each of those two games despite scoring just three of their own.
That’s not to say that the Preds’ have displayed stout defense all season long.
They’ve improved for sure, but they still rank 18th with 3.15 goals against per game on the season away from home where their penalty kill as been absolutely atrocious with a 70.8% mark that sits 30th in the league.
That penalty kill has been a whole lot better of late, going 19 for 20 (95%) over their last seven games.
While they don’t bring a hot offense into action, their road offense has been among the best in the business.
Nashville’s 3.24 goals per game on the road this season sits fourth in the league while their road power play sits 12th with a quality 20% mark and is far superior to their power play on home ice.
Despite a lack of offense of late, that power play has gone 4 for 11 (36.4%) over their three games and has actually accounted for all four of their goals during that time.
The Preds don’t exactly thrive at 5v5 however, as per their possession metrics on the road.
At 5v5 on the road, the Predators rank 17th with a 48.47% Corsi For%, 16th with a 48.28% Scoring Chances For% and 21st with a 46.26% High-Danger Chances For%.
Not crippling numbers, but certainly nothing to write home about, either.
The Predators have received some excellent 5v5 goaltending on the road, however, where their .931 Sv% checks in at fourth. It would appear staying out of the penalty box would benefit this club.
Looking to shut the door in this one will be Juuse Saros who seems to be entering this one rather hot.
I mean, the guy rattled off back-to-back shutouts of the Stars his last two times out and has simply been scorching hot dating even further back.
Over his last seven starts, all Saros has done is work to a .948 Sv% while five of those seven starts. He stopped a combined 70 shots in his back-to-back shutouts of Dallas last week.
The Habs are playing out the remainder of another lost season in Montreal and will bring a two-game losing streak with them into action.
They were outplayed and largely outscored during the two games in a trip through Florida as they lost those games by a combined 8-1 score and were outshot 66-54 in the process.
Now they’ll return home to the Bell Centre where they just haven’t been very good this season and where they can point some of the blame for their failures here in 2019-20.
The Habs are just 14-6-6 at home this season, meaning they’ve actually lost eight more games at home than they’ve won. Those 14 home wins are the second-fewest in the NHL and just two more than the historically-poor Red Wings who have 12.
Offense has been hard to come by at home as the Canadiens rank 26th with 2.75 goals per game at home on the season where their power play has struggled mightily to the tune of a 12.6% clip, good for 30th league wide.
Furthermore, that power play has been ice cold of late, going 0 for 16 over their last nine games.
Their work at the other end of the ice hasn’t been any prettier has the Canadiens sit 26th with 3.14 goals against per game at home and 23rd with a 79% penalty kill at home as well.
Their special teams have hurt, of course, because the Canadiens are actually a quality 5v5 possession team at home.
At 5v5 at home, the Canadiens rank second with a 55.74% Corsi For%, fourth with a 56.96% Scoring Chances For% and also fourth with a 57.37% High-Danger Chances For%.
Not helping their cause, however, has been a .913 Sv% at 5v5 on home ice, which puts them 23rd in the league in that department.
It will be veteran Carey Price looking to buck that trend tonight as he gets back in the crease after Charlie Lindgren started their 4-1 loss in Florida their last time out.
Price has been solid, yet unspectacular in posting a 2.77 GAA and .909 Sv% on the season, but his work at home has been subpar as he owns a 2.87 GAA and .902 Sv% in 30 Bell Centre starts on the season.
After a huge January and a mostly solid February, Price has fallen off of late to the tune of a 1-2-1 record to go along with a .876 Sv% over his last four starts, allowing four goals in each of those three losses in that time.
While desperation never guarantees success, this should absolutely be a desperate Predators team at the moment.
It is an absolutely jam-packed race for Wild Card spot in the west and the Predators can grab one of those spots with two points in this one tonight. They cannot do that with one point.
So, two points are essentially a must in all games moving forward, but especially tonight against a slumping team that sits well outside of the playoff picture.
I am going to bet on desperation tonight.
Not just that, but also the scorching-hot goaltending of Juuse Saros while Carey Price’s work of late has certainly trended in the opposite direction. The Predators no doubt have the goaltending advantage.
They also have the offense advantage and the power play advantage, with authority in both cases.
The Preds’ penalty kill has struggled on the whole, but as mentioned has dominated of late and will take on an ice-cold Canadiens power play.
The Canadiens will again be without Jonathan Drouin again tonight and leading scorer Tomas Tatar is once again questionable with an upper-body injury.
They’ve certainly missed Tatar as they’ve scored just once in the two games he’s missed.
Nonetheless, even with Tatar potentially back in the lineup, I don’t like Montreal’s offensive chances against this white-hot goaltender while I like the potent Predators road offense to get to a weak Canadiens home defense and a struggling Carey Price.
Add it up and I will take the road side on the moneyline in this one tonight.