Predators vs. Flyers NHL Pick – December 20th

The Philadelphia Flyers picked up a win in their game without Dave Hakstol behind the bench. Scott Gordon has taken over as the interim head coach in Philadelphia and it was a good debut for him against the Red Wings. The next months are critically important for Gordon, as he hopes to catch on as the full-time head coach of the Flyers for next season. The Flyers will do their due diligence and look at other options, but if Gordon turns this team around in the second-half he’s almost certainly going to be the main guy in Philadelphia.

Another guy who has an important stretch of games ahead of him is goaltender Carter Hunt. Hunt recently got called up from Lehigh after a rash of injuries to Brian Elliott, Michal Neuvirth, Alex Lyon, and Anthony Stolarz. The situation is even uglier than what happened to the Vegas Golden Knights last season.

I do not believe they had to go this deep into their goaltending arsenal. Marc-Andre Fleury and Malcolm Subban got injured, triggering the promotion of Oscar Dansk and Maxime Lagace. The Flyers are five deep at the moment with the 20-year-old Carter Hunt in net.

Hunt earned the first start of the game against the Red Wings. He didn’t have to do anything super special, he faced just 22 shots. However, stepping in on short notice to go and win an NHL game in his first ever start is mighty impressive. Now that win No. 1 is out of the way, Hart will be looking for his second this evening against the Nashville Predators. He shouldn’t expect it to come as easy as it did against the Red Wings, though this could be a massive confidence boost if he can score a victory against a Stanley Cup contender on Thursday. Head below for our free Predators vs. Flyers pick.

Nashville Predators vs. Philadelphia Flyers Pick

The Flyers needed a change at head coach and they did it before this season got too far out of hand. I think the only person who thought he shouldn’t have gotten fired is Hakstol himself. This season was beginning to get lost, but we’ll see if the coaching change makes an impact. Beating the Red Wings doesn’t exactly change anything. We’re going to have to wait two or three months to see where they are then.

The Flyers enter with a record of 13-15-4 for 7th in the Metropolitan. There is still a lot of time to turn things around, so the decision was made at the right time. Gordon inherits a team who have gotten slaughtered defensively. If they have any chance of making a comeback, the blue line has to get patched up. The goaltending will have to improve tenfold as well. Hunt played well against the Red Wings, but let’s keep things in perspective for now.

Philadelphia rank 29th in the NHL with 3.69 goals per game. Part of that has been poor play from the defence, as well as the goaltending. They’ve allowed 4.2 goals per game in their past ten games despite the 3-2 win against the Wings.

The Preds enter on the heels of two straight losses, both on the road against the Senators and Blackhawks. Certainly not something to be proud of, but it will happen over the course of a long season. Nashville still owns the best defence in the league with 2.49 goals allowed per game. They’re also tied for 1st with the Jets and Flames for 1st in the Western Conference. Expect Hunt to get taken to letdown city by Smashville this evening. After a nice debut against the Wings, the Predators remind him that it’s not always going to be that simple. I’d take the Preds at this price.

The Bet
PREDATORS
Kyle E / Author

Kyle is a veteran of The Sports Geek and has spent nearly a decade providing accurate sports picks and writeups here. He has been a sports handicapper for 10+ years and started sharing his picks and thoughts in 2011 at The Sports Geek. His expertise spans across multiple sports, including the NFL, NCAAF, MLB, and the NHL. Prior to writing for The Sports Geek, Kyle was a fantasy football expert, who ultimately parlayed it into a successful sports betting career. You can find his picks daily at The Sports Geek.