The Nashville Predators and Philadelphia Flyers meet for a rematch from the 10th. In that one the Predators won an entertaining affair, edging the Flyers out by a score of 6-5 in Nashville. The Flyers get the Preds at home this time around, where they haven’t lost yet. Both enter with similar records of 3-2-1 for the Predators and 4-2-0 for the Flyers.
The Predators came awfully close to winning the Stanley Cup a year ago. In fact, two games away, before the Penguins closed them out and won in six games. Are the Preds a threat to get back to the finals? For some people, the Predators blew their chance when they had it. For others, they gathered experience to make another run at it again this year.
There are four or five teams ahead of the Predators, if we’re going by bookmakers odds to win the Stanley Cup. I think that’s about right, and the Preds have a really good chance of getting out of the west alive. There aren’t too many teams in the Western Conference who get me excited. Everyone seems to be on a downward slope.
The Blackhawks aren’t getting any better, the Blues always choke, and who knows with the Kings and Oilers. That leaves the Predators who might have a case for reaching the Stanley Cup Finals again. Despite the slow start for the Oilers, they’re trending up, but other than that, all of the talent is in the Eastern Conference. The Flyers are just trying to keep up in an ultra-competitive environment out there in the east. They are slated as +4000 underdogs to win the Stanley Cup, so don’t hold your breath Flyer fans. Head below for our free NHL betting pick for Thursday.
Nashville Predators vs. Philadelphia Flyers Pick
The Flyers have been scoring the puck extremely well thus far this season. Since the matchup against the Predators, they’ve scored 13 goals. The Preds bit them by a goal, 6-5, but the offence still managed to put up big numbers. In other words, the Flyers have scored an average of 6 goals in their last three games. In seven of their last games, dating back to last year, the Flyers have scored at least 3 goals. On the year, they are 2nd in the league with 4.33 goals per game.
The only team ahead in the goal scoring department are the Maple Leafs. Gostisbehere has gotten off to a fast start with a goal and 9 assists. He hit a hole in 2016-17, but looks motivated to prove it was a fluke. Sean Couturier has been playing great hockey paired with Giroux and Voracek. Note that he’s scored 4 goals and 3 assists with an impressive rating of +9.
Nashville have scored at least 4 goals in three of their last four games. They’re averaging 3 goals per game thus far on the year. Before all else, though, the Preds have to ascertain a way to counter the Flyers’ offence. In five of their last six meetings they’ve scored at least 3 goals on them. In their last four meetings, the Flyers have averaged 4 goals per game. There should be 7 or so goals in this game, so I recommend a play on the OVER.
PICK: OVER 5.5 (-110)