My three free NHL picks from last night didn’t go well as my hot stretch was officially cooled.
I had the Islanders to go into Madison Square Garden and knock off the Rangers, but that just didn’t happen. In fact, the Islanders were pumped by their arch rival in this one, dropping a 6-2 decision in this one.
I also had the Flames to go into Montreal and stay hot against the cold Canadiens. That also didn’t happen as anticipated as the Flames were unable to put a goal on the scoreboard and took a 2-0 loss as a result.
Finally, I suffered an identical fate with the Hurricanes in Washington. I had the ‘Canes to upset the Caps in that one, but they too failed to generate any goals and we lost a 2-0 decision here as well.
It was a tough night indeed, but those nights are going to happen in a long NHL season, and we’ve had very, very few of those nights in what’s been a wildly productive season.
Now, let’s turn out attention to tonight’s big 11-game NHL schedule!
Season Record: 75-63-1
Now let’s take a look at this free NHL pick featuring the Stars vs. Avalanche from Colorado!
Stars vs. Avalanche Betting Odds
- Stars (+125)
- Avalanche (-138)
- Stars +1.5 (-205)
- Avalanche -1.5 (+175)
- Over 5.5 (+113)
- Under 5.5 (-125)
Stars vs. Avalanche NHL Pick Breakdown
Now let’s take a look at each of these clubs before getting into my final pick!
The Stars enjoyed another lengthy win streak to vault them ahead of the Avalanche into the second spot in the Central Division behind only the St Louis Blues who are running away with the division at the moment.
Dallas won six straight games but we cooled off by the San Jose Sharks on Saturday on the road with a 2-1 loss in that one.
Despite the loss, the Stars stayed stingy on the back end, allowing just two goals or less for the seventh straight game.
That run of stout defense has the Stars sitting first with just 2.33 goals against per game on the season overall and tied for fourth with 2.68 goals against per game on the road.
Their offense was solid, yet unspectacular during the winning streak, scoring 3.33 goals per game during that stretch, but has scored just 2.64 goals per game on the road this season to rank 19th in that category.
Of course, that offense was cooled on Saturday with a one-goal showing and zero goals at even-strength play.
Despite being outshot by an average of 5.4 shots per game on the road, the Stars sport some impressive advanced metrics.
At 5v5 on the road, they rank 26th with a Corsi For% of 46.14%, but it’s all gravy from there.
They also rank sixth with a 50.68% Scoring Chances For%, third with a 51.99% High-Danger Chances For% and ninth with a .926 Sv% at 5v5 on the road.
Looking to keep that solid road goaltending going tonight will be Ben Bishop who is enjoying another productive season between the pipes for the Stars.
Bishop sports a 2.24 GAA and .928 Sv% on the season across 29 starts.
However he slips a bit to a 2.93 GAA and .905 Sv% on the road in 10 starts while he’s been brilliant with a 1.91 GAA and .939 Sv% at home in 19 starts.
Still, he owns a 1.00 GAA and .967 Sv% over his last two starts and has allowed just four goals over his last three starts.
The Avalanche have struggled to find their footing of late, losing each of their last three games, most recently a 4-3 overtime loss to the Penguins on home ice.
The Avs have also dropped four of their last five games at home where they’re now 11-7-3 on the season.
Don’t blame the offense, though.
The Avalanche enter this one ranked third with 3.86 goals per game on the season at home where their power play ranks sixth with a 25% clip.
Despite losing four of their last five at home, the Avalanche have scored at least three times in all five of those games and have averaged 4.20 goals per game during that stretch.
That must mean the problem is on defense. In fact, the Avs have had defensive issues at home for the most part this season.
They will enter this one ranked 28th with 3.33 goals against per game at home where the penalty kill has also struggled with a 78.7% mark, good for a share of 22nd league wide.
It’s been a combination for poor defensive play and poor goaltending as well as the Avalanche have received an .895 Sv% from their netminders at home this season, good for a share of 24th league wide.
It will be up to Philipp Grubauer to buck that trend tonight.
Grubauer enters this one sporting a 2.92 GAA and .909 Sv% on the season, but also owns a 3.11 GAA and .901 Sv% on home ice as well where he’s gone just 6-5-1 on the campaign.
He’s failed to get hot in January to this point, posting a 3.03 GAA and .894 Sv% in three starts and most recently allowed four goals on 28 shots (.857 Sv%) in a loss to the Rangers in New York one week ago today.
After a team enjoys a lengthy winning streak, the hockey gods tend to even things out.
After being cooled off by the Sharks in the third game of a four-game road trip, this is a tough team to bounce back against.
There’s little doubt that the Stars’ defense is among the very best groups in the league – and John Klingberg will return to the lineup tonight – but this is a deadly Avalanche offensive team.
It’s also about time they get things turned around themselves. They have had three full days off without any travel involved, so their legs should certainly be there against a Stars team that’s almost a full week on the road with this being their fourth stop.
While the Stars sit on top at the moment, I believe this Avalanche team is the superior team of the two, and I like a rested Avalanche team to knock off a Stars team that was just cooled off.
Give me the home side on the moneyline tonight.