Here are Today’s NHL Picks:
Bruins @ Maple Leafs
The scene shifts to Toronto. Game 1 was all about Toronto controlling the pace of play with their speed and ability to enter and exit the zones at will. Game 2 was Boston imposing its physical will and goading Toronto to completely abandon their pace of play. Will Game 3 finally bring a mix of both that has been expected? After a prosperous weekend that saw us hit everything under the sun, it is time to get ambitious again. The risk here lies in the fact that Boston and Toronto have hit the under in both games this series. On the other hand, both sides’ top players have mostly been held in check – particularly Auston Matthews. Both teams have combined for 60+ shots in each game which indicates high-event hockey. The danger in taking the over is that if one team duds, it is tough sledding. If a team over was to be taken, side with Toronto. In the meantime, a basically even bet to take the over at 6.5 is not a bad plan.
1u – Over 6.5 Total Goals @ +105
Capitals @ Hurricanes
The theory is that the goaltending has been good but could burst at the seams. Carolina was close on Sunday and hit the Puckline +1.5 which was not a total surprise. With the next two games in Carolina, the expectation is that this relatively even series could easily wind up tied at 2 in short order. Sebastian Aho finally got into the goal scoring act during Game 2 after a rough first period. If that top line gets going from Carolina, that will set the tone for the Hurricanes and settle them into the series. This game expects to go back and forth quite a bit, but home ice creates that little bit of separation is enough to tilt the expected outcome to Carolina.
1u – CAR Hurricanes MoneyLine @ -133
Nashville @ Dallas
Does the “grind it out” series will take a break? The answer may be no. Alas, Ben Bishop is incredible at home with a 1.9 goals-against average, .937 save percentage, and six shutouts. Over the last five games, the two teams have combined to allow just 4.4 goals per game. Special teams for both squads are invisible in this series (1 for 16 combined). The question is then where do the goals come from if both goalies are playing well? Dallas, in theory, is so stingy defensively that they may be able to score just enough to placate two plays on Monday night.
1u – DAL Stars MoneyLine @ -117
1u – Under 5.5 Total Goals @ -208
Flames @ Avalanche
Colorado surprised Calgary in Game 2 with a late burst and two goals on plays that concentrated on going down the middle of the ice FAST! Did Calgary learn anything and how do they just to that dynamic from Colorado’s top line? With the games in Colorado, altitude comes into play and a slight advantage for the Avalanche. Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen started to find a rhythm in Game 2 and that spells trouble for the Calgary Flames who did not have many answers. Colorado’s question mark is how they handle Calgary’s top six. It has been a mixed bag at times. With last line change, Colorado should be able to adjust better and that will make a difference.
1u – COL Avalanche MoneyLine @ +110
1u – Over 5.5 Total Goals @ -133
By Chris Wassel