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NHL expert Chris Wassel's picks for today's hockey action

The NHL trucks onward with nine evening games Saturday night. This should be one wild slate to look at, so let’s get right to work!

Here are Today’s NHL Picks:

Philadelphia Flyers @ Toronto Maple Leafs

- Each of the last five Saturday night Toronto games have connected on the over. (Statschecker).

Philadelphia and Toronto get us started on Saturday night with the expectation of another high-scoring contest. The over has hit or pushed in the last four matchups (3-0-1 overall). In those games, Philadelphia and Toronto have combined for 35 goals (8.75 goals combined per game). Toronto just plays at an even higher tempo when “Hockey Night In Canada” is on. This is one we will keep simple as the goal projection is just above the over at 6.75 goals. Bet the over while the value is there.

1u – Over 6.5 Total Goals @ +108

Los Angeles Kings @ Montreal Canadiens

- The Los Angeles Kings have lost 17 straight games to Atlantic Division opponents.

On the surface, picking the Montreal moneyline is too easy. However, there was an even more compelling number that came over the top. It was this. Montreal is 12-4 against the spread which is the best record ATS in the NHL. The good news in this is that Los Angeles is 5-10-1 with the moneyline and 5-11 ATS (bottom five in the league in both). Carey Price is expected to start against Jonathan Quick on Saturday night and the speed of Montreal likely will be too much for Los Angeles who does have some speed but not enough. Take the line and the spread.

1u –Montreal Canadiens -1.5 goals @ +137

Columbus Blue Jackets @ Colorado Avalanche

- Colorado keeps losing players but at least Nathan MacKinnon is healthy and that is vital for the chances of the Avalanche on Saturday night. The over has connected in each of the last three meetings. (Statschecker).

Neither team has been particularly great of late. Colorado is 1-5-1 in their last seven games while Columbus is 1-3-1 in their previous five contests. The Blue Jackets have found ways to score just enough goals while Colorado averages more than 3.6 goals per game. One nice thing is the idea that a bettor can slide back a little to 5.5 goals to take a shot here at a decent number. If a gambler feels ambitious, climb up to 6 or even 6.5. However, our pick Is the 5.5 even in a battle of what is backup level goaltenders who both expect to face 30+ shots on Saturday night.

1u –Over 5.5 Total Goals @ -137

Nashville Predators @ San Jose Sharks

- The two teams have combined for 31 goals in their last four meetings while the over has gone 3-0-1 in that time.

This game pits two teams that have some dislike for each other. Nashville and San Jose faced each other in the playoffs in 2016 and it was one of the better series in a decade. The animosity never went away fully, and these two teams are entertaining offensively. Nashville games see an average of 7.3 goals per game and that expects to prop the over as San Jose is starting to slowly increase its offense as well. After a wild 6-5 home win against Minnesota, there is this one fact. San Jose has seen each of the last 10 home games after a home win have gone above the goals line. The likelihood this number stays at +130 is low. Get in while the value in this tilt is still there.

1u – Over 6.5 Total Goals @ +130

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By Chris Wassel


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