As the fall turns to winter across North America, many NHL teams are finding themselves cooling off after great starts this season. This weekend proved once again that the NHL is unpredictable at best, and while we had a pretty good weekend for picks, we still see some trends emerging for NHL betting this coming week. Here’s a quick summary:
The Blackhawks are broken
Although we thought eh coaching change in Chicago was going to give them a spark this weekend, the exact opposite was true.
The Hawks made Philadelphia goalie Brian Elliot look more like Bernie Parent (look it up, millennials) and route to being shutout 4-0 on Saturday afternoon.
If the team doesn’t start turning things around soon, we could see the start of a dismantling of the perennial Cup favorites.
Are the penguins fixed?
Another team that found itself on the hot seat was the perennial Cup favorite from the East, the Pittsburgh Penguins. After being called out by their GM after a 5 game losing skid, the Penguins turned it around with a convincing 4-0 win against a rather unconvincing opponent in the Arizona Coyotes.
While this wasn’t exactly a heavyweight tilt, the bottom line is that the Pens stopped the bleeding and stopped a parade of goals going into their net over the last couple of weeks. This team is too talented to be bad for long, so we expect big things from the Pens over the coming week or two.
The Leafs were falling in Boston
Ok, that was really just for the sake of writing the pun, as the Leafs continue to be playing some good hockey as a whole. However, their results in Boston against the Bruins continue to be horrible, this time with a 5-1 loss on Saturday night.
Yes, the Leafs were tired after playing on Friday night, but there is something about playing in Boston since they choked a Game 7 in the playoffs in 2013 that just seems to have stuck with the team.
The Bruins are playing some great hockey of late, with David Pasternak leading the way (he had a hat trick against the Leafs).
A Tampa Bay Letdown
The Lightning was playing some great hockey and mainly in part to the class of the league from a goaltending standpoint, Andrei Vasielevkiy. Earlier this season, we predicted that he could be the league MVP and he was showing signs of being a front-runner for the award until this past Saturday.
Insert link to award prediction article
The Ottawa Senators are quickly becoming this years “pesky” team – one that doesn’t realize they aren’t supposed to be this good and are always hanging around in games longer than opposing teams would like.
This past Saturday, the Sens reeled off 4 unanswered goals in the third period to storm back for a 6-4 win. Now, this is not all on the Tampa Bay goalie, and every goalie has a bad game or two during a season. It may be a good time for the Lightning to turn to backup Louise Domingue for a couple of games to give their star a rest.
The Kings do not look Royal
Wow. What a lackluster effort by the Los Angeles Kings on home ice on Saturday. An early goal by Travis Hamonic proved to be all that the Calgary Flames needed as they cruised to a 1-0 win over the slumping Kings.
To make matters worse, it appears that the Kings backup-turned-starting goalie Jack Campbell was injured in the game, leaving the Kings without many options in goal. Bettors likely didn’t expect this game to be so low scoring, and those who felt it was going to go over 5.5 goals, would have been very disappointed as the game wore on.
This Kings team has some aging talent on it, and it may be the right time to find some new homes for some of these assets before they are not worth anything in return.
With Jonathan Quick out for another few weeks after meniscus surgery, this could be a write-off season for Los Angeles, which means the time is not to send players like Ilya Kovalchuk and Jeff Carter to teams that could use the shot in the arm. Chicago may find themselves interested in boosting their roster and have some young talent that could be sent back the other direction.
Once again, this weekend proved to be an exciting one, and with the prospect of a cold winter ahead for fans in most NHL cities, now is the time to hunker down and watch a lot of great NHL action. We’ll be looking for the best betting trends and angles for you and will bring you our picks for this weekend later this week.