January 2 2014 Expert NHL Picks

January 2 2014 Expert NHL Picks

We had a great start to the New Year as our members enjoyed a Winter Classic WINNER yesterday on the Leafs to beat the Red Wings. It was a nail biter as Detroit tied the game with a little over 5 minutes to go in the 3rd. The game went to a shootout where Joeffrey Lupel and Tyler Bozak both scored for the Leafs cashing a nice underdog winner for us.

 

Chicago Blackhawks @ New York Islanders: OVER 6 Goals 1.96

The New York Islanders are riding high from their 5-3 victory over the Boston Bruins on New Years Eve. That makes 2 back to back wins for the Isles, as they defeated the Minnesota Wild 5-4 two days prior. There were 17 total goals scored in both victories, an average of 8.5 goals per game. The Islanders will now face the highest scoring team in the NHL tonight, the Chicago Blackhawks. The Blackhawks continue to lead the NHL in scoring, with 3.67 goals per game overall. Over their last 10 games, the Blackhawks have managed to score an average of 4.20 goals per game. The Islanders have the 2nd worst defense in the League, allowing 3.29 goals against per game (the Oilers remain the worst with 3.36 GA/G), and allow 3.68 goals against per game when they are the “underdog”. The Islanders will have a tough task stopping the Blackhawks power play as the Chicago power play is currently the 3rd best in the NHL at 24.3%, and when playing Away this number is even better (26.3%). The Islanders have the worst penalty kill in the League at 73.8%, and they take 11.8 penalty minutes per game on average. Chicago is more disciplined, taking 8.8 PIM/G. Corey Crawford will return from his injury tonight and is the confirmed starter for Chicago. Crawford has a 2.47 GAA (25th) and a .907 SV% (32nd) and has a record of 17-6-3. Evgeni Nabokov is probable for New York and has gone 8-7-5 this season, has a 2.89 GAA and a .903 SV%. The Blackhawks are ranked 3rd in the shot department, taking 33.1 shots per game overall. The Blackhawks have had 24 games go over this season, while only 18 have stayed under, and the Islanders have gone over 22 times, while 18 games remained under the total. Before their 1-0 victory over the LA Kings on Monday (best defense in the NHL with 1.98 GA/G) the Blackhawks had 3 games in a row go over the total, with 27 combined goals in those 3 games (average of 9 total goals per game). The Islanders have had back to back games go over, with 17 total goals in 2 games (as mentioned earlier). We should see quite a few goals scored tonight in New York.

 

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