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Market Report for Thursday, November 3rd
Recap: No action on Wednesday. Nothing to report.
Wins: 20 Losses: 18 Units Won: + 3.26 units ROI: 8.7 percent
I’m tracking all my plays on Betstamp: a third party bet tracking app. The bets reveal themselves after the games start. I keep my own personal records as well and they may differ slightly from Betstamp due to several factors, but for the most part, it should line up closely.
Today: The NHL is serving up 13 matchups on Thursday.
Today’s Bets: Carolina Hurricanes +110, Los Angeles Kings -170, Calgary Flames Regulation -120 and -1.5 (+135), Vegas Golden Knights -140, Seattle Kraken +160
All game lines via DraftKings Sportsbook and BetMGM Sportsbook, but I will sometimes use the consensus odds from the VSiN NHL Odds page if it is a better price and widely available. All recommended bets will be accompanied by recommended stake size. All stats via Evolving Hockey and Natural Stat Trick.
Los Angeles Kings (-170) at Chicago Blackhawks (+150)
Los Angeles is playing their fourth game in six days, which isn’t a great spot to be in, especially on the road, but it helps that their opponents are in a similar position. The Blackhawks haven’t been on the road like the Kings, but they’ve lost four in a row and their top defenseman (Seth Jones) is sidelined with an injury and it looks like they’re going to be relying on their third-string goaltender. Petr Mrazek is expected to be out until the middle of November due to a groin injury, and backup Alex Stalock is reportedly out with a concussion. That means Arvid Soderblom will likely be in goal on Thursday. The Kings aren’t a complete team, but they’re well-structured and their scoring rates appear to be trending upward as only six teams have scored more goals per 60 minutes at five-on-five. The Blackhawks are a bottom-five team offensively and rank 30th in shot attempt percentage. Goaltending might end up being a sore spot for the Kings this season if Jonathan Quick’s resurgence last season was an aberration, but there’s no doubt that goaltending is a problem for the Blackhawks, and my model prices the Kings closer to -195.
Bet: Los Angeles Kings -170 Stake: 1.7 units to win 1 unit
Nashville Predators (+155) at Calgary Flames (-175)
The Flames lost their second home game in a row earlier this week when they blew a multi-goal lead to the Kraken. Backup goaltender Dan Vladar stated that game. That means Jacob Markstrom is fresh for this game. The Predators, on the other hand, have lost seven of their last eight games. Juuse Saros took the (7-4) loss in Edmonton on Tuesday, and he will likely start on Thursday, but there’s a small chance the Predators could go turn to backup Kevin Lankinen. It seems unlikely that head coach John Hynes would pick a game against the Flames to start Lankinen, but you never know. Either way, the Flames should be priced a lot higher than -190, and therefore, I can justify betting the Flames win in regulation (60-minute line) at -120 and to cover the -1.5 goals at +135.
Bet: Calgary Flames (Regulation) -120 Stake: 1.2 units to win 1 unit
Bet: Calgary Flames (-1.5 goals) +135 Stake: 0.5 units to win 0.67unit
Carolina Hurricanes (+110) at Tampa Bay Lightning (-130)
Victor Hedman missed Tuesday’s game versus the Senators, but let’s assume he plays on Thursday against Carolina. It’s a safe bet, considering he’s listed as day-to-day, and judging by the current odds, it certainly looks like the market believes he will play. This game would be a pick ‘em otherwise. Carolina is arguably the best team in the league, and they’re a lot deeper than Tampa Bay. The Lightning have a better starting goaltender, but the gap between Andrei Vasilevskiy and Frederik Andersen isn’t that big.
Bet: Carolina Hurricanes +110 Stake: 1 unit to win 1.1 units
Vegas Golden Knights (-140) at Ottawa Senators (+120)
Ottawa is back home after an unsuccessful trip to Florida. The Senators went 0-2 against the Lightning and Panthers and while they managed to keep the score close, it was a good reminder of just how far behind this team is. The Senators are good offensively, and that’s reason enough to bet on them now and again, but they’re bad defensively (only five teams allow more shots) and they take far too many minor penalties. Vegas has some work to do on offense if they want to be as good as some of the other top teams in the league, but they grade out incredibly well through the lens of expected goals. Goaltender Anton Forsberg was faced 91 shots combined in the Senators’ last two games, and he’s likely going to get peppered by Vegas on Thursday.
Notes: The Senators have stated that goaltender Cam Talbot could return as early as Saturday.
Bet: Vegas Golden Knights -140 Stake: 0.7 units to win 0.5 units
Seattle Kraken (+160) at Minnesota Wild (-180)
Seattle has played well so far this season. The Kraken’s expected goal share sits at roughly 54.5 percent at even strength. Only seven teams are ahead of them in that category. They’re still a break-even team thanks to poor goaltending, though, and that’s probably not going to change anytime soon. That’s more than I can say about Minnesota, though. Seattle is still in danger of being a bottom-10 team on defense (they currently rank 22nd in goals against per 60 minutes at even strength) but only three teams have allowed more goals than the Wild and they’re playing their third game in four days. The home team will win the game around 59.5 percent of the time, according to my model, which means the Kraken are a decent bet at +160.
Bet: Seattle Kraken +160 Stake: 0.5 units to win 0.8 units
Washington Capitals (-120) at Detroit Red Wings (EVEN)
I had hope that the Capitals would be able to overcome injuries to Tom Wilson and Nicklas Backstrom, but now that they’ve also lost Connor Brown, T.J. Oshie and John Carlson to injury, I’m less optimistic. Even the loss of 24-year-old Beck Malenstyn, who has stood out as a serviceable player, is a bummer. The Capitals don’t look good through the lens of modern hockey statistics, and while it is counterintuitive to what I preach here on daily basis, I think the Capitals are a solid hockey team. That’s what I think, though, and my model disagrees. The Capitals have some tough games coming up after this one in Detroit and the next on versus Arizona, but they can’t afford to look past either of these teams. Detroit isn’t at full strength (they’re missing two of their top forwards) but they’ll probably go back to goaltender Ville Husso after Alex Nedeljkovic allowed eight goals in Buffalo on Monday. I likely won’t have a bet on this game.
Boston Bruins (+110) at New York Rangers (-130)
Igor Shesterkin is confirmed to start for the Rangers, while Linus Ullmark is likely going to get the nod for the Bruins. However, with Jeremy Swayman injured, there’s a slight chance that we could see Keith Kinkaid in goal for Boston. I don’t think it’s going to happen, but then again, there isn’t really a good spot to give Ullmark a break until closer to the middle of the month so the Bruins could be forced into a situation where their chances of beating a tough opponent are far worse than they’d usually be. Boston could get forward David Krejci back, though, and that would give them a big boost. There could be some value betting on Boston, assuming Krejci returns and Ullmark starts, but I want to hear the team confirm that before I place a wager.
Montreal Canadiens (+175) at Winnipeg Jets (-200)
Samuel Montembeault will start in goal for the Canadiens on Thursday in Winnipeg. The 26-year-old goaltender has a .931 save percentage so far this season, but he’s only played three games and his .894 career save percentage holds more weight. The only way I will consider betting on the Canadiens in this game is if the Jets start backup David Rittich. I don’t think that’s going to happen, though. Starter Connor Hellebuyck doesn’t like to take many games off, and Rittich just played on Oct. 28th. Hellebuyck stopped 46 of 48 shots on Tuesday and stole a point for the Jets in their loss to the 2-1 overtime loss to the Golden Knights and I’m guessing the team wants to go out and put forth a better effort for him on Thursday. Winnipeg will win the game approximately 67.4 percent of the time which converts to fair odds of around -205.
New York Islanders (EVEN) at St. Louis Blues (-120)
St. Louis has lost five games in a row and starting goaltender Jordan Binnington has allowed 11 goals in his last two starts. The 29-year-old has posted a .882 save percentage in six games this season. He’ll probably start on Thursday against the Islanders, too, given that the team will play three games over the next four days. But if head coach Craig Berube thinks Thomas Greiss is a better option right now, he might choose to do things the opposite way. Some bettors might look at this as a buy low spot on the Blues, and it is. But that doesn’t mean they’re a good bet. The Islanders grade out as a better team in every category right now, and the team has started to catch up with their goaltending. Only the Boston Bruins have scored more goals than the Islanders have at five-on-five. I can’t believe it either. My model still prices the Blues as a tiny favorite, though, and so I’m going to ignore my gut instinct to bet on the Islanders. My model and my gut will align if their odds increase by 10-15 cents.
New Jersey Devils (+135) at Edmonton Oilers (-155)
Folks on Hockey Twitter can hype up the Devils hot start and act as if their early season success should have been expected, but they likely don’t have skin in the game. The Devils didn’t play any teams of note until a couple of weeks in, so figuring out what’s real and what isn’t has been a bit of a long process. New Jersey is likely going to be one of the teams that I was most wrong about, but I think my model is starting to catch up. My assessment of a game between these two teams would have been very different at the start of the season. Now, I know the gap isn’t as wide as I thought it was. New Jersey ranks as the top team by expected goals, which is not something anyone saw coming. For this game, my model has generated fair odds of -150 in favor of the Oilers. I wouldn’t be surprised if they outplayed the Oilers on Thursday in Edmonton, but I’d still consider betting on the latter if the market moves enough toward the former.
Dallas Stars (-190) at Arizona Coyotes (+170)
Arizona picked up their first win of the season at their new home, Mullet Arena, on Tuesday with a 3-1 win over the Florida Panthers, and believe it or not, there a profitable team despite winning just three out of nine games. Stars’ goaltender Jake Oettinger is currently on the shelf due to an injury, leaving Scott Wedgewood to guard the cage, and that puts the Coyotes in a better position to win the game than they would have been otherwise. However, my model still suggests Dallas should be priced around -200, so I doubt I’ll be betting on this game.
Anaheim Ducks (+135) at Vancouver Canucks (-165)
Two of the worst teams in the NHL go head-to-head on Thursday, but first the Ducks and Canucks will honor former player (and my former co-worker) Kevin Bieksa. The current Hockey Night in Canada analyst is signing a one-day contract with the Canucks so that he can retire as a member of the franchise. If only he could suit up and play. Vancouver was able to rattle of a couple of wins in a row, but they couldn’t keep it going. The Canucks lost 5-2 to the Devils on home ice earlier this week. Anaheim is arguably the worst team in hockey right now, ranking 31st in goals, 29th in expected goals and 28th in shot attempts, but the Canucks aren’t far behind. There’s a little bit of value on Vancouver, but both teams are a lot worse than I thought they’d be and I’m not all that confident of my assessment of this game.
Florida Panthers (-210) at San Jose Sharks (+185)
More details to come.
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