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NHL Handicapping: Targeting teams to make money on the second half of the season

02.27.2017     11:40 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
As the NHL season approaches Wednesday’s trade deadline, it is time to take a look at some teams that I have targeted as “bet on” and “bet against” moving forward.

The Boston Bruins stand out as a potential “bet on” squad. Boston has enjoyed a rejuvenation of energy and team chemistry after dismissing head coach Claude Julien and handing it over to interim Bruce Cassidy. The Bruins are 6-1 since the coaching change and have scored 3+ goals in all but one of those games. Cassidy put an emphasis on wanting his team attack more offensively which explains why they over on a 4-2-1 O/U run under his watch. But while the offense has enjoyed an uptick in production, defense and goaltending that will determine just how far they go. The Bruins have an aging, slow of foot Zdeno Chara anchoring the blue line and a bunch of newcomers and youngsters on the back end. Adam McQuaid and Torrey Krug are solid defenders but this unit is still a work in progress.

The Nashville Predators have underachieved at times this season but have played their best stretch of hockey of the season with three straight wins. Their offense has been on fire of Read more

Tags: NHL Boston Bruins Nashville Predators New Jersey Devils Carolina Hurricanes Ian Cameron

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: Boston Bruins at Los Angeles Kings

02.23.2017     10:33 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
Boston at Los Angeles -140 O/U 5
Recommendation: Over

The Boston Bruins have made a point to play with more speed, pace and tempo in their game since Bruce Cassidy took over as interim head coach . Boston has gone 4-1 in the first five games under Cassidy and they have been trending over the total as well at an 8-2 O/U clip in their last 10 games. LA is not your typical "over" team as the Kings are a below average offensive team with a good defense and solid enough goaltending being provided to them by Peter Budaj who has filled in admirably for injured Jonathan Quick. Los Angeles has scored just four goals in its last three games combined but the Kings should have a good chance to get the offense on track tonight against Boston’s backup goalie Anton Khudobin who will get the start on the second night of back-to-back games. The over is 4-0-1 in Khudobin’s last five starts in net and he has mediocre numbers with a 3.05 GAA and .888 save percentage. On the flip side, Boston has scored 3+ goals in nine of its last 10 and for as good as Budaj has been all season, he hasn’t been nearly as sharp or effective of late with 3+ Read more

Tags: NHL Boston Bruins Los Angeles Kings Ian Cameron

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: New York Islanders at Detroit Red Wings

02.21.2017     10:17 AM     Alex Smith     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Alex Smith blog entry.
NY Islanders -110 at Detroit O/U 5.5
Recommendation: New York

Two Eastern Conference clubs heading in different directions as Detroit hosts the New York Islanders. These two clubs met in Motown back on February 3 with the Wings picking up the 5-4 victory and giving Islanders interim head coach Doug Weight his first regulation loss since taking over the job. Since that contest, the Isles have gone 5-3-1 overall, including a 3-1-1 run as favorites, while Detroit is 3-5-1 in its last nine games and have lost seven of their last nine at Joe Louis Arena. In addition, this time around, the Red Wings are missing scoring winger Gustav Nyquist, who is still serving his six-game suspension for a high stick. The 27-year-old Swedish native picked up an assist in 18 minutes of playing time last meeting. And defensemen Mike Green and Johnathan Ericsson, who both log in solid minutes on the blue-line, are now out with injuries; the latter, Ericsson, is done for the year with a broken wrist. New York is still very much alive in the Wild Card race in the Eastern Conference while the Red Wings will miss the postseason for the first Read more

Tags: NHL New York Islanders Detroit Red Wings Alex B. Smith

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: Colorado Avalanche at Buffalo Sabres

02.16.2017     09:27 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
Colorado at Buffalo -170 O/U 5
Recommendation: Over

The Colorado Avalanche are dead last in the NHL in goals allowed. Over their last four games, they’ve surrendered 3+ goals in each contest and 16 total during that span. There is no rhyme or reason for any game involving this team and their woeful defense and goaltending to have a total as low as 5. Colorado does however have the offensive weapons to find the back of the net even though those players, namely Matt Duchene and Gabriel Landeskog, continue to be talked about in trade rumors as the league's trade deadline looms. Of course on the other side, Buffalo is far from an offensive juggernaut, ranking 25th in the league at 2.5 gpg. But there's been a recent uptick in production as the Sabres have netted three or more goals in four of their last seven games. In the last three games in which Buffalo had a lined total of 5, the final scores ended up 5-4, 5-2 and 4-2. Sabres center Ryan O’Reilly has been a major catalyst in the team’s recent offensive surge with three goals in his last seven games. The recent series history between the Avalanche and Sabres has been relatively high Read more

Tags: NHL Colorado Avalanche Buffalo Sabres Ian Cameron

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: St. Louis Blues at Detroit Red Wings

02.15.2017     09:23 AM     Alex Smith     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Alex Smith blog entry.
St. Louis -110 at Detroit O/U 5.5
Recommendation: St. Louis

Two former Central Division rivals clash in the Motor City tonight as the Detroit Red Wings host the St. Louis Blues. Detroit has fallen on hard times as of late, dropping nine of its last 11 contests. They currently sit dead last in the Eastern Conference with 54 points and could be skating without two of their best forwards as veteran Thomas Vanek is out indefinitely with a lower body injury and Gustav Nyquist could miss a few games after a high-sticking incident in Sunday's 6-3 loss at Minnesota. The 27-year-old winger hit Wild defenseman Jared Spurgeon in the face, drawing blood with the blade of his stick and served a 4-minute double minor. Nyquist will have an in-person hearing in New York soon, which suggests he could miss as many as six games. As for Vanek, the club's leading goal-scorer with 14 and second in points with 36, this further handcuffs a Detroit offense that has scored three goals or fewer in 10 of its last 11 games. The Blues have started to get back on the right track under new coach Mike Yeo with wins in five of their last six. Wingers Patrik Berglund and Vladimir Read more

Tags: NHL St. Louis Blues Detroit Red Wings Alex B. Smith

NHL Handicapping: Recent rule change results in more games going over the total

02.13.2017     11:11 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
Earlier this month, the NHL introduced a mandatory equipment change for goalies. They now must wear streamlined pants which are tighter, rounder, and more form-fitting. It supposed to be more comfortable for goalies but also opens up the possibility for more goals. The league's overall totals record this season is currently 362-361 O/U. But since the equipment change was implemented last Saturday, games have gone 32-25-6 O/U which comes out to 56% "overs." It’s not a jaw dropping number by any stretch but it does point to the NHL’s attempt to give fans more offense. More changes are reportedly on the horizon and expected to be introduced prior to the start of the 2017-18 campaign. The recent trend towards the “over” is something worth monitoring in the weeks to come as goalies around the league continue to adjust.

Let's also discuss a trio of teams that have been strong to "over" in recent weeks. The Minnesota Wild have been on one of the longest running totals streaks I’ve seen during my near decade run of betting the NHL. Since December 13, the Wild have gone a remarkable 21-4-3 O/U. This is a talented offensive group Read more

Tags: NHL Ian Cameron

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: New York Islanders at Ottawa Senators

02.11.2017     07:35 AM     Alex Smith     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Alex Smith blog entry.
NY Islanders at Ottawa +105 O/U 5.5
Recommenation: New York

Two Eastern Conference clubs hook-up in the Canadien Capital for a matinee affair between the New York Islanders and the Ottawa Senators. The Isles have been playing wonderful hockey since they promoted assistant coach Doug Weight to the top spot, going 7-2-1 in their last 10 games and now sit just a point behind division rivals Philadelphia for that 2nd and final Wild Card berth. Their offensive production has been stellar, scoring 3 or more goals in 17 of their last 21 contests, and combined with the strong goaltending from Thomas Greiss, who has won 8 of his last 11 starts, New York is a team on the rise that could be a trade deadline move away from having a true dark horse contender for the postseason. Ottawa has been sitting sturdy at 2nd place in the Atlantic Division, but have fallen into a bit of a slump, losing 2 of their last 3 games, and getting shutout in back-to-back contests earlier this week. The Sens have been playing down to their lesser competition over the last several games and they cannot afford to overlook this Islanders team as they are moving in the right direction, Read more

Tags: NHL New York Islanders Ottawa Senators Alex B. Smith

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: St. Louis Blues at Toronto Maple Leafs

02.09.2017     11:01 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
St. Louis +120 at Toronto O/U 5.5
Recommendation: St. Louis

I delivered a free play winner last week with this same matchup as the St. Louis Blues trounced the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-1. It was the Blues' first game after the firing of head coach Ken Hitchcock with Mike Yeo taking over behind the bench. The same two teams meet tonight in Toronto and even though it is a revenge situation for the Leafs, the Blues are playing too well and getting too good of a price tag here to pass up. St. Louis is 3-1 since the coaching change and they have registered extremely impressive back-to-back shutouts on the road against Philadelphia and Ottawa by a combined score of 8-0. The goaltending from Jake Allen which had been shaky for much of the season has been better of late and the team is buying into being much more assertive, especially paying more attention to detail defensively in their own zone. Toronto has had problems defensively and keeping the puck out of their own net for several games now and that could be a problem tonight. St. Louis is 5-2 in the last seven meetings against Toronto and at the current +120 price, there is still value on this morphing Read more

Tags: NHL St. Louis Blues Toronto Maple Leafs Ian Cameron

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: Winnipeg Jets at Dallas Stars

02.02.2017     10:11 AM     Alex Smith     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Alex Smith blog entry.
Winnipeg at Dallas -135 O/U 6
Recommendation: Over

It's a Central Division clash as the Dallas Stars host the Winnipeg Jets. These two clubs have been all about offense over the last month of action with Dallas scoring three or more goals in nine of its last 13 games. That resulted in a 9-3-1 O/U mark though a 4-9 SU record. Injuries on defense with veteran blue-liner Johnny Oduya out 2-4 weeks with an ankle issue and Jamie Oleksiak sidelined indefinitely with a broken hand won't help matters for Dallas who is ranked 4th worst in the league in goals allowed and dead last in opponent power play pct. and power play goals allowed. Winnipeg has been slowly climbing from the Central Division cellar with four wins in its last six games including three straight victories against divisional foes. The Jets are flying high on the offensive front with 26 goals in their last 6 contests. They too have been strong to the over of late with an 8-1-1 O/U mark. But like Dallas, they have also struggled to keep the puck from their own net, yielding three or more goals in 11 of their last 12 games. Forwards Mark Scheifele and Bryan Little have been the major Read more

Tags: NHL Winnipeg Jets Dallas Stars Alex B. Smith

NHL Handicapper Free Betting Pick: Toronto Maple Leafs at St. Louis Blues

02.02.2017     10:05 AM     ICC     Printer Friendly
Submitted by ICC blog entry.
Toronto at St. Louis -120 O/U 5.5
Recommendation: St. Louis

The St. Louis Blues relieved head coach Ken Hitchcock of his duties following a lethargic 5-3 home loss to the Winnipeg Jets. St. Louis has been playing mediocre hockey for the better part of the last month including a recent 1-5 slide. Most of the problems had little to do with coaching but rather a lack of effort and intensity. Lack of a consistent puck stopper in net, particularly Jake Allen, also contributed.  Former Minnesota head coach Mike Yeo will take over behind the bench. He was slated to take over as head coach next season after Ken Hitchcock’s retirement but that process has been sped up. I expect the typical “step up” effort from St. Louis following the coaching change which is a common occurrence in the NHL. Look no further than the NY Islanders who have gone 5-0-1 since dismissing head coach Jack Capuano. Toronto is coming off their own bad performance in a 6-3 loss in Dallas on Tuesday. The defense has certainly had some problems since the injury to their top blue liner Morgan Rielly. Replacing his minutes on the ice and impact on the game in all Read more

Tags: NHL Toronto Maple Leafs St. Louis Blues Ian Cameron


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