We are one night into the NHL season, and Connor McDavid already has three goals. McDavid led the Oilers to a 3-0 win over the Flames.
Last night’s action: On the surface, it looks like the Jets had their lunch fed to them by the Maple Leafs, but in reality the game was a lot closer than it seemed. The 7-2 final score definitely flattered Toronto, and you could make the argument that the ice was tilted toward the Leafs’ goal, but stop me if you’ve heard this before: The Jets were done in by their goaltender. In their banner-raiser, the Penguins scored two goals late in the third but ultimately fell to the Blues, 5-4, in overtime. Pittsburgh was, generally, the better team, but Matt Murray had an off night in goal. And, finally, we saw Wayne Simmonds net a hat trick in a 5-3 win over the Sharks in Northern California.
The first game on the board sees Carey Price and the Montreal Canadiens travel to Western New York to take on the Buffalo Sabres. The Habs are the pick to win, but the price seems on point here.
Boston will be without their best forward, Patrice Bergeron, and arguably their best defenseman, Torey Krug, when they host the defending Western Conference Champion Nashville Predators in their opener. Without those two players, this game is a toss-up, so you could argue there’s a smidge of value on the Preds at plus money, but there’s not enough in it.
Coming off a historically bad season, the Colorado Avalanche’s blank slate heads to the Big Apple for a tilt with the New York Rangers. The implied probability here suggests the Avs have a 36.36 percent chance of pulling the upset, which is probably selling them short. Keep the booze close but take the value on the underdog.
In a battle of the capital cities, the Washington Capitals head to face the Erik Karlsson-less Ottawa Senators. It’s a hard pass here as the odds are well priced.
The Detroit Red Wings will open their new building, Little Caesars Arena, by hosting the Minnesota Wild. Wings’ goalie Jimmy Howard was on pace for his best season before an injury last year, but it’s hard to imagine he’ll play at that level with the Wings’ current defense corps. At the other end of the rink, Devan Dubnyk gets the start for Minnesota. It’s hard to argue against the Wild in this spot, and the visitors are fine for a wager.
The Penguins are right back at it, as they finish off a back to back with a visit to the Windy City for a date with the Blackhawks. There is value on the rested home team here, and it could be gone by the time the starting goalies are announced.
Philly will complete a back-to-back of their own with a trip to the Staples Center to face the Los Angeles Kings. The Flyers are on the second night of a back-to-back, but at that number they’re in range for a wager.
And finally, the upstart Arizona Coyotes head to the Honda Center to take on the Anaheim Ducks. The ‘Yotes are a good team to keep an eye on in the early going as they could be underpriced early, and that is the case tonight. The Desert (under)Dogs are a good value play against the Ducks. UPDATE: With Louis Domingue starting over Antti Raanta, there is no play here.
(Season to date: 1-1, +0.53)
[Photo: Andrew Villa, USA Today]