NHL Best Bets Tonight: Nicholas Martin’s Monday Night Picks
(Photo by Nick Wosika/Getty Images) Pictured: Kirill Kaprizov celebrates a goal.
Here are my NHL best bets for tonight.
NHL Best Bets Tonight
The Flames have come out of the All-Star break energized with three straight road victories, all as heavy underdogs.
Elias Lindholm is a more valuable player than Andrei Kuzmenko when true to form, but it was logical to assume the trade wouldn't hurt the Flames current on ice product as greatly as some may have expected. Lindholm appeared to be half engaged as he awaited a likely trade out of town, and having that situation resolved seems to be sitting well with the group.
Kuzmenko has found immediate chemistry on a top line consisting of he, Jonathan Huberdeau and Yegor Sharangovich, and they broke through with some critical goals to start the road trip.
The causation likely goes beyond the addition of Kuzmenko, but Huberdeau has had his best stretch of hockey as a Flame since the All-Star break. If he can continue to look closer to the player the Flames expected him to be, it should lead to increased shooting rates for Kuzmenko and Sharangovich.
Huberdeau-Sharangovich-Kuzmenko will never be a 5-on-5 powerhouse as all three pieces aren't known to drive play in the right direction. The opposition is going to get their chances against them. However, they can offer legitimate top-line offensive upside, and can be especially effective if offered lots of offensive zone starts.
The Flames have trailed for only a combined 2:31 of game time in the three matchups since the new-look top line was assembled. Its obvious that the trios greatest asset is never going to be protecting leads, so if we finally see a trailing game-script, like we could tonight versus the Rangers, their ice-time should rise.
Sharangovich ranks second on the Flames with 20 goals. Lofty shot volume isn't the greatest reason for his production, but he is still clearly trending at the low end of what we should expect moving forward in terms of shots on goal. If he is to remain on the top powerplay, and playing alongside a rejuvenated Huberdeau, we should expect his shots on goal average to rise.
Sharangovich is priced at +160 to record three shots on goal in this game, and I view that number as a great price to buy low.
Pick: Yegor Sharangovich Over 2.5 Shots on Goal +160 at Bet365 | Play to +150
You have to give credit to the resilient Golden Knights, who have displayed some championship mettle to battle through a tough injury situation while still boasting a solid record.
However, their underlying process suggests that regression is on the horizon as they have allowed 3.22 expected goals against per 60 while generating only 2.86 expected goals for per 60 over their past 10 games.
Vegas' horrid injury situation was momentarily improved as William Karlsson returned last week versus Edmonton. But, ahead of tonight's contest, Mark Stone, Pavel Dorofeyev, Zach Whitecloud and Jonas Rondbjerg are all listed as day-to-day with illness. Jack Eichel, Shea Theodore, William Carrier, Ben Hutton and Tobias Bjornfot also remain on the IR.
Adin Hill has been the greatest reason for the Knights recent success, and now owns a ridiculous .937 save percentage and +18.8 GSAx over 19 games. It is unlikely Hill will be this dominant moving forward, unless he truly is the best goaltender in the league by a wide margin. On top of that, it would be reasonable to see backup Logan Thompson get this start, at which point this bet would gain significant value.
The Wild have the potential to play much better in the coming weeks than we saw throughout an injury riddled period prior to the All-Star break. They have played to a 51.03 xGF% over their past 10 games and deserve strong marks for their two regulation victories since the break.
Their roster has more proven offensive upside than we have seen recently, and a 3.71 xGF/60 since the break agrees with that. Meanwhile, the Knights are due to allow more goals, particularly if Thompson ends up starting tonight. Or if Stone sits this contest out.
You could bet the Wild to win the game in any fashion to +115, but I actually view backing them to score three goals first at +175 as the most profitable angle on this game.