Tuesday NHL Odds, Picks, Prediction: Colorado Avalanche vs. Pittsburgh Penguins Betting Preview
Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Mikko Rantanen, Gabriel Landeskog
- The Penguins are short home favorites on Tuesday night against the Avalanche.
- The Avalanche are short a few key players, so is there value in fading them here?
- Jonny Lazarus breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet below.
Avalanche vs. Penguins Odds
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The Colorado Avalanche and Pittsburgh Penguins are set to meet for the second game of a home-and-home. The Avalanche took the first meeting on their home ice thanks to a late third-period goal by Devon Toews.
This was a very back-and-forth game, and both goalies stood on their heads. Tristan Jarry made 35 saves on 38 shots, and Darcy Kuemper had 38 saves on 40 shots. Both teams showed up offensively, but the goalies outshined the offensive talent in this matchup.
The Avs have played a very strong stretch of hockey and are looking to continue that on the road against a Penguins team that is trying to move up in the Metropolitan Division standings.
The Colorado Avalanche enter this game on a three-game win streak and are 8-1-1 in their last 10 overall. It is obvious that they are the best team in the NHL right now and are getting ready for a long playoff run.
However, they aren’t as dangerous as they will be when they get fully healthy. In the last meeting, the Avs were missing two of their top five scorers, Nazem Kadri and Gabriel Landeskog. They will once again have to play without those two in the lineup, so scoring might not come easy.
We have seen the Avs’ offensive production slow down a bit lately as they have only scored 32 goals in their last 10 games. This shows how strong the goaltending has been for them.
Darcy Kuemper has really stepped it up a notch. He has won two straight starts and has made 92 saves on 95 combined Shots Against in those games. He is arguably playing his best stretch of hockey right now.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are 2-3-0 in their last five games. They are playing well but aren’t putting the wins together easily.
The Penguins have been impressive defensively at even strength and when they are shorthanded. Pittsburgh is the fourth-best team in defensive proficiency as they are only allowing 2.6 Goals Against per game, which is outperforming their Expected Goals Against of 2.7 per 60.
They also rank in the top 10 in the league in High-Danger Chances Against per 60 minutes as they are only surrendering 10.51 to their opponents. The most impressive aspect of their defensive game is their Penalty Kill. The Pens have the second-best man-down unit, killing off 85.6% of the penalties that they take.
The Penguins showed that they have what it takes to shut down the Avalanche’s dangerous offense, but they just couldn’t hold on until the end. Having home ice advantage might push them over the top this time around as they are 19-10-5 at PPG Paints Arena.
Avalanche vs. Penguins Pick
Even though the Avalanche are missing two key players, I still love the way this team is playing, and they continue to trend in the right direction. They still have three absolute studs in their lineup with Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen and a potential Norris Trophy winner, Cale Makar.
The Penguins have their own set of stars as well with Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Jake Guentzel and Kris Letang. As good as Tristan Jarry has been in goal all season, I give the advantage to the Avalanche in the goaltending department with Kuemper.
Expect another close battle between these two teams, but getting the best team in the NHL at +100 is too good to pass up on. Back the Avalanche to steal two points on the road in the Steel city.
Pick: Colorado Avalanche ML +100