NHL Odds, Pick, Prediction: Flames vs. Avalanche (March 5)

NHL Odds, Pick, Prediction: Flames vs. Avalanche (March 5) article feature image

Vincent Ethier/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Colorado Avalanche standout Nazem Kadri.

  • Heavyweight NHL franchises square off Saturday when Colorado hosts Calgary in a battle of first-place franchises.
  • The Avalanche are coming off an upset loss to the Arizona Coyotes last time out, so they'll be looking to get back to their winning ways.
  • Tony Sartori takes a deep dive into the matchup below and explains why he's backing Colorado.

Flames vs. Avalanche Odds

Flames Odds+130
Avalanche Odds-150
Over/Under6.5 (-105/-115)
Time10 p.m. ET
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

We have a heavyweight bout on deck Saturday, with the Pacific Division's first-place Calgary Flames traveling to south to take on the Central Division's first-place Colorado Avalanche.

This will be the first meeting this year between these two powerhouses.

Both teams are coming off embarrassing losses and will look for a big bounce-back. That said, will Colorado's home dominance continue against surging Calgary? Let's take a look.

Calgary Flames

The Flames enter this contest following a big upset loss to the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night. Even though that was a difficult loss, the Flames have been surging lately as they have won 12 of their last 14 games.

However, most of their success has been at home. In their past 10 road games, the Flames have posted a 4-6 record.

Calgary is even worse when priced as an underdog on the road as it's just 1-6 over its last seven games in such situations. Jacob Markstrom is projected to start between the pipes for Calgary, who has not been playing up to his standard of late.

Over his last four starts, Markstrom is just 2-2 with an underwhelming 0.895 save percentage. The Flames are just 1-4 this season when Markstrom starts in games where the Flames are a road underdog.

Colorado Avalanche

The Avalanche return home following Thursday's upset loss to the Arizona Coyotes. Heading back to home ice is the optimal situation for a bounce-back for this team, as it's practically unbeatable when playing at Ball Arena.

Over their last 23 games priced as a home favorite, the Avalanche are an impeccable 21-2 this season. Darcy Kuemper is projected to start for Colorado and plays even better at Ball Arena.

Playing at home this season, Kuemper's save percentage jumps up to 0.921 overall. Kuemper is 14-1 in his last 15 home starts.

Colorado, not shockingly, is one of the best teams statistically and analytically. Colorado ranks 11th in the league in 5-on-5 expected goals for per 60 minutes, plus it's second in 5-on-5 expected goals against per 60 minutes.

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Flames vs. Avalanche Pick

This game will be awesome to watch and could be a preview of this year's Western Conference Finals. As tough as It is to pick a winner in this matchup, the Avalanche just can't be bet against at home right now.

This is a matchup that has favored Colorado over the last few seasons as it's 6-1 over its last seven meetings with Calgary. That said, I like the Avalanche to make it 7-1 in a great game.

I rarely make plays that lay more than a $1.50 in juice, so if this line goes any further than (-155), then I think that the three-way moneyline is a fair play to make at -110 or better.

Pick: Colorado ML (-150)

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