NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Flames vs. Coyotes
Zac BonDurant/Getty Images. Pictured: Barrett Hayton
- The Arizona Coyotes host the Calgary Flames in a Wednesday night NHL tilt.
- The Flames are gunning for the playoffs, but Arizona is a sneaky tough matchup, despite its place in the standings.
- Continue reading for a full breakdown of this matchup, including how to bet it.
Flames vs. Coyotes Odds
|Time||9:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
After a rough loss at home to the Flyers, the Calgary Flames head to Arizona on Wednesday to take on the Coyotes. It’s been a very up-and-down season for the Flames, and they’ve going 4-4-2 in their last 10 games as they attempt to claw their way into the postseason.
The Coyotes started the season on an expected rough note, but they’re playing better as of late. They’ve kept games close for the most part, going 5-1-4 in their last 10 games. Arizona has nothing to lose, and at the end of the season, those teams are the most dangerous for teams like the Flames.
Here’s a look at our odds, as well as our prediction for the Calgary Flames vs. Arizona Coyotes.
The Flames are a curious case. After losing two of their top scorers, they were hoping that Jonathan Huberdeau would pick up the slack, which he hasn’t. The former 100-point scorer has 38 points in 54 games. Elias Lindholm is also having a down year after a 100-point season.
What’s surprising is Tyler Toffoli is leading the team in scoring. He’s no slouch, but he’s usually one to be a fifth leading scorer for a successful team.
Despite this slow season for Calgary, it’s actually one of the best even strength offenses in the league. It ranks sixth in expected goals with a 54.14 xGF%. What has held the Flames back is their porous power play, scoring only 19% of the time.
On the defensive side, the Flames are actually pretty solid. They only allow 3.02 goals per game and are one of the best at limiting expected goals against. The penalty kill is also very good, at 81.6%.
After being nominated for the Vezina last year, Jacob Markstrom has had an abysmal year. The towering Swede is playing to an uncharacteristic -0.6 goals saved above expected and an .889 SV%.
Another week goes by and Jakob Chychrun remains out for trade-related reasons. The dynamic defenseman hasn’t played since February 10th and won’t play until a trade commences. Luckily, players like Clayton Keller, Nick Schmaltz and Lawson Crouse have picked up the slack and have been as productive as ever.
While Arizona’s one of the worst even strength offenses, it’s picked up over the past month. It currently stands 30th in expected goals, but is 23rd since January 21. That doesn’t look like much, but is better than what it was. The power play is as good as it’s going to get, only scoring 19.3% of the time.
Defensively, the Yotes are a bit of a mess as expected, especially with Chychrun out. They allow 3.44 goals per game and are 25th in expected goals against.
Karel Vejmelka’s play has dropped to the point where coach Andre Tourigny has put more faith in Connor Ingram. Ingram played on Sunday, however, so I think we see Vejmelka. The Czech netminder is playing to an overall great +12.9 GSAx, but since January 1, has a .901 SV%.
Flames vs. Coyotes Pick
My faith in the Flames has dwindled. It’s clear that the locker room is in shambles and the players are not buying into Daryl Sutter anymore. As I keep hoping that they snap out of it, they don’t, and they don’t win the games they should win (like the one against the Flyers at home).
Arizona should be scary to the Flames. Sure, to start the season, the Coyotes were a joke, but they have now earned points in nine out of their last 10 games. Not only that, but they have a 13-8-2 record at home.
One can look at the records Vejmelka and Markstrom have against each other, but I wouldn’t look too far into it. The Flames are vulnerable and are more prone to gripping their sticks too tight, while Arizona has been playing with house money since the turn of the year. I’m backing the heavy underdog Coyotes to win at home.
Pick: Coyotes +168
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