NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Golden Knights vs Stars Pick (Wednesday, November 22)
Via Jeff Bottari/Getty Images. Pictured: Adin Hill #33 of the Vegas Golden Knights tends net during the second period against the Colorado Avalanche at T-Mobile Arena on November 04, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Golden Knights vs. Stars Odds
Here's everything you need to know about Golden Knights vs Stars on Wednesday, Nov. 22 — our expert prediction and betting preview.
As we head toward the holiday break, hockey fans can be thankful for a clash between two Western Conference heavyweights on Wednesday night's NHL schedule.
After facing each other in the 2023 Western Conference Final last spring, the Vegas Golden Knights and Dallas Stars are both sitting in first place in their respective divisions as they prepare for their second meeting of the season.
The Golden Knights, of course, triumphed in that playoff series and went on to win their first Stanley Cup, and the Stars continue to assert themselves as a top challenger.
Back on Oct. 17, the first meeting of the year between these two ended in a shootout win for the home team in Vegas.
Here's why the champs could prevail again on Wednesday.
Find my preview and prediction for Golden Knights vs. Stars below.
From the jump, the Vegas Golden Knights defied all expectations for an NHL expansion team. This year, they dismantled the myth of the Stanley Cup hangover by surging out to an 11-0-1 start.
Since they lost their first game in regulation on Nov. 5, though, they've looked a lot more human, with a 2-4-1 record over their last seven games.
They arrive in Dallas after a pair of losses in Pennsylvania last weekend — dropping a 4-3 overtime decision to the surprising Philadelphia Flyers and a 3-0 shutout loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
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Vegas is healthy, and while there's no single stat that jumps off the page, all of the club's underlying numbers are solid, even after they've been pulled down a bit by this mini-skid.
That includes goaltending, where Adin Hill and Logan Thompson have been holding down the fort very effectively.
Bruce Cassidy has, for the most part, been alternating his netminders, but this is a key clash. Though Hill took the loss in Pittsburgh, it seems likely that the Cup winner will get the nod after his work against Dallas last spring — and after getting the shootout win in Vegas back in October.
Hill's workload has been a little heavier than Thompson's, and his numbers are slightly better — an impressive 2.07 Goals Against Average, .928 save percentage and 7.6 Goals Saved Above Expected.
The Dallas Stars sit three points behind Vegas in the Western Conference standings, but that's because they've played two fewer games. They have also lost just four games in regulation this year and have a .735 points percentage, compared to .737 for the Golden Knights.
Suffice to say, there is not much to choose from between these teams so far this season.
The Stars are the team with the strong reputation for defense, and that's what the Expected Goals numbers show. Dallas is expected to score fewer goals than Vegas and also give up fewer goals. Their overall Expected Goals Share of 54.14% is also superior to the Golden Knights' 50.98%.
In reality, though, the Stars are actually scoring more than the Golden Knights and giving up a bit more as well. In net, Jake Oettinger's numbers are impressive, with a 2.50 GAA, .920 save percentage and 4.8 Goals Saved Above Expected, but they aren't quite as good as Hill's.
The Stars are also basically healthy. Defenseman Thomas Harley has missed the last three games with an upper-body injury and is listed as day-to-day.
Dallas has won five of its last six games, but the loss was a clunker. Last Saturday, the Stars blew a 3-0 lead on home ice in what ended up as a 6-3 defeat at the hands of the Colorado Avalanche. To their credit, they rebounded well on Monday with a 6-3 win of their own over the tough New York Rangers.
The Stars are the hotter team heading into Wednesday's game, and they have home-ice advantage. That explains why they're the favorites on the moneyline as they opened at -125.
But Vegas prevailed in the first matchup of the year, and it's hard to ignore that the Golden Knights won two of three games at the American Airlines Center last spring, and the third game was decided on a power play in overtime.
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Vegas's slight edge in net could also be key on Wednesday night.
If the Golden Knights have been mired in a bit of malaise after dominating the first month of the season, a return to Dallas should snap them out of their slumber. Backing the Stanley Cup champs to win at plus money offers too much value to pass up.