Sunday NHL Odds, Pick, Prediction: Edmonton Oilers vs. St. Louis Blues Betting Preview
Codie McLachlan/Getty Images. Pictured: Connor McDavid.
- Edmonton catches St. Louis on a back-to-back set in Sunday's NHL action.
- The Oilers possess one of the NHL's most potent offenses that should get plenty of opportunities against a tired Blues squad.
- Nicholas Martin breaks down the meeting below and gives his top pick.
Oilers vs. Blues Odds
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds and Futures Odds here.|
Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers look to find some consistency as they continue their five-game road trip, with regulation losses to Detroit and Buffalo sandwiching an emotional win in Boston Thursday night.
St. Louis appears to be falling back down to earth over a 3-3-2 stretch, following a 6-0 start to the season, including a 3-2 loss to Carolina last night.
Who can we expect to claim two points in this battle between two of the West’s better clubs in the early going of this season?
Oilers Offense Can Save the Defense
The underlying numbers may be slightly concerning, but when you possess the elite offensive talents the Oilers do, that likely only means so much as the deadly offensive creativity of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl often hard to quantify.
I’m not sure it’s coach Dave Tippett’s dream to consistently play higher-scoring contests either, but it seems a natural occurrence due to his team’s average goaltending and defensive core, counteracted by some all-world offensive talent.
I am still unsold on Duncan Keith and Cody Ceci as a second defensive unit, as well as Mikko Koskinen being anything but an average to sub-par starting netminder, but the Oilers likely hold the pieces to nullify those potential concerns a lot of nights this season. Particularly in contests against teams like St. Louis skating in a back-to-back situation, which will likely allow the Oilers to drive more of the play and prevent their defensive core from spending as much time in the defensive zone.
The Oilers have posted the league’s top goals for per games played mark at 4.08 so far this season and will look to build on those early results Sunday.
Mikko Koskinen will likely draw the start for the contest, and has been very solid this season in stopping 91.8% of shots on goal as well as 1.0 goals saved above expected.
For more odds on the Oilers, please refer to this page.
Blues Have Regressed From Hot Start
St. Louis fell again in a very respectable effort against Carolina on Saturday, and after a 6-0 start which featured some easier competition and some favorable puck-luck, the regression seems to be setting in for the club.
One concern for coach Craig Berube seems to be the defensive depth in behind the top pieces of Colton Parayko, Torey Krug and Justin Faulk. Robert Bortuzzo, Marco Scandella and Jake Walman have all been less than stellar, owning xGF% below 44.3 so far this season.
The situation is worsened with the current loss of Torey Krug, who has arguably been the Blues best defender so far this season and is currently out on the COVID-19 protocol list.
Brayden Schenn’s status for the contest is currently unclear, as the top-six forward remains day-to-day with an upper body injury.
Jordan Binnington will draw the start for the contest having sat in favor of backup Joel Hofer on Saturday.
Binnington has enjoyed a nice bounce-back start to the season, owning a 92.2 save percentage and stopping 4.6 goals saved above expected (GSAx).
For more odds on the Blues, please refer to this page.
Blues vs. Oilers Pick
Backing Mikko Koskinen and this Oilers defensive core scares me to an extent, as I do feel they are a likely regression candidate as the season rolls along and are due for lesser results.
However, I do still foresee them finishing above St. Louis longterm this season, and I feel that getting the Oilers priced at close to even money here, catching the Blues on the second leg of a back-to-back situation offers a favorable spot.
I think we will see a sharper offensive effort from the Oilers here against a Blues team that has given up a high number of offensive opportunities this season and skated in a high-paced contest last night at Carolina.
Pick: Edmonton (-105 | play to -120)
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