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NHL Odds, Pick & Preview: Stars vs. Kraken (April 3)

NHL Odds, Pick & Preview: Stars vs. Kraken (April 3) article feature image
Credit:

Glenn James/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Jake Oettinger.

  • The Kraken host the Stars as home underdogs on Sunday night.
  • Is this a good spot to back Seattle with Dallas on the second leg of a back-to-back?
  • Tony Sartori breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet below.

Stars vs. Kraken Odds

Stars Odds -155
Kraken Odds +135
Over/Under 5.5 (-120 / +100)
Time 9 p.m. ET
TV ESPN+
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The Central Division’s fifth-place Dallas Stars travel to Seattle to take on the Pacific Division’s eighth-place Kraken. This is the second meeting between these two teams this season, with the Stars having won the first matchup 5-2 at home.

Will we see another high-scoring affair between these two teams, or can the goaltending step up this time around?

Dallas Defense Thrives With Oettinger, Heiskanen

The Dallas Stars enter this contest on the second half of a road back-to-back following Saturday night’s game against the San Jose Sharks. This game will be the Stars’ third in the last four days, and we could see some very tired legs.

Dallas has been involved in low-scoring games recently as there have been under 5.5 total goals scored in four of their last seven games. The primary reason for the low-scoring games has been the excellent goaltending of Jake Oettinger, the confirmed starting goaltender for this matchup.

Oettinger has allowed two or fewer goals in three of his last five games, posting a 0.917 save percentage and 2.4 goals allowed average over that stretch. This season, Oettinger ranks 12th amongst starting goaltenders in 5-on-5 goals saved above expected per 60 minutes (GSAx).

It is not shocking that low-scoring games started becoming a regular occurence for the Stars again once defensemen Miro Heiskanen returned to the lineup. The Dallas defense, led by the excellent play of Heiskanen, ranks 10th in the league in 5-on-5 expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA).


Seattle’s Offense Especially Struggling of Late

The Kraken rank even higher than Dallas in 5-on-5 expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA), sitting ninth in the league in that category. While the Kraken don’t do much well, playing stingy defense and suppressing high-danger scoring chances is the one thing this team is capable of doing at a high level.

Opposing teams are averaging just 2.83 goals scored per game over the Kraken’s last six contests. Seattle’s offense, on the other hand, has been awful all season.

Currently, Seattle ranks just 31st in the league in 5-on-5 expected goals per 60 minutes (xGF). Seattle’s offense has particularly struggled recently, as it’s averaging just 2.71 goals scored per game over its last seven contests.

Philipp Grubauer is the projected starting goaltender for the Kraken and plays better on home ice, granted still not very well. However, he has a shot at a good outing going against a Dallas team that is on the second half of a road back-to-back and playing their third game in four days.

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Stars vs. Kraken Pick

I do not think we will see many goals in this matchup as Dallas will probably have some tired legs in this matchup, and Seattle would struggle to score even if there was not a goaltender.

Both the statistics and underlying metrics suggest a low-scoring game in this matchup, and I think we will see some regression from their first matchup in the goal-scoring department.

These are two teams that have strong blue lines and can frustrate opposing forwards, which I am banking on for the under in this contest.

Pick: Under 5.5 (+100) | Play up to (-120)

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