Hope the weekend treated everyone well. Our picks on Saturday weren’t all that great as we went one-for-three. Tristan Jarry of the Penguins surprised me and the Islanders as Pittsburgh narrowly edged out the Isles 3-2. The Wild came threw for us over the Ducks but scored one goal too many to go over the total. On to a new week, let’s dig into Monday’s slate and find some winners.
Season record: 13-10-1
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Calgary Flames at Toronto Maple Leafs
All of a sudden the Flames are struggling. Make it three straight defeats after Saturday’s brutal 7-1 shellacking to the Edmonton Oilers. The Flames now sit a game under.500 and are losing ground to teams in the North. Other teams like the Leafs, Habs, Jets, and Oilers continue to distance themselves, the room for error is shrinking for Calgary.
If Calgary is ever going to be ready to play their best hockey it will be against the division-leading Maple Leafs. Toronto enters this one after a big 5-3 win over the rival Canadiens. They lead the entire league in wins(14) and winning percentage(.789). Calgary has struggled to score mightily over their last five games averaging just 1.60 goals per game. The under has hit in six of the Flames’ last nine contests.
If the Flames want to be competitive in this game they will want to avoid trading scoring chances with the Leafs loaded lineup. Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews continue to light it up. Matthews is scorching right now with seven goals and 13 points over his last five games.
Look for the Flames to buckle things down and pay close attention to defense in this one after such a dud on Saturday. The Leafs just played a big game against their biggest rivals, they will perhaps be less geared up against a struggling Calgary club.
Ice Pick: Under 6.5-115
Buffalo Sabres at New York Islanders
We are going right back to the well with the Islanders despite them not coming through for us last time out versus the Penguins. New York was clearly the better club Saturday night but Penguins netminder Tristan Jarry had other ideas. The Islanders threw everything at Pittsburgh, they registered their best Corsi percentage of the season at 57.78. They held a huge advantage in shots on goal as well, 35-18.
It’s the same song and dance for the Sabres. They grabbed a rare win versus the Devils last time out after losing four straight. They have struggled to find offense in their last five contests as they have averaged just 1.60 goals. Expect them to continue to struggle against the stingy Islanders who rank fourth in goals against per game at 2.35. Forward Taylor Hall, like many other Sabre forwards, is struggling. He has 10 points in 14 games but only one goal.
The Islanders have owned the Sabres over the course of the last two seasons with four straight victories. Included are recent victories on February 15th and 16th by the score of 3-1 and 3-0.
Ice Pick: New York Islanders money line-175
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