NHL Best Bets: Stars vs. Avalanche Game Picks
Two of the top teams in the Western Conference are set to collide tonight, with the Dallas Stars visiting the Colorado Avalanche.
Dallas Stars (+136) vs. Colorado Avalanche (-164) Total: 6.5 (O+100, U-122)
Judging by the track records these teams have shown at the quarter point of the NHL season, this should be another great matchup, much like the one earlier this year which saw the Avs pick up a 3-2 victory. The Stars enter this matchup after losing 5-4 in overtime last night against the Winnipeg Jets, part of a 5-2-3 record over their past ten games. On the other hand, the Avs are sitting at 7-3 over that same sample size.
It’s hard to say what will ultimately transpire tonight because of the consistency we’ve seen from both teams early on. Special teams could ultimately play a significant factor, with the Stars boasting the second-ranked powerplay and third-ranked penalty kill, while the Avs have the top-ranked powerplay and 21st-ranked penalty kill.
Looking toward the projected goalie matchup tonight, the visiting Stars are expected to lean on Scott Wedgewood between the pipes, while the Avalanche should do the same with Alexandar Georgiev. The Stars’ backup netminder has posted a 4-3-1 record, paired with a .904 save percentage. In his first season with the Avs, Georgiev is 9-2-1 with a .929 save percentage. Knowing that it’s hard not to give the Avalanche an advantage in goal tonight.
Colorado was supposed to play against Nashville yesterday, but that game got postponed, which should actually give them an advantage tonight as the more rested team at home. As a result, targeting the Avs on the moneyline has some value tonight at -164.
Best Bet: Avalanche moneyline (-164)
Even with the Avalanche boasting one of the top offenses in the NHL, they haven’t actively been playing in high-scoring games of late. Over their past five games, four of those have gone under the total, which could continue again tonight, with the Stars sitting eleventh in the NHL in goals allowed per game while the Avs are in fourth. Despite both teams having top-ten offenses, it’s hard to ignore these trends we’ve seen from the Avs of late, especially on home ice, where they’ll dictate the matchup game. These teams also already met once this season, which saw just five goals scored, meaning we have a small amount of precedence to judge. As a result, there’s value here in targeting the under 6.5 at -122.
Best Bet: Under 6.5 (-122)
There are multiple superstar talents on the Colorado Avalanche roster, and you can always debate who the best one is. Nathan MacKinnon has continued to lead this Avs team from the bottom to the top, and he’s gotten off to another elite start to the regular season. Mackinnon hasn’t been scoring goals at a torrid pace and has just five, but he’s added 22 assists and now has 27 points over 18 games this season. In 34 career games against the Stars, Mackinnon has tallied 11 goals and 21 assists, which should give bettors confidence in him to light the lamp tonight. He’s currently listed at +108 to score, and there’s definite value in that price point with the Stars on leg two of a back-to-back.
Best Prop: Nathan MacKinnon to Record Over 0.5 Goals (+108)