The NHL regular season continues to churn its way towards the Stanley Cup Playoffs with less than a month left in the regular season. The action remains fast and furious as teams continue to jockey for position for one of the eight available playoffs spots in their respective conference.
This weekly betting guide takes a look at the teams that have not only separated themselves from the pack on the ice, but have provided a highly profitable return for anyone who enjoys wagering on the games. It will also provide a couple of free picks for Friday’s games
The Top Three Money Makers
The Detroit Red Wings held on to the top spot on this week’s list despite losing their last two games. They have a very pedestrian 5-4-1 record in their last 10 games, but continue to sport the highest return in the league on the money line at +1828. However, they have fallen to just one game over .500 against the puck line at 34-33. Detroit is two points behind St. Louis in the Central Division with 89 total points and they have an overall record of 43-21-3.
The battle for the top spot in the Northeast Division rages on with the Ottawa Senators just three points behind Boston for the lead. The Senators are 7-3 in their last 10 games and 35-25-8 overall with a total of 78 points. This recent surge has raised their return on the money line to +1488 and has them a very profitable 42-26 against the puck line.
The third-best return on the money line in the NHL belongs to the Nashville Predators at +1416. They are currently in fifth-place in the Western Conference with 83 points and have an overall record of 38-21-7. The Predators are 6-3-1 in their last 10 games which has helped to improve their overall record against the puck line to 36-30.
The next three best returns on the money line belong to the Phoenix Coyotes at +1405, the Pittsburgh Penguins at +1387, and the Winnipeg Jets at +1178. The Carolina Hurricanes are currently 14th in the Eastern Conference and basically riding out the string, but they currently have the best record in the league against the puck line at 43-24.
Friday Night’s Free Picks
The first game of interest on Friday’s schedule pits the Los Angeles Kings against the Red Wings in Detroit. Los Angeles is currently tied with San Jose for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West with 74 points but both are just three points behind Dallas for the lead in the Pacific Division. The Kings are riding a three-game winning streak and are 4-1 in their last five, but still a costly -667 on the money line overall.
Detroit has won three of the past four meetings including an 8-2 pasting in mid-December as a 173 home favorite. The Red Wings will once again open as prohibitive home favorites in this game, but given their
27-4-2 at home which includes a record-setting 23-game winning streak, there is no way their current losing streak reaches three games. The Free NHL Pick: Detroit 4 Los Angeles 2
The second game on the slate has the New York Rangers on the road against the Chicago Blackhawks. The Rangers will be playing their third road game in four nights following a 4-1 loss to New Jersey as 119 road favorites on Tuesday and a Thursday night tilt against Ottawa. New York currently has a stranglehold on the top spot in East with 10-point lead over Boston.
Chicago currently holds the sixth playoff spot in the West with 79 points and is 3-1 in its last four games. It is now 36-25-7 overall and 22-7-4 at home this season. The first time these two played this season, the Blackhawks skated to a 4-2 victory as a 134 road favorite. This time they find themselves in perfect position to take advantage of a road-weary Rangers’ team on Friday night. The Free NHL Pick: Chicago 3 New York 2
DJ is a freelance writer that concentrates on his true passion in life; the world of sports. He produces a number of articles each week for BangTheBook.com as well as a select group of other websites that specialize in providing the most up-to-date information for the sports gaming industry. His goal is to write insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player.