NHL action continues on Wednesday night with a perfect three-game slate. Naturally, I have a bet locked in for all three of them as I try to find some momentum with my bets in the second half of the hockey season.
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NHL Best Bets Today
- Stars +122 vs. Maple Leafs
- Lightning vs. Rangers OVER 6 (-110)
- Blackhawks +184 vs. Wild
Stars vs. Maple Leafs prediction
There's no way the Stars deserve to be this big of underdogs in this spot against the Maple Leafs. Over their last 25 games they're fourth in the NHL in 5-on-5 expected goal percentage while being one of the best defensive teams in the NHL. The Maple Leafs certainly can't say the same thing, as they're 11th in that stat and have been a disaster in their end of the ice.
The Maple Leafs will be a strong candidate any time Ilya Samsonov is in the net. His .879 save percentage this season hasn't been getting much better and now he's in a tough spot against a Stars team that's fifth in the NHL in shooting percentage over their last 25 games.
I'll take Dallas as an underdog in Toronto.
Lightning vs. Rangers prediction
The Tampa Bay Lightning and New York Rangers offer two of the three top powerplay units in the NHL this season which means if there's any level of penalties for either team, we could see plenty of goals scored tonight. On top of that, the Lightning rank fourth in the NHL in shooting percentage over their last 25 games, finding the back of the net on 12.4% of their shots on goal.
Both teams are also in the top 11 in the NHL in expected goals for per 60 minutes. I don't see why the total in this game is set at just 6.0, so I won't hesitate to take the OVER.
Wild vs. Blackhawks prediction
It can be tough to stomach a bet on the Chicago Blackhawks, who are the worst team in hockey, but there's reason to back them as significant home underdogs to the Minnesota Wild tonight.
The Wild have been horrific offensively. They're second last in the NHL in expected goals for per 60 minutes of play over their last 25 games. They've also been getting some sub-par goaltending. Filip Gustavsson gets the start for them tonight and while he's the better of their two options, he still has a sub-.900 save percentage this season at .896.
If there's ever a time to take a chance on the Blackhawks, it's tonight.
Odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.
You can check out all of Iain's bets here!