Top Shelf Picks: Best NHL Bets Today (Expect Plenty of Goals in Islanders vs. Maple Leafs)

Jan 11, 2024; Elmont, New York, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Mike Reilly (2) fights for the
Jan 11, 2024; Elmont, New York, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Mike Reilly (2) fights for the / Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL All-Star weekend is behind us and it's time to get back to regular season hockey.

There are two games set to take place on Monday night, including a potential Stanley Cup Final preview between the Colorado Avalanche and New York Rangers. If you're looking for plays for tonight's two games, you've come to the right place.

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Best NHL Bets Today

  • Islanders vs. Maple Leafs OVER 6.5 (-120)
  • Avalanche -110 vs. Rangers

Islanders vs. Maple Leafs prediction

The Maple Leafs and Islanders both rank inside the top 12 in 5-on-5 expected goals for per 60 minutes over their last 25 games and New York, while typically a more defensive team, has all the makings of an OVER team this season.

Toronto also has a glaring goaltender issue this season and while Ilya Samsonov has managed to string together a couple of solid starts, he still has an abysmal .878 save percentage on the season. Until he can prove he can have success over a larger sample size of games this season, betting the OVER in games in which he starts isn't the worst strategy in the world.

Avalanche vs. Rangers prediction

The New York Rangers thrive on special teams, sporting one of the best power play and penalty kill units in the NHL. Unfortunately, that's not going to be enough to beat the Colorado Avalanche, who were playing some elite hockey before the All-Star break.

The Rangers are just 23rd in 5-on-5 expected goal percentage over their last 25 games, while the Avalanche come in at 11th. I'll back Colorado in a pick'em spot tonight at Madison Square Garden.

Odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.

You can check out all of Iain's bets here!