Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:05 AM
In the Crease - Week 21
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The Pittsburgh Penguins enter play on Tuesday just one point behind the Washington Capitals in the Metropolitan Division. A huge part of their success this season has been their ability to win on home ice, especially since they're a rather dismal 12-15-3 away from the Steel City this season. The Pens are 23-7-1 at home, including an impressive 11 consecutive victories on friendly ice dating back to a 4-0 setback against Cam Ward and the Carolina Hurricanes on Jan. 4. During the span, 10 of those victories have been in regulation, with only a 6-5 victory against the Boston Bruins requiring overtime. The Pens are posting plenty of offense during the span, too, averaging 5.0 goals per game. As such, it's no surprise that the 'over' is 8-3 in the home winning streak.
Home Production - Part Deux
The Los Angeles Kings have been on a road odyssey across the East Coast, last seeing the bright lines of Hollywood on Feb. 7. They're rounding the corner and heading for home, winning a 3-1 game at Chicago on Monday night to even up at 3-3 on the seven-game trip with one last stop in Winnipeg awaiting them Tuesday night. The Kings likely can't wait to enjoy a little home cooking, as they're a solid 14-9-3 at home, and way more productive offensively at Staples Center, too. In fact, the 'over' has hit in five of their past seven on home ice. That's something to remember with the Kings back home Thursday against the Dallas Stars, kicking off a three-game homestand. They'll play eight of their next nine after Tuesday's road game, with only a quick L.A. to Vegas junket on Feb. 27 in the second of a back-to-back set.
Tuesday, February 20
The Florida Panthers head to the center of the hockey universe looking to cool off the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Panthers might be just the team to do it, as they have won seven of their past nine overall, including a 5-1 mark in the past six on the road. They're also 7-1 in their past eight against Atlantic Division foes. However, they're playing in the third of a four-game stretch, as they're 1-4 in their past five in the third game of a 3-in-4 situation. They're also 1-5 in their past six against teams with a winning overall mark. The Leafs are 6-0 in their past six at home, and 6-1 in the past seven. However, they're also in the third game of a 3-in-4, and they're just 14-38 in their past 52 in the stiuation. The home team has won five of the past six meetings in this series.
The Sharks make their way to St. Louis looking to get on track. While they have won four of their past five, they're just 1-6 in their past seven against Central Division foes, and 1-9 in their past 10 on the road against teams with a home winning percentage over .600 or better. They Blues aren't terribly impressive lately, either, winning just twice in the seven against winning teams while going 2-6 in their past eight against Pacific Division clubs. With both teams performing poorly against the opposition, perhaps the total is the play. The 'under' is 15-7-2 in the past 24 meetings in the Lou.
Wednesday, February 21
It's a light night in the NHL on Wednesday, with just three games on tap. The Vegas Golden Knights are looking to bounce back on home ice against the visiting Calgary Flames after a 2-0 shutout loss against the Anaheim Ducks on Monday night. It was just the third time the expansion team was shut out this season, and only the second time on home ice. These teams have met just once, with the Golden Knights coming away with a 4-2 win on the road back on Jan. 30. Calgary lost 2-1 in overtime to Boston on Monday, and perhaps a Vegas trip will do them some good. The Flames are 8-2-1 across their past 11 on the road.
Thursday, February 22
The New Jersey Devils have been teetering on the cut line for the playoffs in the Eastern Conference in recent weeks, but they rattled off four straight wins from Feb. 13-18 to give them a little breathing room, including a key 3-2 win at Carolina on Sunday in overtime. In past years it was all about defense and goaltending for the Devs, but lately it is all about offense. They are averaging 4.3 goals per game during their winning streak, and the 'over' has hit in five of the past six outings overall heading into Tuesday. The Wild have been impressive on the road lately, winning three of the past four, doing a little better away from home. The 'over' is also 4-1 across their past five on road ice.
The Avalanche and Oilers will tangle in Northern Alberta, and Colorado is looking to return the favor after losing to Edmonton 4-2 on home ice Sunday. The last time the Avalanche visited Edmonton they came away with a 4-3 victory in overtime behind Jonathan Bernier. This season has been the closest between these two sides, as the Oilers swept the three-game season series in 2016-17, and the Avalanche broomed the Oil in three games during the 2015-16 campaign.
Friday, February 23
The Hurricanes have been a thorn in the side of the Penguins lately, winning two of the three meetings this season, including 4-0 on Jan. 4 in the Steel City, the last loss for the Pens at home in 12 tries. The teams have met just once at PNC Arena in Raleigh this season, and it was the Hurricanes coming away with a hard-fought 2-1 win behind Cam Ward on Dec. 29. He has allowed just two goals in three meetings against the Pens this season, going 2-1-0 with a stellar 1.35 GAA and .951 save percentage.
Saturday, February 24
The Bruins and Maple Leafs tangle in Toronto in a key Atlantic Division game on Hockey Night in Canada. The Leafs are looking to avenge a 4-1 setback in Beantown on Feb. 3, as Tuukka Rask was nearly unbeatable. However, the Maple Leafs led the season series 2-1, and they swept a home-and-home back on Nov. 10-11, including a 3-2 overtime victory on home ice in the first battle. The 'under' is 3-0 in the three meetings this season, and 6-0-1 in the past seven meetings overall. The 'under' is also 3-0-1 in the past four battles at Air Canada Centre.
The Ducks and Coyotes will face off in the desert, and Arizona is proving they're not the same pushover they were earlier in the season. Arizona has won four in a row entering play on Tuesday, and they're allowing just 1.0 goals per game during the impressive span. They're also a respectable 5-3-3 across their past 11 on home ice. The sides last met on New Year's Eve on the Pond, with the Ducks coming away with a 5-2 win behind John Gibson. He actually suffered a lower-body injury in Vegas on Monday, so it's uncertain if he'll be ready. Ryan Miller is just as capable, however, as he came on and stopped 20 shots in the final period to preserve the shutout win. The Ducks won the first meeting of the season, also on home ice, by a 5-4 margin on Opening Night back on Oct. 5.