Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:51 AM
Best Bets, Score Predictions for Monday Feb. 15
NHL Daily Free Picks & Predictions
VegasInsider.com NHL expert Matt Blunt provides his score predictions and best bets for three NHL games on Monday Feb. 15, 2021.
Winnipeg Jets vs. Edmonton Oilers
- Money-Line Odds: Winnipeg +115; Edmonton -135
- Total (Over-Under): 6.5
Score Prediction: Edmonton 4 Winnipeg 2
Best Bet: Oilers ML
Although four of the six wins the Oilers have gotten in their last seven games have come against Ottawa, the macro thing bettors can take from the majority of those victories is that the Oilers are starting to figure out things on the defensive end.
With the likes of McDavid and Draisaitl up front, scoring goals is never going to be a prolonged concern for this team, it will be their commitment and execution in their own end that will take them as far as they are able to go this year.
Again, they held down the Senators in three of the four games, but a 3-0 shutout against Montreal – even in a fatigue spot for the Habs – has to be taken as a positive sign moving forward - as they are now sit 3rd best in the North Division in xGA/60 – the one that's been the highest scoring division from basically the outset of the year. Only Montreal and Calgary have better numbers inside the division than the Oilers do coming into Monday's action.
Edmonton leads the entire league in xGF/60 at 3.44 currently, as the offense is not an issue right now. Keep opponents under three goals though and the wins will come in bunches for Edmonton, and that's precisely what they've done during this run.
Winnipeg just doesn't have the offense to consistently keep up with a scoring pace like that (xGF/60 at 2.57 for 25th in NHL) and Edmonton already potted four goals in both games against the Jets earlier this season. The Jets attack is a far cry from the one that scored 6 in one of those games to split the two-game set (Edmonton's defensive play is a far cry as well) and with current form being on the Oilers side, I'll lay it with them tonight.
Remember, in those two previous games against Winnipeg, Edmonton closed as a -140 road favorite in that first game. Don't agree with them being priced in the same range at home with how well they've been playing of late.
Calgary Flames vs. Vancouver Canucks
- Money-Line Odds: Calgary -135; Vancouver +115
- Total (Over-Under): 6
Score Prediction: Calgary 5 Vancouver 4
Best Bet: Over 6
Would have had a very hard time believing you if you had said that we would have a pair of 3-1 results through two games of this four-game set between Calgary and Vancouver. Vancouver's been one of the worst defensive teams in the NHL all season long, but a return home after a long road trip has seemingly helped in that regard.
Calgary's four goals have still come in four of the six periods played though, so Vancouver is still prone to those defensive lapses, just not as frequent at the moment.
Both teams know how to put the puck in the back of the net as well, and trusting this 'under' run of four straight the Canucks are on entering this game is almost asking to play with fire. Calgary's on a 6-2 O/U run after scoring two or fewer in their last outing, and while Vancouver's defensive issues may be on the up and up, they were far too serious to be fixed in the matter of about a week and just a few games.
Still am of the mindset that the probablilty of us seeing all four of these games between Vancouver and Calgary cash 'under' tickets was always going to be a tough prop option to cash (if it was offered), and now that the result is already halfway there, stepping out and firing on that line of thought isn't a hard line to take tonight.
Anaheim Ducks vs. San Jose Sharks
- Money-Line Odds: Anaheim -105; San Jose -115
- Total (Over-Under): 5.5
Score Prediction: San Jose 4 Anaheim 3
Best Bet: Over 5.5
Hockey bettors everywhere in the market know about Anaheim being a great 'under' team this year, with the quality defense they play, likely because they have to with minimal offensive threats up front. A team that keeps pucks out of their own net and struggles to score themselves is always going to be popular with 'under' players, but the Ducks are still more likely to regress to the mean (offensively and defensively) in my view.
More importantly, I don't think oddsmakers can keep putting up 5.5 totals for San Jose games, let alone opening up at plus-money on them as well.
The Sharks are as opposite as it gets relative to the Ducks style, as San Jose can score goals in bunches, and give up goals the same way. The six times the Sharks have had a total close at 5.5, the O/U record is a perfect 6-0 to the 'over', with no fewer than seven goals scored in any one of those six contests.
Based on that alone, I think firing on this 'over' makes sense, even with Anaheim and the concerns they bring to any 'over' ticket.