Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:51 PM
NHL Best Bets, Score Predictions for Monday Apr. 5
NHL Daily Free Picks & Predictions
VegasInsider.com NHL expert Matt Blunt provides his score predictions and best bets for one NHL game on Monday, Apr. 5, 2021.
Vegas Golden Knights vs St. Louis Blues
- Money-Line Odds: Vegas -129; St. Louis +110
- Total (Over-Under): 5.5
Score Prediction: St. Louis 3 Vegas 2
Best Bet: Blues ML
Wasn't able to get there at the end of last week with the Blues in Colorado, but those that prefer to go the safer route with big underdogs and take the +1.5 PL were able to cash a ticket on the Blues in their 3-2 loss. The defeat made it six in a row and eight out of 10 for the stumbling Blues, but the last three have all been by a single goal (two as big dogs, one as a big favorite), so it's not like there haven't been signs of them potentially turning the corner soon.
I thought it would come in Colorado on Friday night, but the Blues just couldn't get that third goal to tie things up. In fact, St. Louis has scored two or less in all six of the losses during this six-game losing streak. Far from a ringing endorsement to back the Blues tonight or any other time in the near future I know.
But when my opinion on the Blues going into that two-game set with Colorado was basically the same one I've had on them all year – look to fade them as overvalued favorites against California teams etc, and look to play them as underdogs against the best in the division – a pair of one-goal losses to the Avalanche, arguably the hottest team in hockey these days, isn't going to sway me off of that line of thought just yet.
Heck, prior to those two games Colorado had won 10 of 12 and all but the first win in that stretch came by a margin of at least two goals. They had scored at least four goals in nine of their previous 10 games before those two with St Louis, and on consecutive nights the Blues held Colorado to 3 and 2 goals respectively, and not losing by multiple tallies either.
Framed in that light, the Blues recent stretch of losses doesn't seem as bad as they look on the surface as screams of St Louis falling out of a playoff spot with all these losses is all you can hear right now.
Meanwhile, Vegas comes into this game having lost three in a row themselves heading into this game, all as -150 or greater chalk and going 0-for-10 on the power play in that span as well. The Knights have been having their own issues scoring goals too, scoring 3 or more in just half of their past 10 games overall, and not once during this three-game stretch of futility.
Far less to worry about overall if you're the Knights given that they are still sitting with a 24-12 SU record overall and will comfortably be in the playoffs this year. But home ice in that opening round is now on the table with Vegas owning just a two-point lead on Minnesota – the team they just dropped two games too - and for a team that's got a few questions in net to still answer (Who's their guy going into the playoffs? Is Fleury starting to fatigue? Do they have complete trust in Lehner?), Vegas not being able to score on offense right now has really become a problem.
From the Knights' perspective, playing St. Louis can hopefully help those offensive issues as in four previous meetings this year, Vegas has gone 3-1 SU and scored at least four times in all four meetings.
Those are probably other reasons as to why we will see this line on Vegas move higher before it drops, as the overall market perception on St. Louis couldn't have really changed either since before that Friday night game with Colorado either. The Blues were a team to fade for most then, and doing so has cashed two more tickets since that time.
Now while it's tougher to take the stance that the Blues are “undervalued” here in regards to my general line of thought on this team this year, a home underdog that nobody really wants does bring a different definition of undervalued to the table.
St. Louis deserves to be a home dog here for sure, but they also just closed around the same +110 range on March 22nd in Vegas as a road underdog at the beginning of this six-game losing streak. Five more losses later combined with market perception dropping on St Louis, and they come into this home game at basically the same price? Not sure I completely understand that logic and am happy to put up a unit to go against it.
The Blues showed me enough positives in those two games with Colorado to have me believing this team is going to turn the corner soon. Can't say the same thing for the Knights during their losing run, and for a Knights team that's going to end up as a highly endorsed road favorite for this game, I'll gladly step out and back the Blues as a home dog looking to get just their 5th win on home ice this season.
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