NHL Betting Guide: Friday 2/26/21
The NHL deals with COVID-19 postponements once again, with one game postponed yesterday and two more postponed tonight. As of now, there aren't any games affected this weekend, but it's definitely worth keeping an eye on.
Here are the top bets via our game projections.
Wild moneyline (-180): 2-Star Rating Out of 5
Over 5.5 (+100): 1-Star Rating Out of 5
The Minnesota Wild are charging up the West Division standings with four straight wins and now sit just one point out of a playoff position with three games in hand. Everything is going right for the Wild, as they have outscored their opponents by a 20-6 margin during their winning streak.
The jump in output follows a productive trend in which the Wild had created 10 or more high-danger chances in six of their last seven. That was part of why Minnesota has an expected goals-for percentage above 50.0% in four straight and six of seven.
One concern for the Wild, however, is that opponents are starting to pile up chances. Minnesota has given up 30-plus shots, 30-plus scoring chances, and 10-plus high-danger opportunities in two straight. Goaltending has held strong, which is reflected in their 93.8% save percentage and four goals against those games.
Offensive production is something that the Los Angeles Kings have been working on. Over the last eight games, the Kings are averaging 10.4 high-danger chances -- a bump off their 8.4 average from the 10 games prior. This has translated to increased output for the Kings, who have 27 goals over that eight-game sample.
This game should have more offense than the betting market implies. The total sits at 5.5 with the under juiced, making the over 5.5 +100 a one-star play, per our model. There's also an advantage in taking the Wild on the moneyline. Our projections give them a 68.0% chance of winning, and the current price implies that they have a 64.3% chance of winning. We rate the Wild moneyline as a two-star play.
Coyotes moneyline (+152): 1-Star Rating Out of 5
It's has not been the start to the year that the Colorado Avalanche were hoping for. They currently sit outside the playoff picture, although they do have games in hand. But they've dropped four of their last seven, and their advanced metrics are even more concerning.
The Avs have posted an expected goals-for percentage below 50.0% in five of their last seven, which implies that they are getting outplayed. The team has been largely ineffective recently, creating double-digit high-danger attempts in only two of eight, while putting up eight goals over their last five games.
This has been quite the lengthy home stretch for the Arizona Coyotes. Friday night's game against the Avs will be their eighth of nine straight home games. Through the first seven games, they are 3-2-2 and have a PDO of .988.
The Yotes are showing signs of improvement, with increases to high-danger chances in three straight games and more shots in four straight. That trend should continue against an Avs squad that has given up double-digit high-danger chances in five of their last seven.
For some reason, the Avs are steep favorites despite having some concerning metrics heading into Friday night's contest. Colorado has been struggling recently and hasn't been able to limit opponents. That could mean big things for a Coyotes offense that is due for positive regression. That aligns with our projections, which rate the Coyotes' moneyline as a one-star play.