Phantom’s Saturday NHL Picks – February 11, 2012
Things are getting started early this Saturday, as there are six afternoon games, and six evening games, all of which are going to be on your Saturday pool ticket. It looks like it might not be an overly challenging week, so grab a coffee and your number two pencil, and get ready for the inside scoop to make your day a success. Hopefully you’ll be so happy Sunday morning that you forget all about the lack of football…
Nashville @ Boston
Believe it or not, Nashville has the better record lately, and more points in the standings. But Boston has had time to stew in their 6-0 loss to Buffalo. Look for them to be fired up for this game. I also generally like the home team in cross-conference battles. Boston at 1.45.
Florida @ New Jersey
Florida seems to be treading water these days, after a strong start to the season. They are barely hanging on to a playoff spot over Washington, and desperately need the win. Despite their need, I have trouble taking them over a very good, and surging Devils team. I’ll take the Jersey boys at 1.45.
Los Angeles @ New York Islanders
The odds make this one tough. L.A is the better team by far, and would usually be a no-brainer. However, this game features a 1pm Eastern Standard Time Zone start, which can be a nightmare for a travelling West Coast team. I was expecting to see L.A as a heavy favorite, which would allow me to jump on the juicy home team odds, but it turns out that’s not the case. Proline has obviously factored that in and has the odds as basically even. So in that case I’m back to taking the better team. Los Angeles at 1.70.
New York Rangers @ Philadelphia
If you plan on watching any of the early games today, this is the one to watch. It should be a tight, high-scoring, physical game. And played between two of the top teams in the East. The Rangers have won all four of their prior meetings this season, but three of those games were in New York. I actually like Philly to break the streak here; as I don’t see them getting swept by their division rival, and an afternoon home game is the perfect scenario. I’ll take Philly at 1.70.
Winnipeg @ Pittsburgh
Winnipeg really needs to win if they want a shot at the post season, but they have trouble doing that on the road. And we all know what the Penguins are like at home. Pittsburgh at 1.30.
Edmonton @ Ottawa
This should be a fun game. Ottawa is trying to pull out of a slide, and Edmonton is randomly unpredictable. I like the Sens, but I won’t discount Edmonton at 2 to 1. Ottawa at 1.55.
Tampa Bay @ Buffalo
Can you believe these teams are deadlocked in the standings, 10 points out of first? The Sabres should be able to win this one at home, but wow is Tampa getting good odds! This is one of those games that I would probably take Buffalo in the pool, and Tampa straight up. Tampa at 2.10.
Montreal @ Toronto
It’s hard not to like this classic Saturday night showdown, even if this one does seem a little one-sided. Montreal is the winners of three straight, Toronto losers of two, and if it was in Montreal I would give them the edge, but it’s not, and I won’t. Toronto at 1.50.
Colorado @ St. Louis
St. Louis should be the talk of the town, with only three home losses in regulation. But they seem to be in their division leaders shadow as Detroit sports only two. Either way I wouldn’t want to play either of these teams at home. St. Louis at 1.40.
Columbus @ Minnesota
Columbus is on the road, in the basement, and close to possibly losing their captain. Just don’t pick them. Minnesota at 1.35.
Chicago @ Phoenix
Chicago is having serious goaltending issues right now, as Crawford can’t seem to hold onto the number one job despite the stellar team in front of him. Backup goalie Ray Emery isn’t playing much better either. But in this tilt it shouldn’t matter, as Chicago’s offense should more than compensate. Chicago at 1.55.
Vancouver @ Calgary
I love the western Canadian matchup, but as these teams are in the same division, they seem to be in different leagues right now. Calgary has won a few lately, but the Canucks are far superior. Vancouver at 1.45.
OWC (Odds Worth Considering)
New York Islanders 1.80
That’s it for this week. Look for more Phantom picks coming next week. And as always, good luck, and let me know how you did!