Welcome back to NHL Predictions. Daily, Last Word on Hockey brings you a prediction and analysis of every game on the schedule. This will also feature a significant game on the schedule that is must-watch hockey. Today’s NHL Predictions featured game is the Colorado Avalanche vs the Arizona Coyotes. Be sure to check out the other games NHL predictions have today to stay informed.
New Jersey Devils vs Carolina Hurricanes
Head-to-Head: Devils 0-0 Hurricanes
The New Jersey Devils are not playing up to their capabilities or expectations. They’re just 2-2-3 at home as of this writing. They’ve lost two shootout games and blew a wild one on Wednesday night to the puzzling Tampa Bay Lightning 7-6 in overtime. They had built a 5-3 early lead into the last stanza only to allow the Lighting to catch up and surpass them 6-5 by giving up three unanswered goals. They did manage to tie the game with just eight seconds left on a goal by Kyle Palmieri. They then lost in overtime on a tally by Tyler Johnson. This matchup will be the second game of a back-to-back for the Devils, then they will have four more road games. Things are just not going well for the Devils.
The Carolina Hurricanes started out the 2019-20 season like a hurricane by winning five straight games. They’ve cooled off since then by going just 3-3-1. They are an excellent defensive team by just allowing 2.50 goals against per game, placing them seventh in the NHL in that category. The Hurricanes will also be facing a back-to-back game schedule playing the Detroit Red Wings on Friday night. Surprisingly Dougie Hamilton is leading this team with six goals, seven assists in 12 games. Thus far, Sebastian Aho is not really paying the dividends of his $8.45 million deal. He has just three goals, three assists thus far.
Prediction: Hurricanes win 6-3
Calgary Flames vs Columbus Blue Jackets
Head-to-Head: Flames 0-0 Blue Jackets
The Calgary Flames have not exactly set the league on fire… so to speak. They just don’t seem to be anywhere near the team they were last season. They are just 7-6-2 as of this writing and can’t put more than a two-game winning streak together. Worse yet, they have been involved in five overtime games going 1-2 in games decided in overtime and 2-0 in shootouts. The fact that they are in such close games has got to be a concern. Last season they were 9-5-1. One thing is guaranteed, signing Matthew Tkachuk to an extension was a wise decision. He has collected six goals, seven assists showing he’s worth the three-year $21 million contract he received. David Rittich has not been that great with a 6-4-2 record along with a .906 save percentage and a 3.02 GAA.
The Columbus Blue Jackets are doing better than expected considering they lost so many key players. As of this writing, they are 5-5-2 and with them allowing 43 goals and having a -12 goal differential, things could be worse. Scoring has been a challenge with the Jackets only scoring 2.58 goals a game.
Prediction: Flames win 4-1
St. Louis Blues vs Minnesota Wild
Head-to-Head: Blues 1-0 Wild
This part of NHL predictions features a rematch between two Central Division opponents who met on Wednesday night. That game saw the St. Louis Blues winning 2-1. The Blues must play back-to-back when they face the Blue Jackets on Friday night before matching up again against the Wild. The Blues, of course, are attempting to play pretty much the rest of the season without their star player Vladimir Tarasenko who underwent shoulder surgery and will be lost for five months. The St. Louis Blues thus far are not faring too badly without Tarasenko. They have managed a 3-1 record without him, but how long will that last?
The Minnesota Wild has recovered a bit from their horrendous start where they lost six of their first seven games. Since then they have gone 3-3 to attempt to get back to respectability. Yet, this team is very difficult to figure out. They rank 27th in goals scored and 24th in goals-against. Not good numbers. If things don’t start to improve there more than likely will be some changes either in the front office or on the ice… or both.
Prediction: Blues win 6-2
Colorado Avalanche vs Arizona Coyotes
Head-to-Head: Avalanche 1-0 Coyotes
The Colorado Avalanche won the first meeting of these two clubs on October 12th when Andre Burakovsky won it in overtime in Denver. Of course, the Av’s are hurting with injuries to two major players. First Mikko Rantanen went down with an injury and then Gabriel Landeskog joined him. That’s two-thirds of their best line incapacitated. While the Avs are an excellent, deep team they may feel the effects of losing both players simultaneously.
The Arizona Coyotes have been on the upswing this 2019-20 season with a record displaying they will be more competitive this season. They stand at 7-4-1 recod. Last season they were 7-5 after 12 games but this year they have added Phil Kessel and Carl Soderberg to their lineup. The two have pitched in but Kessel is sitting at a mere two goals and five assists in 12 games. The guy really showing offensive production is Nick Schmaltz with four goals and seven assists. He’s shooting at a 22.2 percent pace. It seems he’s over his injury and going full force now.
Prediction: Coyotes win 4-3
Winnipeg Jets vs Vegas Golden Knights
Head-to-Head: Jets 0-0 Golden Knights
The Winnipeg Jets are another team that hasn’t really been cleared for take-off yet this season. Accumulating just a 6-7 record they are feeling the effects of a depleted blue line. Now, Patrik Laine is hurt along with the uncertainty of Dustin Byfuglien‘s return status, this puts the Jets at a disadvantage. Kyle Connor has just six points in 13 games so the Jets woes are starting to creep up on them. They will have their hands full being shorthanded playing the Golden Knights who pack the T-Mobile Arena every game.
The Vegas Golden Knights have played pretty well with a 8-5-1 record good for second place in the Pacific Division. They have an explosive offence featuring Mark Stone who already has 17 points this young season. Both Max Pacioretty and William Karlsson both have collected 12 points while Reilly Smith is no slouch with 11 points including seven goals. The Golden Knights know how to win and should pass the Jets at Mach speed in this game.
Prediction: Golden Knights win 5-1
Vancouver Canucks vs San Jose Sharks
Head-to-Head: Canucks 0-0 Sharks
Since starting the season off with a 0-2 record the Vancouver Canucks have gone 8-1-1 over their next 10 games. Pretty impressive to say the least. They possess a good, young team with such rising stars as Elias Pettersson, Brock Boeser, and Quinn Hughes. Between that trio, they have collected 42 points. Then, they added a very qualified J.T. Miller who has six goals and eight assists in 12 games. What was a cap nightmare for Tampa Bay to pay Miller, has turned into a gold mine for the Canucks. This team is one to watch this season. They may squeeze into a playoff spot if they keep playing this well.
The San Jose Sharks are just not scaring anyone this season. They had a horrible start and really haven’t improved much since then. It seems they may have underestimated the value of one Joe Pavelski. So far they are 4-8-1 and have had the embarrassment of losing to the lowly Ottawa Senators. They start a six-game homestand tonight against the Jets and their offence is really stagnant. They have only managed four goals in their last three games, all losses. Paying a fortune for Erik Karlsson may be their downfall… how much can one player do?
Prediction: Canucks win 5-2
Chicago Blackhawks vs Los Angeles Kings
Head-to-Head: Blackhawks 1-0 Kings
In a game featuring two teams seemingly going nowhere, the Chicago Blackhawks seem to be going with a youth movement experiment to see how their young Hawks can play. They called up defenceman Adam Boqvist to get a look at him. Veteran D-man Brent Seabrook is quite upset to be sitting out two straight games as a healthy scratch but you can’t deny that head coach Jeremy Colliton is trying to get his team going. They also unloaded forward Brendan Perlini to the Detroit Red Wings. The winds of change are hitting Chicago.
The Los Angeles Kings can’t seem to get going this season. Last season they started 4-8-1, this season 4-9. Some things never change and for the most part, this L.A. team looked to improve this year. That hasn’t been the case thus far. They still have a ways to go.
Prediction: Blackhawks win 5-1
That’s all for NHL Predictions! Tune in each day for more!