NHL Predictions: November 23 Including Calgary Flames vs Pittsburgh Penguins

CALGARY, AB - OCTOBER 25: Calgary Flames Center Mikael Backlund (11) and Pittsburgh Penguins Winger Sam Poulin (22) take a face-off during the third period of an NHL game between the Calgary Flames and the Pittsburgh Penguins on October 25, 2022, at the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, AB. (Photo by Brett Holmes/Icon Sportswire via NHL/Getty Images)

Welcome back to another day of NHL Predictions. Each day, Last Word on Hockey takes a look at the games that are happening and gives our predictions for each one, breaking down head-to-head and other factors that may play in. We also have a featured game of the day, which is considered must-watch TV. Today’s featured game for NHL Predictions is the Calgary Flames vs the Pittsburgh Penguins.

NHL Predictions: Calgary Flames vs Pittsburgh Penguins

Winnipeg Jets vs Minnesota Wild

Head-to-Head Jets 0-0 Wild

The Winnipeg Jets visit the Minnesota Wild in the season’s first meeting between the two divisional rivals. Winnipeg enters with a record of 11-5-1 and are currently tied with the defending Stanley Cup Champions, Colorado Avalanche, for second place in the Central division. The Jets are 6-2-0  in November, with their most recent win coming in overtime over the Carolina Hurricanes. As we near the season’s first quarter, Jets defenceman Josh Morrisey is playing his way into Norris consideration. Morrisey is averaging over a point a game with three goals and 15 assists through 17 games.

The Minnesota Wild haven’t been performing as well as expectations were coming into the season. The Wild take a league-high 14 penalty minutes per game; however, their penalty kill sits 12th in the league. Scoring has been a problem early for the Wild also, as they have averaged just 2.67 goals for per game, ranking 28th. Russian star Kirill Kaprizov leads Minnesota with ten goals and ten assists through 18 games. The Wild’s last game was an overtime win over the Carolina Hurricanes.

Morrisey and the Jets prevail in this one keeping pace with the Stars and Avalanche in the Central

Prediction: Jets win 3-2

Arizona Coyotes vs Carolina Hurricanes

Head-to-Head Coyotes 0-0 Hurricanes

The Carolina Hurricanes play host to the Arizona Coyotes in a battle between two teams on opposite sides of the NHL standings. The Hurricanes won both meetings last season, outscoring the Coyotes 7-4. Carolina has a 10-5-4 record and has a three-game losing streak after dropping each of their previous three contest in overtime. The Hurricanes haven’t been very strong offensively this season, as their shooting percentage, powerplay, and goals per game all rank near the bottom of the league.

The Coyotes are a rinse-and-repeat of past seasons as they sit 30th in the overall standings. Arizona has a record of 6-9-2 and has lost four in a row. Arizona looks to be amongst teams battling for the next generational star Connor Bedard in this year’s draft lottery sweepstakes. Clayton Keller, the Coyotes’ lone superstar calibre player, has seven goals and 11 assists through 17 games. So, for these NHL predictions, the Hurricanes will take the win.

Prediction: Hurricanes win 4-1 

Boston Bruins vs Florida Panthers

Head-to-Head Bruins 1-0 Panthers

The Florida Panthers host the Boston Bruins in a cross-division matchup. This is the second meeting of the season between the two clubs. In the first game, the Bruins picked up a 5-3 win, riding a 38-save performance from Linus Ullmark. Jake Debrusk notched two goals and an assist leading the way offensively.

The Boston Bruins continue to roll as they build a healthy lead in the Atlantic Division. Their last game was a 5-3 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. Boston sits first in the league with a 17-2-0 record and also leads the league in both goals scored and goals allowed.

Florida has dropped their last three games and has a record of 9-8-2 this season. Previous season’s President Trophy winners have been struggling to find the consistency that led them to a franchise record of 122 last year. Matthew Tkachuk has seen another level this season, scoring eight goals and 17 assists for 25 points through 17 games.

Brad Marchand was not in the lineup for the first meeting between these two. With Marchand and Tkachuk, two of the league’s most significant pests, you never really know what to expect. This one will be highly entertaining with what could be a divisional playoff matchup in the spring.

Prediction: Bruins win 5-2

Montreal Canadiens vs Columbus Blue Jackets

Head-to-Head Canadiens 0-1 Blue Jackets

In the season’s first meeting, the Columbus Blue Jackets picked up a 6-4 win. Blue Jackets forward Sean Kuraly had an impressive night during the outing, scoring twice and adding an assist in the victory. Joonas Korpisalo stopped 38 of 42 shots, while his counterpart Samuel Montembault had a poor showing, allowing five goals on 28 shots.

The Montreal Canadiens suffered a shellacking from the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night, dropping the contest 7-2. The Canadiens currently sit sixth in the Atlantic division with a 9-9-1 record. Montreal has shown glimpses of how promising the future will be and is led offensively by youngsters Nick Suzuki, Cole Caulfield and Kirby Dach.

The Columbus Blue Jackets have a 7-10-1 record entering tonight’s game placing them firmly in last place in the Metropolitan division. Ranking 31st of 32, the Blue Jackets’ powerplay has been nothing short of horrendous, clicking at just a 14% success rate.

Montreal evens up the season series and picks up a victory tonight.

Canadiens win 5-4 in Overtime

St Louis Blues vs Buffalo Sabres

Head-to-Head Blues 0-0 Sabres

Tonight marks the first matchup of the season between the two cross-conference clubs. Last season the St Louis Blues won both contests over the Buffalo Sabres. In the two games last year, St Louis outscored Buffalo 11-5; however, this season’s Sabres have shown more resiliency and growth.

The Blues are coming in hot now, riding a seven-game winning streak. The winning streak comes after an eight-game losing streak where the wheels were falling off in St Louis. Captain Ryan O’Reilly is turning the page from his disappointing start and now has three goals and three assists in his last six games.

Buffalo is coming off a 7-2 offensive outburst over the Canadiens Tuesday night. Goaltender Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen will get the start for the Sabres. Jeff Skinner has himself a five-point night against Montreal, scoring two goals and adding three assists.

The Sabres put an end to the Blues’ hot streak and handed them a loss for this NHL predictions.

Prediction: Sabres win 6-4

Calgary Flames vs Pittsburgh Penguins

Head-to-Head Flames 1-0 Penguins

For the last set of NHL predictions for today, we’ll look at our featured game of the night. The Pittsburgh Penguins struggled when they made their trip through Western Canada in October. The Penguins dropped all three games on the road trip, including a 4-1 loss to the Calgary Flames. Flames starting netminder Jacob Markstrom had an excellent match against Pittsburgh, stopping 32 of 33 shots. The Flames got two goals and an assist from centre Nazem Kadri in the contest. Evgeni Malkin scored the lone goal for the Penguins on the powerplay.

Following the western Canadian road trip, the Penguins continued to pile up losses as they went on a 6-game losing streak.  Pittsburgh has since responded nicely, going 5-1-1 since the losing streak. Crosby has been his superstar self this season and has posted 27 points in 19 games. The Penguins have no shortage of offence as they average 3.68 goals per game, good for fourth in the league. Goaltending and their defensive play have not been as good, as they allow 3.37 goals per game.

Calgary, much like Pittsburgh, has had a season of ups and downs so far. The Flames came out of the gates playing great hockey but also endured a lengthy losing streak, dropping seven straight. Since snapping the losing streak, Calgary has gone 4-1- with their most recent win coming over the Philadelphia Flyers 5-2. Jonathon Huberdeau struggled early in his Flames career, as he has just three goals and six assists through 15 games.

Pittsburgh evens the season series with a big victory on home ice.

Prediction: Penguins win 5-2

Main photo:

Embed from Getty Images