Poor goaltending has us hitting the Over in Montreal, and the NHL best bets you need to make this week

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Several teams in the NHL, including the Ottawa Senators and Montreal Canadiens who meet up on Wednesday night, have struggled between the pipes which has us wagering on the Overs as we head into a new week of on-ice action.

We bring you the best hockey betting notes, trends and predictions so you can make some bucks on the pucks. **video

FLAMES WON’T MELT THIS AVALANCHE

On Monday,the second-place team in the Western Conference, the Colorado Avalanche, will host the Calgary Flames who will be on the front-end of a back-to-back road trip. The Avs offense is at full strength with its top-line finally back together after nearly a monthapart due to injuries.

The reunion is bad news for the league as Colorado has ripped off six straight wins and have outscored its opponents 26-10 since November 27.

Calgary has been playing good hockey of late, having won its last four, but those wins came against the Sabres (2), Kings and Senators while the Flames are scoring just 2.1 goals over thei last 10.

Avs’ starting goalie Philipp Grubauer is questionable after leaving Saturday’s game, but backup Pavel Francouz is no slouch and has won his last three games, holding opponents to just four goals on 92 shots.

Colorado is 7-1 ATS at home in its last eight wins this year. We are stacking this game and playing the Avalanche 3-way ML (-105) as well as the -1.5 for +170.

WILD FOR THE OVER

Since starting goalie Devan Dubnyk went down with an injury on November 17, the Minnesota Wild have allowed the third-most goals in the league. Minny is 3-0-2 O/U in its last five thanks to scoring three or more goals in each of its home games where they average 3.8 goals a game.

The Anaheim Ducks will travel to Minnesota on Tuesday for the second game of a two-game road trip before heading back to California. The Ducks have been playing some loose hockey on the road this year as they are 6-2 O/U in their last eight road games as their penalty kill is getting scored on nearly 40 percent of the time since mid-November — the worst-mark in the league.

We expect the Wild to start backup Kappo Kahkonen who is only 23 and has played just two games in the league. The rookie is due for a poor performance after two solid starts to begin his career and teams having more tape on him. Take the Over 6 and we will pound it if it opens at 5.5.

DETROIT SAD WINGS

The Winnipeg Jets will welcome the Detroit Red Wings to the Bell MTS Place (terrible name) with open arms on Tuesday as the Wings are riding a laughable 11-game losing streak. Over this shameful streak that began on November 14, Detroit’s opponents are scoring an average of 4.4 goals a game and have scored four or more in nine of the 11 games.

Things won’t get better for Detroit as they could be without their leading scorer in Tyler Bertuzzi who is playing close to 20 minutes a game but left Saturday’s game with an injury.

We are taking the Jets -1.5 as Detroit is 0-7 ATS in its last seven.

POOR PLAY POWERS OVER

On Wednesday, we turn our attention to two Eastern Conference teams who sit 13th and 14th in points over their last 10 games. The Montreal Canadiens have recently brought up rookie goalie Cayden Primeau after waiving backup Keith Kinklaid.

The move is an effort to spark something from the club as the Canadiens sit on the outskirts of a playoff spot and are tied for the league lead in goals allowed over their last 10. Although the Habs are just 1-4 O/U in their last five games as of Monday, they are 4-1-1 O/U in their previous six contests at home.

The Ottawa Senators have rewarded Over backers when they travel as the 14th-place Sens are 4-1 O/U in their last five road contests. This will also be their seventh road game in an eight-game stretch.

Making matters worse for Ottawa is the fact that its starting goalie Craig Andersen, who just returned from injury, was lifted from Saturday’s game against Philadelphia with another injury and his status is up in the air. We are banging the Over 6.5 on this Canadian hump day contest.

GOALIE PROFILE: TRISTAN JARRY, PITTSBURGH PENGUINS

Tristan Jarry has stopped all 61 shots he has faced over his last two starts and hasn’t allowed a goal in nearly 140 minutes of action. The Pens have also won five of his last six starts as the 24-year-old netminder is becoming one of a handful of bright young goaltenders in the league. Incredibly, Jarry has allowed more than two goals in just two of his 11 games this year and sits first in goals against (1.81) and save percentage (.943).

The Montreal Canadiens will try their best to solve Jarry on Tuesday and will probably have to do so at even strength. Montreal’s power play is in the bottom-10 over the last three weeks at 15 percent which is slightly better than its 28th-ranked penalty kill.

We are riding the hottest goalie in the league and will take the Pens 3-way ML on Tuesday night.

INJURY UPDATE: F PATRICE BERGERON, BOSTON BRUINS

The best could get better this week as the No. 1 team in the East, the Boston Bruins, may get the services of their top center in Patrice Bergeron. The two-way pivot has been out since Nov 26 and could suit up Monday versus the Ottawa Senators or Wednesday against the Washington Capitals. The Bruins went 5-2 SU without the centerman but have dropped their last two games and now head out on a four-game road trip along the East coast.

Getting Bergeron back will help in shaping out all four lines and especially the team’s power play. The Bruins’ PP scored at 17 percent without Bergeron but was the best in the league at 32 percent with him on the ice. Look for the Bruins to top their team total of 3.5 on Monday and Wednesday if Bergeron does rejoin the team.

HAT TRICK TRENDS

• Through 14 home games, the Washington Capitals have been an Over machine going 11-2-1 O/U at Capital One Arena this year. On Monday, the Metropolitan’s best will entertain the Columbus Blue Jackets with the Over set at 6. The Caps are 8-2-1 O/U on totals of six and the Blue Jackets are 7-7-1 on totals of six.

• The L.A. Kings are surprisingly the only team in the league hitting first-period Overs at 80 percent in their last 10. The Kings will host the New York Rangers on Tuesday night. New York is 8-4 O/U on the road in first-period totals and is 6-4 O/U in its last 10.

• Away favorites went a cool 6-7 ATS last week which hasn’t happened often this year as away favorites are 34-76 (31%) over the course of the season. Away teams hit at over 57 percent in the last seven days going 26-19 which is almost bang on to their season mark of 56.59 percent. On Monday, the Boston Bruins are the only away favorite with their Puck Line (-1.5) at +135.

Unbeaten Aztecs to start hot, and the NCAA basketball best bets you need to make this weekend

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The San Diego State Aztecs will look to keep their perfect season going on Sunday, while Texas Tech and Kentucky tangle in a matchup between two Top-20 teams on Saturday night. Rohit Ponnaiya digs into the college basketball odds and brings you his favorite bets and predictions for the weekend.

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS

The game of the night Friday will take place in the Big East as Marquette tangles with Butler. After falling 76-61 to Villanova on Tuesday (which made us a bit of money), Butler has now lost three straight games after beginning the season with a 15-1 record. In Butler’s last three games they’ve allowed 112.3 points per 100 possessions and a large reason for that is that they’ve been sending opposing teams to the line. Over that three game span they’ve given foes an average of 26.7 free throw attempts per game.

That’s bad news against a Marquette squad that has scored at least 82 points in each of it’s last three games and is led by the leading scorer in the country in Markus Howard. Howard has averaged 35 points per game over his last five contests and has averaged 12.5 FTA over his last two. As a team the Golden Eagles know how to get to the line, attempting 23.6 free throws per game, 18th highest in the country. We like the Over 64.5 on Marquette’s team total. 

EVERYTHING IS BIGGER IN TEXAS

Two Top-20 teams face off in the Lone Star State on Saturday as the Kentucky Wildcats travel to Lubbock to face Texas Tech at 6:00 p.m ET. This matchup should get plenty of action with the Red Raiders coming off a Final Four finish while Kentucky is…well Kentucky.

Texas Tech is coming off a road loss against TCU but is 9-1 at home. Chris Beard’s Red Raiders are known for their defensive intensity and this year’s squad ranks 7th in the country in adjusted defensive efficiency according to the KenPom rating system. That said, Kentucky ranks 42nd in defensive efficiency and 32nd in offensive efficiency (while Texas Tech ranks 97th on offense).

Kentucky has three guards (Ashton Hagans, Immanuel Quickley and Tyrese Maxey) that love to apply pressure on opposing ball-handlers while also being able to create their own shot. With Nick Richards and EJ Montgomery, Calipari’s squad has a (pardon the pun) big edge in size and rebounding ability. And unlike past editions of the Wildcats, this team has plenty of veteran experience so don’t expect them to be rattled playing in hostile territory.

We’re expecting Texas Tech to have the chalk and backing UK as the likely underdog, but if public action makes the Wildcats the faves the value will be on the Red Raiders.

HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN DEVILS

It’s the battle of Arizona on Saturday night as the Arizona State Sun Devils host the Arizona Wildcats. These teams met up on January 4, with the Wildcats routing ASU by a score of 75-47. But don’t expect to see a repeat of that score with the Sun Devils now enjoying home-court advantage.

The Wildcats led by guard Nico Mannion and big man Zeke Nnaji are 13-5 but they have been very beatable when playing outside of Tucson. They’re 9-2 ATS at home but just 1-6 ATS on the road and at neutral sites. They have an average scoring margin of plus-26.6 ppg at home but that falls to minus-1 ppg away from home.

The Sun Devils also play way better in front of their home crowd, outscoring opponents by a margin of plus-15.7 ppg in Tempe, compared to minus-7.2 ppg when they have to travel. Take the home side to cover as underdogs.

THE LAST OF THE UNBEATENS

The last unbeaten team in the country are the No. 4 San Diego Aztecs who head to Vegas to take on the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels on Sunday. The Aztecs have an aggressive defense and have been holding opponents to just 56.7 ppg on 36.7 percent shooting. But SDSU has been effective on the offensive end of the floor as well, ranking 14th in the country in offensive efficiency.

UNLV has been solid, winning seven of the their last nine games and going 6-3 ATS, but they might be out of their depth here. Their two losses during that span were by 14 points against Nevada and seven points against Boise State. The Aztecs beat Nevada by 13 points and clobbered BSU by 18 after leading by 23 points at halftime.

UNLV has been sloppy with the ball turning the ball over 14.6 times per game, second-worst among all Mountain West teams. SDSU has just 11.1 turnovers per game on offense while their pesky defense forces 15.2 TO per game. The full game spread might be a bit too rich for our blood but with the Aztecs fifth in the nation with an average first-half scoring margin of plus-9.2 ppg, look for them to cover the 1H spread. 

MID-MAJOR TO WATCH: DAYTON (17-2 SU, 11-8 ATS, 13-6 O/U)

Dayton is flying up the rankings currently sitting at No. 7. Their 17-2 record is even more impressive when you consider that both defeats were in overtime to quality opponents, falling 90-84 to Kansas and 78-76 to Colorado.

Led by forward Obi Toppin (19.5 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 62.3 percent shooting) the Flyers are first in the country in field goal percentage at 52.5 percent and rank third in scoring with 83 ppg. On Saturday they take on the Richmond Spiders who can also fill up the basket converting at a clip of 47.5 percent from the field, including a sizzling 57.6 percent from the floor over their last three games. The Over is worth looking at.

NATIONAL TITLE ODDS

Gonzaga isn’t a program to sleep on anymore, currently sitting at No. 1 in the polls and with the best odds to win the National Championship at +1000. The Zags have the top rated offense in the nation, putting up 88.8 ppg on 50.6 percent shooting and those numbers jump up to 93.5 ppg and 52.5 percent at home.

On Saturday, Gonzaga hosts Pacific and will probably be favored by more than 20 points. Gonzaga is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings at home between the two teams dating back to 2016, and the average score of those games was 80-52 in favor of Gonzaga.

If you want to look at a team that’s tumbled down the odds board look no further than the Memphis Tigers who came into the season at +1300 after a terrific recruiting class. After top freshman James Wiseman was suspended and then chose to leave the school, Memphis has looked ugly, coming off a 80-40 smackdown at the hands of Tulsa on Wednesday night. The Tigers currently sit at +6000 odds and even that might be generous. Memphis will try to get back on track on Saturday as they host SMU.

BETTING TRENDS

• By holding Memphis to just 40 points, Tulsa managed to cash the Under for the sixth game in a row. The Golden Hurricanes are 15-4 to the Under and will take on UConn on Sunday. Thanks to a defense that ranks inside the Top-50 teams in the country in opponent FG percentage and an offense that ranks outside the Top-250 in FG percentage, the Huskies have also been a great Under bet, going below the total in 12 of their last 16 contests.

• Virginia has been awful on offense, terrific on defense and plays at the slowest pace in Div 1. But oddsmakers might set the total for their Sunday matchup on the road against Wake Forest a tad too low. The Demon Deacons have gone 8-0-1 to the Over in their last nine games and are 7-1 O/U at home this season.

• Austin Peay is 7-0 ATS in their last seven games overall and is a perfect 6-0 ATS at home this season. On Saturday, the Governors will host the Belmont Bruins in a Ohio Valley Conference matchup. The Bruins are coming off a 10-point loss on the road against Murray State and have failed to cover in their last two away contests.

NHL Midseason betting review: Stanley Cup futures odds and best bets

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With the NHL heading into the All-Star break we take a look the updated futures odds to win the Stanley Cup as well as the best and worst teams to wager on in terms of Moneyline, Puckline and Over/Under bets.

Despite Washington leading the way for the Presidents’ Trophy this season, Tampa Bay still has the best odds to win the Stanley Cup. The Lightning are followed by the Boston Bruins and the defending Stanley Cup champions the St. Louis Blues.

On the other hand, the Toronto Maple Leafs have fallen outside the Top-5 and now sit at +2000, while the San Jose Sharks have plummeted from a Stanley Cup contender to a +8000 long shot.

Here are every teams’ odds to win the Stanley Cup, courtesy of the Superbook at Westgate:

Teams Odds to win Stanley Cup (as of Jan 23)
Tampa Bay Lightning +600
Boston Bruins +800
St. Louis Blues +800
Washington Capitals +1,000
Colorado Avalanche +1,000
Vegas Golden Knights +1,000
Pittsburgh Penguins +1,200
Dallas Stars +1,200
Arizona Coyotes +1,600
Florida Panthers +2,000
Toronto Maple Leafs +2,000
Vancouver Canucks +2,000
Edmonton Oilers +2,500
Calgary Flames +2,500
New York Islanders +4,000
Carolina Hurricanes +4,000
Nashville Predators +4,000
Columbus Blue Jackets +4,000
Philadelphia Flyers +5,000
Winnpeg Jets +5,000
Minnesota Wild +6,000
San Jose Sharks +8,000
Montreal Canadiens +10,000
New York Rangers +10,000
Buffalo Sabres +10,000
Chicago Blackhawks +10,000
Los Angelas Kings +50,000
Anahiem Ducks +100,000
Ottawa Senators +200,000
New Jersey Devils +200,000
Detroit Red Wings +1,000,000

The Capitals don’t just have the best record in the league, they’ve also been the best Over bet as well as the top team to back on the moneyline returning a profit of +9.35 units for bettors this season.

Thanks to rookie goalie Elvis Merzlikins and a group of forwards that can’t find the back of the net, the Columbus Blue Jackets have been the NHL’s best Under bet. The top team to back on the puckline as a favorite has been the surprising Vancouver Canucks who lead the Pacific Division.

While the Golden Knights were sweating sportsbooks when they made their Cinderella run to the Stanley Cup Finals two years ago, oddsmakers have made some of that money back this season as the Knights have been the second-worst money team in the league. The Knights are still way ahead of Detroit who has cost bettors dearly with a loss of almost 20 units.

BEST OVER BETS

Teams Over/Under
Washington Capitals 31-18
Florida Panthers 30-17
Nashville Predators 28-17
Toronto Maple Leafs 28-18
Tampa Bay Lightning 27-20

BEST UNDER BETS

Teams Over/Under
Colombus Blue Jackets 18-32
Dallas Stars 16-29
Carolina Hurricanes 21-29
San Jose Sharks 21-28
Calgary Flames 20-27

BEST MONEY BETS

Teams Total Money Won (based on 100$ bets)
Washington Capitals $935
New York Islanders $700
Colombus Blue Jackets $605
Pittsburgh Penguins $596
New York Rangers $567

WORST MONEY BETS

Teams Total Money Won (based on 100$ bets)
Detroit Red Wings $-1992
Las Vegas Golden Knights $-1010
Los Angelas Kings $-916
San Jose Sharks $-895
Toronto Maple Leafs $-829

BEST PUCKLINE TEAMS AT -1.5 

Teams Total Money Won as Puckline Favorite (PL record as favorite)
Vancouver Canucks $840 (11-12)
Colorado Avalanche $771 (14-14)
Chicago Blackhawks $480 (7-8)
Florida Panthers $410 (13-17)
New York Rangers $375 (5-5)