Predators vs. Oilers Odds
|Time||8:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The Nashville Predators will conclude their Alberta back-to-back with a trip to Edmonton on Wednesday night. Twenty-four hours after defeating the Flames in overtime, the Preds will now look to cool off another hot-starting Pacific team, the 9-1 Oilers.
So far, general manager Ken Holland’s offseason decisions seem to be panning out. Zach Hyman has eight points in eight games, his goaltenders, Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen, have been solid and his acquisitions on defense, Cody Ceci and Duncan Keith, have helped the team to the 11th-best goals against average in the early going.
All that said, I remain unconvinced that this team’s defense will continue to perform at this level, especially if it continues to surrender quality scoring chances. Edmonton currently ranks 20th in the NHL at preventing high-danger scoring chances and it has done so against a relatively easy schedule.
Mikko Koskinen is likely to start with Mike Smith still day-to-day with a leg injury. Koskinen has managed good results so far this year with a .933 save percentage, but I feel that I still feel he will trend closer to his dreadful stats from a season ago as the year wears on.
Thanks to Juuse Saros, the Predators were able to steal a win against the Calgary Flames on Tuesday night. Saros stood on his head throughout, most notably stopping four breakaways through the first two periods.
Defensive meltdowns are uncharacteristic of Nashville big picture, but the Predators will be in tough tomorrow since John Hynes will likely turn to his No. 2 goalie, Connor Ingram, instead of sticking with Saros on the second night of a back-to-back.
Overall, the Predators have skated to a 51.53% expected goals rate and once again look like they will be a competitive bunch. The Predators are getting elite play from Roman Josi, while Mikael Granlund and Ryan Johansen are looking like sneaky bounce-back candidates this season.
Ingram was impressive in a 5-2 win over Minnesota earlier this season, but he did skate to an unimpressive .899 SV% in the AHL last season.
Predators vs. Oilers Pick
Coming into the season I thought the Oilers defense and goaltending would cost them points. So far, that hasn’t been the case, but I still feel that their defensive numbers are destined to get worse as the season goes on.
The Oilers are still allowing 11.02 high danger chances against per hour this season, which ranks them 20th in the league. Mikko Koskinen owns a .933 save %, as well as 2.7 Goals Saved Above Expected (GSAx), but last season he skated to an .899 SV% and a -10.2 GSAx, so I have my doubts that he is as good as his current numbers suggest.
While I don’t think that Edmonton’s defense will hold up against Nashville, I am not confident that Nashville will shut down Connor McDavid and company, especially with Ingram in goal.
If I had to choose a side to back, I would go with Nashville (particularly if they get close to +170), but I feel the best way to play this game is to take the Over 6 at -115 or better.
Pick: Over 6 (-115 or better)
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