Even though it’s a busy Sunday in the NHL, there will be plenty of eyes on the Minnesota Wild-Dallas Stars game, partially because it’s a battle between teams next to each other in the Central Division and also because of how bad the Wild have been recently. Minnesota needs to stop the bleeding and rebound but it won’t be easy against the upstart Stars. That’s the headline game of the day but a lot of contenders are also in action.
Let’s preview each of Sunday’s eight games to help if you’re betting online:
Los Angeles Kings vs Buffalo Sabres
The Los Angeles Kings got back on track with a 4-3 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday behind Viktor Arvidsson’s hat trick and will look to make it two in a row against the Buffalo Sabres. Buffalo is coming off a pair of impressive wins over the Toronto Maple Leafs and Minnesota Wild, scoring five goals apiece against two contenders.
Los Angeles has won six of eight and has been really good on the road with a 16-7-5 record away from Crypto.com Arena. Meanwhile, the Sabres have been bad at home and — with a game against the Florida Panthers on Monday — might turn to backup goalie Dustin Tokarski in net to spell Craig Anderson.
With a possible Tokarski start and the Kings clicking lately, especially on offense, Los Angeles is a pretty sizable road favorite. Buffalo has been hot but the Sabres are really inconsistent, so you should consider the Kings on the puckline.
St. Louis Blues vs New Jersey Devils
Hoping to get at least one win on their tour around the New York Metropolitan area, the St. Louis Blues — fresh off a 2-1 loss to the New York Islanders on Sunday — visit the New Jersey Devils on Sunday. St. Louis has lost back-to-back games to the Islanders and New York Rangers after putting together a four-game winning streak.
St. Louis is a sizable road favorite on the BetUS sportsbook with Ville Husso likely getting the nod in goal. With how much probable starter Jon Gillies has struggled this year, the Blues on the puckline is an intriguing bet. However, the Devils have played much better since Jesper Brett and Dougie Hamilton returned from injury so it might be safer to take the Blues to win in regulation instead.
Dallas Stars vs Minnesota Wild
The last few weeks have been brutal for the Minnesota Wild, who have lost five of six and are suddenly on the edge of falling out of a playoff spot. Meanwhile, the Dallas Stars are just two points behind Minnesota and have won three straight.
Minnesota lost a 5-4 heartbreaker to the Sabres on Saturday, giving up three goals in a six-minute span in the third period to blow a 3-2 lead. It was another rough showing for Kaapo Kahkonen, who probably will take a seat for Cam Talbot in this one.
Talbot hasn’t been much better, though, yet the Wild are still favored. The recent trends wouldn’t indicate it but this is a good bounce-back spot for Minnesota which has been much better at home this year than on the road. Take the Wild to win straight-up.
Seattle Kraken vs Carolina Hurricanes
The day after the Seattle Kraken got beat up by the Washington Capitals in a 5-2 loss, Dave Hakstol’s team is back at it down in Raleigh against the Carolina Hurricanes, who snapped a short skid with a 3-2 overtime win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday.
Seattle is in another tailspin, having lost eight of nine. The Kraken will also likely go with Philipp Grubauer in goal and he has lost each of his last seven starts. Plus, Carolina will have Frederik Andersen back after Antti Raanta got the start against Pittsburgh.
There’s just a lot riding against the Kraken. The Hurricanes on the puckline is the smart play even though they’re heavily favored on the NHL betting lines and there isn’t much value. You could parlay that with the over, too.
Tampa Bay Lightning vs Chicago Blackhawks
The beat goes on for the Tampa Bay Lightning who have won six of their last seven games and have basically been on cruise control for the whole season. Their next potential victim is the Chicago Blackhawks, a team that could look a lot different after the upcoming trade deadline. Chicago has lost five of seven and has a rest disadvantage because they lost to the Philadelphia Flyers — in Philly — on Saturday.
Chicago will have starting goalie Marc-Andre Fleury back after Kevin Lankinen got the loss against the Flyers. Fleury hasn’t been incredible but the Blackhawks have been much better with him in net, so he at least gives Chicago a chance here.
The Lightning are big road favorites and are a decent bet on the puckline. But, if you’re scared off by that risk, a dart on the Blackhawks on the moneyline as a plus-value isn’t a terrible idea instead.
New York Rangers vs Winnipeg Jets
After two nice home wins, the New York Rangers head on the road to take on the Winnipeg Jets as Igor Shesterkin continues his quest for a Vezina Trophy. Shesterkin is coming off a great performance against the New Jersey Devils on Friday for another notch on his belt in what has been an incredible season. On the other hand, Winnipeg blew a late lead to the Dallas Stars in the Jets’ last game and they lost in overtime.
The Rangers are hard to beat when Shesterkin starts — he’s 27-6-3 on the year — but Winnipeg is actually a slight home favorite here, which is interesting. It is true that New York, statistically, isn’t a great team without factoring for Shesterkin’s dominance but that doesn’t matter if he’s between the pipes.
Igor Shesterkin so far in 2022:
•27 goals against total
•.950 save %
•Won 13 of ‘em
— Dimitri Filipovic (@DimFilipovic) March 5, 2022
So, go with the Rangers straight-up at close to even-money if you can get it. Winnipeg hasn’t been great at goal prevention which should help New York’s relatively lackluster offense. Consider the Jets’ team total under as well.
Ottawa Senators vs Vegas Golden Knights
This is the kind of game the Vegas Golden Knights need to win. They welcome an Ottawa Senators team that has dropped four straight and is coming off a wild 8-5 loss to the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday night.
Matt Murray gave up all eight of those goals so backup Anton Forsberg — who has actually been solid this season — will get the start for the Senators, whose problem over the past few weeks has been scoring goals. Vegas has righted the ship a little bit lately and the Golden Knights beat the Anaheim Ducks on Friday, but they need to keep stringing together good games because the consistency hasn’t been there.
With Robin Lehner in net, the Senators missing a few key pieces due to injury, and Ottawa having the rest disadvantage, Vegas is a massive home favorite and the Golden Knights on the puckline is the way to go.
San Jose Sharks vs Anaheim Ducks
The San Jose Sharks and Anaheim Ducks are both struggling right now so this matchup is well-timed for each squad. San Jose — currently down starting goalie James Reimer due to injury — has lost three of four and only has three wins since the middle of January. New backup Alex Stalock — just picked up from Edmonton — got blasted in an 8-0 loss to the Nashville Predators on Saturday, which sums up the current state of the Sharks.
Anaheim hasn’t been much better, but the Ducks at least will have either John Gibson or Alex Stalock available. Both of the Ducks’ goalies haven’t been great in their recent starts but, with the rest advantage and San Jose’s uncertain situation in net, Anaheim is a good bet to win in regulation as solid home favorites. The over is also definitely a play.