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NHL Who’s Hot, Who’s Not: Matthews Boosts Hart Trophy Odds

While the New York Rangers are on a nine-game winning streak, the other three division leaders are trending in the wrong direction. The Dallas Stars and Vancouver have dropped four games in a row and the Boston Bruins are now in a fight to stay ahead of Florida in the Atlantic Division standings.

It is interesting that while the Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers have the best NHL odds to win the Stanley Cup, neither are in first place in their respective divisions.

NHL Who’s Hot, Who’s Not: Matthews Boosts Hart Trophy Odds
Auston Matthews #34 of the Toronto Maple Leafs | Chris Tanouye/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images/AFP

When looking at the NHL news, Vegas forward Mark Stone and Boston defenseman Hampus Lindholm are among the prominent players recently sidelined.

With Auston Matthews at 52 goals and counting, it is not a surprise that the Toronto forward headlines the weekly “Who’s Hot” list while a pair of players from an Arizona team that has lost 11 games in a row are on the “Who’s Not” list.

When looking at the NHL odds and predictions, the Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers are priced at +850 in the odds of winning the Stanley Cup followed by the Boston Bruins and the Florida Panthers at +900.

Keep reading for information on the hottest forwards, defensemen and goalies, as well as players recently struggling, to help with your NHL spread picks.


Who’s Hot



1. Kirill Kaprizov, Minnesota Wild: Kaprizov has points in his last six games. After having three goals and three assists in a win over Vancouver, he had a goal and an assist in a loss to Winnipeg.

2. Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs: Matthews has goals in five straight games for the red-hot Maple Leafs. He has 10 goals to push his season total to 52 and added three assists as Toronto has posted four consecutive multi-goal wins. He is +200 in the odds to win the Hart Trophy.

3. Gabriel Vilardi, Winnipeg Jets: After going six games without a point, Vilardi recorded three straight multi-point efforts with four goals (two of them game-winners) and four assists.


1. Evan Bouchard, Edmonton Oilers: Bouchard has two goals and seven assists in his last five games. He also has a defensive rating of +6 in those games. He is +21 as Edmonton is 19-3-1 over the last 23 games.

2. Adam Fox, New York Rangers: Despite being held scoreless in Thursday’s win over New Jersey, Fox has a goal, six assists and a plus/minus rating of +6 over the last four games for the Metropolitan Division-leading Rangers.

3. Timothy Liljegren, Toronto Maple Leafs: Liljegren has three multi-point games over the last five games and his seven points nearly matched his scoring output from his first 32 games of the season.


1. Sergei Bobrovsky, Florida Panthers: Bobrovsky is 5-1 with a save percentage of .948 and a 1.50 goals-against average in his last five games to make it on this list for the second consecutive week. The Panthers are making a push for the No. 1 spot in the Eastern Conference.

2. Pyotr Kochetkov, Carolina Hurricanes: Kochetkov is 4-1 with a goals-against average of 1.28 over his last five games as he has stopped 143 of the last 149 shots he has faced.

3. Igor Shesterkin, New York Rangers: Shesterkin is 5-0-0 with a 2.01 goals-against average since the end of the NHL All-Star break. He has faced at least 40 shots on goal in each of his last three games and has stopped 80 of 82 shots in his last two appearances.


Who’s Not



1. Jeff Carter, Pittsburgh Penguins: Carter, an 11-time 20-goal scorer, has gone seven games in a row without a goal or an assist with the Penguins winning just two of those contests.

2. Lawson Crouse, Arizona Coyotes: Crouse has just one goal over his last eight games. The 20-goal scorer has a -7 plus/minus rating during Arizona’s 11-game losing streak.

3. Michael Rasmussen, Detroit Red Wings: Rasmussen has no goals and no assists over his last five games. He has nearly as many penalty minutes as shots on goal during that span.


1. Brock Faber, Minnesota Wild: Among the front-runners when it comes to the NHL betting lines for the Calder Trophy, Faber has no goals and no assists with a plus/minus rating of -5 over the last three games.

2. Seth Jones, Chicago Blackhawks: Jones has no goals and one assist over his last nine games. He is also -5 in those games. He has a -7 defensive rating as the Blackhawks are 1-9-1 over the last 11 contests.

3. Cale Makar, Colorado Avalanche: Makar has no goals and no assists over his last seven games after not going more than three games without a point heading into his recent offensive slump. He is also -6 over those seven games as he makes this list for the second week in a row.


1. John Gibson, Anaheim Ducks: Despite going 2-1 over his last five games, Gibson has a 4.30 goals-against average and a save percentage of .875 during that stretch.

2. Connor Ingram, Arizona Coyotes: Ingram is 0-4-1 over his last five games with games with five and six goals allowed during that stretch.

3. Elvis Merzlikins, Columbus Blue Jackets: Merzlikins is 1-2 with a 4.30 goals-against average in February as he has allowed 13 goals in 104 shots.



Questions Of The Day

Who is the leading scorer in the NHL right now?

Nikita Kucherov’s 95 points are the most in the NHL while Toronto’s Auston Matthews leads the league with 52 goals.

Which team has the best record against the spread this season?

The Philadelphia Flyers are 36-20 against the Las Vegas odds followed by the Montreal Canadiens at 35-22 and the Vancouver Canucks at 35-24.

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