St Louis Blues
Generated from 52 Previous Games
2.43 = 5.38
Pick: St. Louis Blues -125
Tonight’s contest between the Blues and the Yotes is the kind of matchup where the rubber meets the road.
Sports bettors, sports handicappers and line-setters have this as a toss up.
Based on last year’s final results, handicappers and sports fans would have the Blues as an obvious favourite. Thinking about it in this kind of historical light would make the Blues a “steal” and it’s likely the reason that we see them captivate nearly 83% of the bets on this game.
Sports bettors are always wary of the public bets due to the statistical studies that prove that the majority public is losing money over time. However with that said, there are a few keys here that give us reason to think that the Blues have some legitimate chances.
Reason 1: Nashville is 6th in the league in terms of converting power plays. They are marking a competent 27.3% PP percentage and that really ain’t too shabby. Of their 12 goals scored so far this season, 3 have been on the power-play unit. On the other side of things, Arizona is 1 of 5 teams that have never suffered a goal on the penalty-kill. While these numbers are very strong in terms of Arizona, they also play directly into the Blues’ wheelhouse.
Let’s look at it.
The Blues have converted only 2 of their 14 opportunities on the power-play. Yes, this is fairly poor, but it also means that the majority of the Blues’ goal scoring comes from 5 on 5 hockey. So as far as Arizona’s elite penalty-killing, the Blues don’t really care because they do their scoring 5 on 5 anyway.
The Blues are solid on their penalty-kill as well. Allowing only 1 PK goal against, the Blues sit in with the best penalty killers in the league. Likewise, this silences the Yotes’ capacity to capitalize on their power-plays as well.
Bottom line? As far as the penalty scoring/killing goes, the Blues’ strengths neatly cancel out the Yotes’ strengths.
Reason 2: Netminder Jake Allen is confirmed to start for the Blues tonight. Allen has 2 games vs Arizona under his belt marking a more than respectable .944 SV%, including a shut out in his last outing vs the Yotes. This is Allen’s first start this season and he’ll be looking to make a mark.
Allen has yet to prove himself this season and sat out all of the 2013-2014 season as he was used on a 2-way contract where he spent his ’14 season playing for the Chicago Wolves in the AHL. That said, with the Blues allowing only 2 goals against in their last 2 games, it’s due in large part to the defensive competency of the Blues’ defensive line. This will afford Allen every opportunity to impress and keep the score low.
In net for Arizona is rumoured to be Mike Smith but this is unconfirmed. Smith has been marking abysmal numbers in his first two performances vs the mediocre Winnipeg Jets and the less than mediocre Edmonton Oliers. Based on Smith’s .815 SV% so far this season, we think that Arizona might opt in Devan Dubnyk to stand in net, who’s tallied a respectable .923 SV% so far this season in his one outing vs the formidable LA Kings. Smith stands first on Arizona’s depth chart, but it remains to be seen how much longer that stands true with his current lack of performance.
The real point that should go noticed with the netminding matchup here, is that no matter whom they set in goal, the Coyotes are behind the 8-ball. If they go with Smith, they’re playing arguably the poorest performing goalie of the 2014-2015 season thus far, who also, incidentally, marks a historically inferior record of .892% across an established 11 games vs this Coyotes squad.
If the Yotes play Dubnyk, likewise, we’ve got Dubnyk marking an even more severely lackluster track record of .843 SV% vs the St. Louis Blues across 7 games.
The point in case here is plain and simple. The Blues squad knows how to score when it comes to the Arizona Coyotes.
Reason 3: The value! These teams are even enough where this doesn’t appear to be some kind of a trap line at all. It looks like the moneyline is set legitimately, and it looks like given the goalie matchups, that the Blues have every chance to win this.
We wouldn’t eyeball the STL Blues if the ML were any lighter, but it’s in the right ballpark to spell out a profit in the long term.
Reason 4: It’s always good to be on the right side of ATS Forecast and today it gives the Blues a +0.52 advantage across 52 games vs the Coyotes.
Reason 5: Last but not least has got to be St. Louis’ psychology after being blanked in their 1-0 loss vs the LA Kings. They played a hard game but didn’t get rewarded and so weighing on the minds of the St. Louis squad tonight will be this need for closure.
Tough to find value on tonight’s board, but this pick should be a good bet for sports gamblers who are interested in profit over a long term.
Good luck tonight out there, and as always, bet responsibly!