Free Picks: Edmonton Oilers vs. Montreal Canadiens

Oilers vs Canadiens NHL
Edmonton Oilers vs. Montreal Canadiens, NHL, Rogers Place

Edmonton and Montreal seem to be going in different directions. The Oilers are 6-2-2 in their last 10 and are riding a two-game winning streak. The Canadiens are only 3-7-0 in their last 10 and have lost two straight. They are having trouble scoring goals and goaltender Carey Price was injured in the second period on Monday after stopping the first seven shots he faced. Is Edmonton the best bet on the Money Line?

Canadiens lead the series 4-2

The best sports bet today is Edmonton on the Puck Line and Money Line.

From the recent play of Montreal, it’s hard to believe they lead the season series 4-2. Montreal’s goal-scoring has dried up recently and now goaltender Carey Price is injured, leaving the net duties to Jake Allen.

Only one game between these two teams has featured a spread of fewer than two goals, so for my Free Picks, I’m taking Edmonton (+176) to cover (-1.5) on the Puck Line for the biggest payout on 10Bet. I’m going to pass on the Total goals since it is rather high at 6, but I will take Edmonton (-130) on the Money Line for a safer bet.

In order to beat Montreal, the Oilers have to play a tight-checking game. In their two victories over Montreal this season, the Oilers won 3-0 and 4-1. In their four wins over Edmonton, the Canadiens have scored 15 goals, or almost four goals a game.

Over their last 10 games, Montreal has scored only 18 goals but allowed 35. And they are allowing as many shots on goal as they are taking. In their last six games, Montreal has failed to get more than 30 shots on goal.

Many of Montreal’s troubles have come about as a result of an injury to forward Brendan Gallagher, who went on long-term injury reserve April 5 with a thumb injury. For Edmonton, forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is day-to-day with an undisclosed injury.

While Connor McDavid is Edmonton’s biggest threat to score, Montreal has an elite scorer in Tyler Toffoli. But he’s the only one on the team with more than 20 goals. The next closest is Josh Anderson with 15. And Toffoli has yet to score against Edmonton this season.

Jake Allen is the projected goaltender for Montreal on Wednesday. Mike Smith will likely start for Edmonton. Allen is 7-8-4 with a 2.52 goals-against average and a .914 save percentage with one shutout. Smith has a 16-4-2 record, a 2.30 GAA and a .923 save percentage with three shutouts.

The NHL odds favor Edmonton and that’s why I’m staying with the favorite. Prediction: Edmonton 4, Montreal 2.

Stats

  • The total has gone Under in 5 of Montreal’s last 6 games.
  • Montreal is 2-6 SU in their last 8 games.
  • Edmonton has gone 4-1 SU in their last 5 games.
  • Edmontonl is 23-21 ATS this season.

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I live in the land of ice and snow in Toronto, Canada's largest city. I can't skate very well, but I know sports, especially hockey, after a long career writing about the Toronto Maple Leafs and other teams at the country's largest newspaper, the Toronto Star. Betting on sports can be a rewarding experience when you understand the trends and underlying characteristics of the teams and players before laying down a bet. That's how I hope to point you in the right direction. Follow me on Twitter

All Reviews by Curtis Rush

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