This game is the first of a back-to-back set in Dallas. These teams are closer than Carolina’s 5-1 series lead would suggest. In fact, I think this game is a toss-up. Carolina leads the head-to-head matchups, but four of the six games have been decided by only one goal. The last two clashes have been tight, with Dallas winning 3-2 and Carolina taking the last match 1-0 on April 4.
Free Picks: Dallas Stars vs. Carolina Hurricanes
Carolina and Dallas almost too close to call
For my BetPicks free picks, I am going to stay away from the Puck Line. Carolina is a -1.5 favorite, but I don’t see them winning by more than two goals, so it’s a risky bet for the best payout (+205) among the main markets. The Puck Line for Dallas (-271) is too expensive at almost three times the potential payout, so I’m passing there too.
When I’m making my NHL picks, I examine the home and away records because sometimes it tilts the balance. But you can’t even give Dallas the edge as the home team because their record at home (12-6-8), percentage-wise (.615) is not as good as Carolina’s road record (15.-7-2) at .667.
Carolina is coming off a 4-3 overtime loss to Florida, the team they are battling for first place in the Central Division. Dallas is in fifth place and hungry to jump into the fourth and final playoff spot ahead of Nashville. The Stars are coming off a 2-1 win over Detroit on Saturday in which they fired a season-high 52 shots at the Detroit goal.
Carolina could be tired as it closes out a six-game road trip with these back-to-back games against the Stars. The Canes are 6-1-3 in their last 10, but the Stars are even better at 7-1-2. One area that separates these teams is goal differential. Carolina has an impressive plus-39 goal differential. The Stars are at plus-13.
The goaltending edge goes to Carolina. Rookie sensation Alex Nedeljkovic has a .937 save percentage since April 1. For Dallas, projected starter Jake Oettinger has a .930 SV% over the same span, while Anton Khudobin (.923) is also having a great April.
These two teams excel at playing tight-checking hockey. But three of their games have gone over 5.5 goals, so go lightly if you want to take the Over. Just remember: They are not among the highest-scoring teams in the league.
- Carolina has gone 5-1 Straight Up in their last six games against Dallas.
- The Total has gone Under in five of Carolina’s last seven games.
- Dallas is 5-1 SU in its last six games.
- The Total has gone Under in nine of Dallas’ last 11 games when playing as the underdog.
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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.