The start of March Madness points to the home stretch of the NHL regular season and for hockey fans I have a trio of NHL picks you can cash in on this week.
NHL Picks March 18-24
Tampa Bay Lightning at Washington Capitals
When: Wednesday, March 20 at 7:30 pm ET
Where: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
Analysis: The Tampa Bay Lightning battle defending Stanley Cup Champion Washington in what’s sure to be a slugfest on Wednesday. The Lightning have 114 points heading into the week and are clearly the best team in NHL.
Washington’s overtaken the New York Islanders in the Metropolitan Division, though. The Caps are 21-9-4-1 at home and head into the week having won 8-of-10. But, there are a few things that leads me to back Tampa.
The Lightning dominated Washington 6-3 in the last match. Not only that, Tampa is 25-7-2-0 in away games, have won 4 in a row and 6 out of 8, and only must face Arizona before the battle with Washington. The Lightning should win.
Pick: Tampa Bay Lightning
Winnipeg Jets at Vegas Golden Knights
When: Thursday, March 21 at 10:00 pm ET
Where: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, NV
Analysis: Vegas battles Central Division-leading Winnipeg on Thursday. If the Golden Knights are as hot this week as they were last week, forget it. They’ll beat Winnipeg by at least 2 goals.
However, that could be asking a lot. The Knights have gone 4-1 on the moneyline in their last 5 games. Although that means they’ll have a shot to win on March 21, they must battle 3 teams this week that they lost to in the last head-to-head matchups: Edmonton, San Jose, and Winnipeg.
Vegas is streaky. They could end up losing all 3 games. They most definitely should drop their battle against Winnipeg on Thursday.
Pick: Winnipeg Jets
Nashville Predators at Winnipeg Jets
When: Saturday, March 23 at 7:00 pm ET
Where: Bell MTS Place, Winnipeg, MB, CA
Analysis: This might be the most important battle of the week. As of March 17, Nashville is a point behind Winnipeg in the Central Division. The Predators carry a 2-game win streak into March 18, but, man, the week is brutal.
Nashville faces Toronto and Pittsburgh before their Saturday match with Winnipeg. The Jets beat the Preds 5-3 in the last meeting while Nashville is only 19-14-3-1 on the road. Winnipeg should take this.
Pick: Winnipeg Jets