The 2019-20 NHL season started last week, and here are this week’s must-watch and bet NHL games for the first FULL week of action.
NHL Top Games Oct 7 – 13
Monday, October 7
St. Louis Blues at Toronto Maple Leafs
It’s only been a week, but already this season’s Toronto Maple Leafs have proven to be much better than last season’s rendition. The key for Toronto is the defense. Right now, the Leafs rank eighth in goals against at 2 per. The offense continues to shine with 4.5 goals per. Leafs take this.
Tuesday, October 8
Winnipeg Jets at Pittsburgh Penguins
Although the Jets would be an obvious choice in most instances, Winnipeg has yet to prove that the changes they made during the offseason can lead to wins. What’s really concerning is how the Jets are allowing 5 goals per match after only 2 games. Sure, they can turn that defense around in a single week. It’s not worth it to expect them to turn it around against the Penguins, though.
Boston Bruins at Vegas Golden Knights
Tuesday’s top matchup could end up a Stanley Cup preview if Boston and Vegas play as well as so many expect them to. The Bruins rank first in NHL after a couple of contests in goals allowed. Yes, that will change. However, it’s a good enough reason to take Boston at what should be underdog odds on October 8.
Wednesday, October 9
Montreal Canadiens at Buffalo Sabres
What’s up with the Sabres? The offense has been sensational. It averages 5 goals per from 38.5 shots per. The defense, so far, only allows 24.5 shots per. Back the Sabres on the puck line in this matchup.
Thursday, October 10
Tampa Bay Lightning at Toronto Maple Leafs
Everyone expected Lightning-Leafs to be the Eastern Conference Finals last season. Not so. Both teams have a chance to make an early-season statement on Thursday, though. The Leafs have outplayed the Lightning after Week 1, but TB can turn it on at almost any time. Back them at what should be decent odds.
Washington Capitals at Nashville Predators
The Caps aren’t scoring at will while the Preds are. Nashville averages 4 goals per. However, the Sabretooths are also giving up 3.5 goals per. Back the Caps.
Calgary Flames at Dallas Stars
Dallas appears to have the same issues scoring goals this season than they had last season. The defense is tight, but the Stars are struggling with a 1.5 per goal average. Calgary can score, they average 3 per, and play defense, they allow 2.5 per. The Flames are another road squad this week with a big shot.
Friday, October 11
Anaheim Ducks at Columbus Blue Jackets
Columbus went all out last season to win the Stanley Cup. They mortgaged this season to try to win Lord Stanley’s hardware. So far, it’s shown with the Jackets averaging 1.5 goals and allowing 5 per. Anaheim wins by 2.
Saturday, October 12
Florida Panthers at New York Rangers
The Rangers have one of the top offenses in NHL. NYR averages 5 goals per. Their power-play percentage is 60%. They should have no trouble handling Florida on Saturday.
Arizona Coyotes at Colorado Avalanche
Arizona doesn’t have enough firepower to take down the Avalanche on the road on Saturday. Back Colorado on the puck line in this one.
Sunday, October 13
Pittsburgh Penguins at Winnipeg Jets
This is just like the Tuesday game, except it happens in Winnipeg instead of in Pittsburgh. The outcome should be the same, a Pens victory.
Calgary Flames at San Jose Sharks
Flames and Sharks should battle, along with Vegas, for the Pacific Division title. But only the Flames have performed well so far. San Jose is an awful 0-3 as of October 6. The Sharks will start winning games. Back them on Sunday even though they might enter the matchup without a victory.