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2015 NHL Betting – Picks For Thursday, February 12

Posted by Don Melrose on 2/11/2015 8:20:40 PM

The National Hockey League regular season is two-thirds of the way toward its completion. The races for playoff spots are heating up. What selections are good for this Thursday?

Game 1: Toronto Maple Leafs @ New York Islanders Thursday, February 12

There are a number of stories worth keeping an eye on in the NHL right now, and one of them involves the New York Islanders, a team that is within striking distance of the top overall seed in the Eastern Conference but does not have games in hand against all of its competitors. The Islanders are tied with Detroit for third place in the East with 71 points, but they’ve played 54 games compared to 52 for the Red Wings. They are actually in a good position relative to the top team, Tampa Bay – the Lightning have 74 points but have played 56 games. That’s one race in which the Islanders do have games in hand. However, second-place Montreal (73 points) has played only 53, so the Habs have a game in hand over the Isles.

If New York is going to get the top seed in the East, games such as this one are essential. Toronto is 1-8-1 in its last 10 games. The team has spiraled downward since firing coach Randy Carlyle. Take the Islanders at home in this game.

NHL Betting Pick: New York Islanders

Game 2: Edmonton Oilers @ Montreal Canadiens Thursday, February 12

This might seem like an obvious call, but before you fully commit to it, do realize that the Edmonton Oilers – a bad team in general – have not really been that bad over the past two weeks. This team is 5-5 in its last 10 games and has been finding ways to win that just didn’t emerge at previous points in the season. The Oilers are going through one of their best stretches this season; playing not to lose has given them a freedom that was not in evidence during their miserable start and all the internal organizational turmoil that created.

Nevertheless, the Oilers are running into a hot team. Montreal is 8-2 in its last 10 games and recently defeated the Boston Bruins, which is always a pick-me-up for the Habs. It’s very hard to expect Edmonton to win in Montreal. Go with the Habs, as you should.

NHL Betting Pick: Montreal

Game 3: St. Louis Blues @ Tampa Bay Lightning Thursday, February 12

The final game on this slate is one in which the attention of the NHL is going to be noticeable. This is the featured game on the Thursday slate, because it matches two 74-point teams near the top of their conferences. St. Louis has been a little better in its last 10 – 8-2 compared to 6-2-2 for Tampa Bay – but the Lightning have an exceptionally good 22-5-1 home-ice record. They are 12-11-5 on the road. Playing this game at home is a big advantage for the Lightning. They know that since they don’t have games in hand relative to the other contenders in the East, it’s important for them to maximize their results at home. Take Tampa Bay here.

NHL Betting Pick: Tampa Bay

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