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NHL Picks – Rundown For Tuesday, April 20th

Posted by Don Melrose on 4/19/2010 2:03:13 PM
NHL Odds
Phoenix Coyotes at Detroit Red Wings

The Red Wings should be the online betting favorites in this contest despite losing Game 3 by a score of 4-2, but rookie goalie Jimmy Howard needs to be better between the pipes as he has a 3.72 GAA through the first three games of the series. The Coyotes may be going into this game without captain Shane Doan, who has an upper-body injury. Phoenix may miss his physical presence in the lineup against an experienced Detroit team that will get after it from the opening whistle.

Pick: Detroit

Pittsburgh Penguins @ Ottawa Senators

The Penguins took Game 3 4-2 on Sunday thanks to goals from Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, and Pittsburgh is tough to stop when their best players are playing at the top of their game. The Senators notched both of their goals on the power play in what was a feisty game, so the Penguins have to stay out of the sin bin. Daniel Alfredsson and Jason Spezza have three assists each in the series, but neither has scored, and they’re going to have to light the lamp if the Senators are going to avoid a 3-1 hole.

Pick: Pittsburgh

New Jersey Devils @ Philadelphia Flyers

Daniel Carcillo’s overtime winner gave the Flyers a 3-2 win over the Devils and a 2-1 lead heading into Game 4, where they should be the NHL betting favorites, and goalie Brian Boucher has outplayed New Jersey counterpart Martin Brodeur so far in this series, although the future Hall of Famer kept the Devils in Game 3 as they were outshot 34-19. The Devils have now lost five in a row in Philadelphia, and a loss in Game 3 puts them behind the eight-ball, so you can expect some urgency.

Pick: New Jersey

Chicago Blackhawks @ Nashville Predators

The Blackhawks tied the series at one with a 2-0 shutout in Game 2, and Antti Niemi stopped all 23 shots he faced. This is the type of goaltending that Chicago needs if they want to show why they are the sportsbook favorites in the Western Conference, and they looked much more relaxed in Game 2, particularly on defense. The Predators were scoreless on all five of their power plays, and are now 0-for-7 in the series. The Blackhawks have won three of their last four in Nashville, and unless the Predators can pick up their play with the man advantage, we’re taking Chicago on the road in our sportsbook.

Pick: Chicago

San Jose Sharks @ Colorado Avalanche

Sunday’s 1-0 overtime loss in Game 3 was a perfect example of why the Sharks are considered perennial underachievers: Dan Boyle tried to clear the puck around the glass, but it hit the stick of Avalanche rookie Ryan O’Reilly and got past Sharks goalie Evgeni Nabokov to steal a win for Colorado, who got a sparkling 51-save performance from Craig Anderson. The big line of Joe Thornton, Dany Heatley and Patrick Marleau has yet to score a goal for the Sharks, and Heatley missed the last game with a shoulder injury. The Sharks’ best players need to put the team on their back, but given their history, I wouldn’t place a sports betting wager on it.

Pick: Colorado

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