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NHL Picks – Rundown For Wednesday, April 21st

Posted by Don Melrose on 4/20/2010 2:30:43 PM
NHL Odds:

Buffalo Sabres @ Boston Bruins

The Bruins could be in line for an online betting upset in this series as they should be favored at home in Game 4 after a 2-1 win, and for the second straight game, Boston’s Tuukka Rask outplayed Buffalo counterpart Ryan Miller by stopping 32 shots for the Bruins. It doesn’t help the Sabres’ offense that Thomas Vanek and Drew Stafford have been hurt, although Stafford is back in the lineup after a concussion. The Sabres need to generate some offense to take the pressure off of Miller, who has carried them this far. The Bruins are no offensive juggernaut, but right now, the attack is clicking. Still, somehow, we’re expecting Miller to have his best game of the series so far, and the Sabres will do just enough to even it up.

Pick: Buffalo

Washington Capitals @ Montreal Canadiens

The Capitals may be the road NHL betting favorites after their 5-1 dismantling of the Canadiens in Game 3, using a four-goal second period to flex their muscles. Brooks Laich and Eric Fehr had a goal and an assist as the Capitals outshot the Canadiens 36-27, and they chased goalie Jaroslav Halak, which now raises questions about who will start for Les Habitants in Game 4: will it be Halak, or Carey Price? The Capitals had their own controversy prior to Game 3, but after Semyon Varlamov’s 26-save performance, it looks like he’ll get the nod on Wednesday. Last year, Varlamov made his name after replacing Jose Theodore, and took the Capitals to the second round. The Canadiens came out with fire in the first, but then Washington’s talent and desire took over. It should be much of the same in Game 4, especially as Alex Ovchekin is starting to warm up.

Pick: Washington

Vancouver Canucks @ Los Angeles Kings

The Kings will be the sports betting favorites in this contest after their 5-3 win at home in Game 3, the first playoff game played in the Staples Center in eight years. Michael Handzus notched a pair of goals and added an assist for the Kings, who managed to chase Roberto Luongo from the Vancouver goal, and the Canucks are killing themselves with penalties. The Kings were 3-of-3 on the power play in Game 3, and they now have scored seven times with the man advantage in this series. The point duo of Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson combined for seven points (one goal, six assists) in Game 3 and did most of their damage on the power play. Luongo has to bounce back from yet another shaky performance in Los Angeles; he has now given up 12 goals in less than two full games at the Staples Center. He won’t be as bad on Wednesday night, but the Kings seem to have his number, and they’ll push the Canucks’ backs against the wall in a sportsbook victory.

Pick: Los Angeles

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