The NHL has played more than a quarter of its 82-game regular-season schedule heading into the first week of December. The Boston Bruins have stood out as the most complete team in the league. The Washington Capitals are setting the early pace in the Metro Division while the defending NHL Champion St. Louis Blues remain at the top of the Central Division. The other division leader in the Western Conference is the Edmonton Oilers with a slim lead over the Arizona Coyotes in the Pacific.
The one thing that all five of these teams have in common are top playmakers on either end of the ice. Hockey is a team sport but sometimes a solid betting strategy could hinge on the play of a few individuals. This is especially true when a team has a hot goalie. They equate to the starting pitcher in baseball with the ability to dictate the outcome of a game by their play between the pipes.
The top scorers in the league add the thrill aspect to the game for their ability to find the back of the net when their team needs it the most. Here is a closer look at a few of the players worth betting on.
Two of the reasons why Boston is off to such a hot start are David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand. The two have combined to score 43 goals in 28 games. They are also the biggest reason why the Bruins are the third-highest scoring team in the NHL with 3.61 goals per game.
The second-highest scoring team in the league is Washington with 3.66 goals per game. This has always been a solid team on this side of the centerline for one main reason; Alex Ovechkin. He has remained one of the top goal scorers over the course of his illustrious NHL career and this season has been no different. Ovechkin is second on the list in goals with 20.
The Blues are a bit of an anomaly on this list with an average of 3.10 goals per game which is ranked 14th. Yet, their fast start can be somewhat attributed to Brayden Schenn and David Perron with a combined 35 goals scored.
Boasting two goal scorers in the Top 5, Edmonton owes much of its early success to Connor McDavid (19 goals) and Leon Draisaitl (18 goals). The Oilers are just below St. Louis in average goals scored at 3.07. It is safe to say that these two sharpshooters are carrying the offensive effort.
With a goals-against-average of 2.18 that is ranked first in the NHL, it is easy to see why Boston is a +700 favorite to win this season’s Stanley Cup. With veteran Tuukka Rask as the No. 1 goalie, this looks like a solid bet. He has a personal 2.04 GAA with a .933 save percentage that has him ranked in the Top 5 of each category.
Nobody is talking about Arizona’s ability to score goals with an average of 2.69 a game. However, bettors should know all about the Coyotes’ ability to prevent them with a team GAA of 2.31 that is ranked second behind the Bruins. Goalie Darcy Kuemper is a big reason for the success on defense with a 1.97 GAA and a save percentage of .936 that are both ranked first in the NHL.
A big part of the services that my marketing company, Blue Pointe Advisors, LLC offers is written content for sports betting websites. I have been working as a full-time sports betting writer for the past nine years following a previous career in the field of sales and marketing.
I consider myself extremely fortunate to be able to write about my true passion in life; the world of sports. I also enjoy concentrating the bulk of my pieces towards the betting angle in sports.
It is always a challenge to take past results and current form to try and correctly determine a future result. Sports brings out the unpredictability in what should be a fairly predictable outcome based on the stats, facts and recent trends in a particular matchup. The one thing that I have learned over the past decade or so is that when it comes to betting on sports there is no such thing as a lock.
The main objective with my writing style is to create insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player. While there are times when my predictions fall well short of the actual outcome, I still enjoy trying to come up with a logical explanation to support my views on every pick I make.
My love of sports started a long time ago when I was just a kid growing up just outside Philadelphia. While I was a big Phillies, Flyers and 76ers fan, my number one team was always the Eagles. My dad was a season ticket holder from 1961 to 2002 and I would honestly say that he missed less than a handful of games than more than a few dismal seasons.
I was fortunate enough to go to a number of Eagles’ games back in the day including the 1980 NFC Championship when Wilbert Montgomery ran roughshod over the bitter rival Dallas Cowboys to lead Philly to their first appearance in a Super Bowl. Flash forward 40 years later and am I still celebrating the thrilling victory over New England in Super Bowl LVII. I know that my dad was smiling down on that one.