Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 1:45 PM EST.
9:05 PM EST. OT included. Calgary is having a great year and some even suggest that it is a serious threat to win the Cup. Calgary missed the playoffs last year with virtually the same team as they have this year. How can a team go from that to this? It’s not maturity and it’s not coaching. Last year, Calgary’s goaltenders consisted of Mike Smith, Eddie Lack, Jon Gillies and a little bit of David Rittich. This year, the Flames are one of the top teams in the league because Rittich has emerged as the great goaltender the Flames hoped he would be. It really is that simple, thus when David Rittich is not in goal, the Flames are in danger of losing. Why isn’t Rittich in goal here? You see, the Flames will play tomorrow night in Edmonton on CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada’s late game. Edmonton/Calgary is to that region what Toronto/Montreal is to the East. It’s one of hockey’s bitter and great rivalries so Calgary is saving Rittich for tomorrow, thus valuing that game much more than this one. Aside from that, Detroit is another grossly undervalued squad that is very capable of beating anyone, whether that team is focused or not.
The Red Wings are perceived as a weak in this market because they are near the bottom of the standings but weak they are not. The Red Wings “puck luck” has been awful this year otherwise they would be contending for a playoff spot. Detroit has been the better team in four straight against Anaheim, Minnesota, Winnipeg and Montreal. They picked up two wins over that span. In a stretch in December, Detroit scored in overtime to defeat the Maple Leafs two nights after it had banked one point against Tampa Bay, and five nights after the Wings had beaten Boston. Six of the Red Wings last eight losses were by one goal (excluding two empty netters). Detroit is loaded with both speed and talent. They can roll out three scoring lines and they have balance. The least talked about great line in the game is the Gustav Nyquist (40 pts in 48 GP), Dylan Larkin (45 pts in 48 GP), and Tyler Bertuzzi line. Bertuzzi recently found a home on the top line. He managed a hat trick over the weekend and currently has a career-high 25 points in 46 games. Together, they’ve been an excellent line for the Red Wings. That’s not hyperbole, either: In five-on-five, adjusted for score, that trio is enjoying a 62.7 percent shot share. They aren’t wasting shots, either, as their high-danger shot share is over 58 percent. The Red Wings also getting very good goaltending from Jimmy Howard. Win or lose, the price here makes this a great value bet with a great chance to cash it.
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Detroit +215 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 4.30)