Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 12:30 PM EST.
8:05 PM EST. Regulation only. Do we like Minnesota overall? No, but we like their determination and grit and we also like that they would take a bullet in the head for their coach. No matter where Bruce Boudreau has coached over the years, his players love him and they go to war for him. The Wild have also dug down a little deeper since they learned that Mikko Koivu would be lost for the season. Since that announcement, the Wild are 1-2 but were clearly the superior team in two of those games. Minnesota has also lost five of six but deserving losses they were not. Right now, the Wild are a playoff bubble team and it looks like they’ll be fighting for their playoff lives the rest of the way. Very winnable games like these do not come along often in this league so we’re going to trust this Boudreau-coached squad to recognize this opportunity and emerge victorious.
Philadelphia played Pittsburgh last night and lost 4-1 with their new “star goaltender”, Corey Hart in goal. That was an important game for both squads that was played with high intensity. The Flyers will now be asked to travel to frigid Minnesota, not a short trip by any stretch, to play a road game against a Western Conference team that they rarely see. After this game, the Flyers will come right back home to play Detroit and subsequently will play Detroit again, Tampa, Montreal, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Columbus and a bunch more Eastern Conference teams (nine more to be exact). Although every game is vital from here on in for every playoff hopeful, including the Flyers, it is unreasonable to expect them to bring it every night. There will be difficult scheduling spots and unfavorable situations and that is precisely what this is for the Flyers. Aside from that, they're not very good to begin with.
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MINNESOTA -½ +104 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.08)