Minnesota Wild vs Toronto Maple Leafs
Subtly becoming a solid contender on the back of their home form are the Minnesota Wild and look good bets tonight as they host a stuttering Toronto Maple Leafs.
Built on defensive foundations the Wild have the third fewest goals conceded, goalie Josh Harding's stats are pretty mind-boggling to begin with but are made even more incredible by his continuing battling with multiple sclerosis.
Over 40% of those scores they have allowed have on the penalty kill and that is by some way the highest ratio in the NHL, it's one of very few chinks in their armour and one that Toronto are well equipped to expose.
I say that however offensive fluency has abandoned the Leafs in their last few contests, the injuries to centers Tyler Bozak and Dave Bolland have plenty to do with that. Minnesota on their current run are definitely worth backing at 2.10 and I'd definitely be tempted by the -1.5 handicap for a bigger win of 2.95.
Edmonton Oilers vs Dallas Stars
Only a couple of spots separate Dallas from bottom club Edmonton in the West but in reality the Stars are significantly better off eight points ahead and two contests behind.
When the conference is so stacked it's more to do with the Oilers being already adrift and slipping further back, A loss to Chicago last time out doesn't take anything away from a gritty trio of road overtime victories that the Stars put together prior to that, although their away record isn't outstanding overall a closer examination reveals all their defeats have come against strong sides.
It's desperate times when they are resorting to bringing in Ilya Bryzgalov from free agency, after both his dreadful form and acrimonious split from his time in Philadelphia. Devan Dubnyk still has time to save his starting job whilst Bryzgalov gets up to speed though, of any goaltender to make more than 10 starts his save percentage sits lowest at .876 so a sharp improvement is required.
Racking up the air miles because of their schedule has only hurt but even at Rexall Place they have no points and two goals post their only home win of the season, all in all it's an easy decision to take Dallas tonight.
Best Bet: Dallas Stars to win at 2.65.