NHL Hockey Betting: Montreal Canadiens at Nashville Predators

NHL Hockey Betting:  Montreal Canadiens at Nashville Predators&h=235&w=320&zc=1

As the NHL schedule winds down to the three day holiday break the Montreal Canadiens are reeling in the absence of all-world goaltender Carey Price. They’re also missing some important players on offense with Brendan Gallagher and Devante Smith-Pelly sidelined for extended periods of time. They might also be without defenseman Jeff Petry for this game. Injuries are a large part of why the Habs have lost 7 of 8 and 8 of 10. Their biggest problem isn’t defense–the Habs seem to allow exactly 3 goals in every game now. Seven of their last ten have seen exactly three goals scored and they’re coming off a streak of 11 straight allowing 3 or fewer (allowed 6 in a 6-2 loss at Dallas on Saturday). That’s not great play on the part of Mike Condon and the Habs defense but not shamefully bad. The problem is on offense where they’ve scored only 20 goals in 12 games for a brutal 1.66 per in this stretch. You don’t need to be a mathematical genius to realize that these numbers aren’t going to work.

Nashville is another team that should be winning more games. They’ve lost eight of their last 12 though six of the eight losses have been by a single goal. They’re not getting whipped by any means but just haven’t been good enough. Pekka Rinne is returning to form in net after a haphazard start to the season but even the best goalie can’t be expected to win when the offense is getting only a single goal as Nashville has done in 5 of their last 11 games (and two of their last three). Having said that, this is a winnable game for Nashville against a Canadiens team that has lost all of the confidence they created during their record breaking undefeated start to the season.

The Predators are playing their last game before the break but given the mindset of this hard working team that’s actually in their favor–they can put it all into this game knowing they’ve got 5 days off before their next game (at home against the Rangers). Montreal has lost 7 of 11 against the Western Conference this season and Nashville is the better, healthier team.


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