NHL Betting Guide for Friday, January 7: Look for a Tight game in Carolina


January 7, 2022

Last night’s 10-game slate felt good, but we’re left picking up the pieces tonight with only two games on the go. Favorites continue to hit at an alarming rate this week, with seven more winning last night, making it 16 of the previous 20 over the past few days.

These are the wagers we’re looking at from FanDuel Sportsbook.

Neither team has been good leading up to the Washington Capitals and St. Louis Blues Friday night contest, and that’s resulted in an ambivalent betting line. The Caps are puckline favorites, while the Blues have a hardly noticeable edge on the moneyline. We’ve taken a stance against the Blues as regression candidates and expect their recent struggles to continue.

Since the end of November, the Blues have played 13 games and have outplayed their opponents in four of those contests. Despite the advanced metrics working against them, St. Louis claimed victory in eight of those games. We’ve seen inflated shooting and save percentages from the Blues over that span, resulting in the fifth-highest PDO in the NHL. St. Louis is due for a reckoning, and they could start to spiral over their coming games.

Washington’s five-on-five play has ebbed and flowed all season, but they remain a force across all strengths. The Caps have posted an expected goals-for percentage above 50.0% in seven straight and 10 of their past 11. Their offense remains a focal point of their success, as the Caps have attempted 12 or more high-danger chances in seven of those 11 games. Few teams can keep pace with them offensively, as Washington has only been out-chanced in four of those games.

St. Louis hasn’t been as good as their record implies, and they should continue to regress as their metrics remain inflated. The Caps’ five-on-five metrics have been lacking, but they have asserted themselves across all strengths and should continue that dominance on Friday night. We’re backing a Washington win.

The Picks: Capitals -110

All NHL predictions and picks are courtesy of SportsGrid.

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Thumbnail photo via James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

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