Two teams entering this matchup on multiple game-winning streaks are set to collide tonight, with the Pittsburgh Penguins visiting the Montreal Canadiens.
All Odds Courtesy of FanDuel SportsbookPittsburgh Penguins (-172) vs. Montreal Canadiens (+142) Total: 6.5 (O-105, U-115)
Pittsburgh and Montreal have both won two straight games, and one of these teams will make it three in this marquee matchup at the Bell Centre tonight. These two teams already met earlier this season, which saw the Habs pick up a 3-2 victory. After going through a bunch of struggles of late, the Pens appear to have turned a corner and are looking much more like the team many expected they would be, which is a playoff contender.
Unlike the Pens, the Habs don’t have expectations this season to make the playoffs, with the focus more set on player development of their young talent. Still, the Canadiens have been staying in a lot of games due to their goaltending, which has had to be very strong behind a young defense. It’s hard to see that consistency continuing as the season moves forward, but it’s impressive right now what this team has accomplished despite many looking for them to be amongst the worst teams in the league.
Considering tonight’s projected goalie matchup, the visiting Penguins should turn towards Tristan Jarry between the pipes, while the Canadiens are likely to do the same with Jake Allen. The Pens netminder has posted a 4-3-1 record, paired with a .903 save percentage, while Allen is 4-5 with a .907 save percentage.
Pittsburgh is one of the higher-scoring offenses in the NHL, with the eighth most goals per game, which should give them an edge tonight if they can continue finishing at their current rate. It’s only a matter of time before we see some cracks in this Canadiens’ defense and goaltending, while you know this veteran Pens team will want to exact some revenge after an early season loss against this Habs team.
It’s not a great price for the Pens on the moneyline at -172, but there’s definite value in them on the puck line at +146. They have their top goalie in net and should find ways to solve Allen in goal, in addition to limiting the Canadiens’ offensive chances. As a result, it’s hard not to fade the visitors to win this game by multiple goals tonight.
Best Bet: Penguins puck line -1.5 (+146)
Even with a Pens offense that can certainly do considerable damage on any given slate, this matchup doesn’t equate to one where you should expect a high-scoring affair. We already saw these teams combine for a tight 3-2 affair early on, and that type of result is one you should expect again, with the Canadiens scoring at a less frequent rate. Pittsburgh needs Jarry to be better, and he’s slowly getting in a groove, which should make for a challenging night for this Montreal offense. There’s some solid value here in considering the under 6.5 at -115.
Best Bet: Under 6.5 (-115)
One of the NHL’s most consistent goal-scoring threats over the last three years has been Penguins winger Jake Guentzel. He enters this matchup against the Habs after scoring four goals over his previous five games, giving him eight this season. He possesses such a unique skill set that it’s difficult to ignore what he brings to the table on any given slate, especially in this great matchup against the Canadiens. Guentzel is currently listed at +116 to score tonight, and there’s too much value in that number to ignore.
Best Prop: Jake Guentzel to Record Over 0.5 Goals (+116)