Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 10:45 AM EST odds are subject to change.
Seattle +170 over Pittsburgh
7:05 PM EST. OT included. There is no question that the Penguins will be out for blood today. Here’s a team that has lost five straight and that allowed five goals in the third period of its last game, a 6-3 loss to the Sabres. The Penguins also lost in Seattle one week ago. Normally we wouldn’t be fading a team that has lost five in a row because their stock is low but that’s not the case here. Pittsburgh is a -200 favorite because the Kraken have very little market presence or credibility, thus their stock is much lower than Pittsburgh’s, thus the time to buy Seattle is now. This is a strong and deep visiting team that is getting better.
Seattle is getting production throughout its lineup. Morgan Geekie has often become the Kraken’s forgotten young centerman in a season that’s been largely about monitoring the every move of rookie centers Matty Beniers and Shane Wright. Still, with goals in three consecutive games and four of his past five, Geekie is quick to mention how his linemates, Daniel Sprong and Ryan Donato, have helped him.
When Wright was playing earlier on this season, others were sitting — most notably, Geekie and Sprong but that pair has piled on the points ever since, to where they’re making it impossible for coach Dave Hakstol to pull them from the lineup. Sprong has two goals, five assists in five games since sitting out a week while he worked in practice on getting his timing perfected. Geekie sat out a couple of early games, then got back into the lineup two weeks ago in Chicago. In six subsequent games, he notched four goals and added an assist. Brandon Tanev also has four assists his last five games bouncing between the third and fourth lines. Jaden Schwartz, Vince Dunn, Andre Burakovsky, Jordan Eberle and Oliver Bjorkstrand are all playing inspiring hockey. The Kraken has 11 players with six points or more so this is not some top-heavy team that is overachieving. They are a quiet 6-4-2 and it’s only going to get better.
The Kraken play a strong two-way game. They rank 7th or better in many of the puck-possession analytics that reveal which team is controlling play. Meanwhile the Penguins rank 16th or worse in many of those same categories. What we have here is the most under-the-radar team in the NHL playing some damn good hockey and taking back an absurd price against what is turning out to be a very beatable Pittsburgh squad.
Seattle +170 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 3.40)