December 21, 2016

NHL Hockey Betting: Philadelphia Flyers at New Jersey Devils

NHL Hockey Betting:  Philadelphia Flyers at New Jersey Devils&h=253&w=372&zc=1

Two teams heading in opposite directions go at it on Thursday night as the Philadelphia Flyers head to Newark to take on the New Jersey Devils. The Flyers are 8-1-1 in their last 10 games and are 2 points back of the second place Columbus Blue Jackets and 3 points back of the Metropolitan Division co-leaders Pittsburgh and the New York Rangers. Pretty much everyone in the top tier of the Metropolitan Division is playing well but that definitely doesn’t include the New Jersey Devils. The Devils are 2-6-2 in their last ten games and have lost 7 straight overall. The good news is their home record which is 8-2-2 while the Flyers are 8-6-1 on the road. The season is already getting away from the Devils who are 11 points back of the 5th place Capitals and 16 back of the first place Rangers and Penguins.

One of the Devils’ biggest problems is goaltender Cory Schneider who is having a substandard year. He’s 9-10-5 on the year with a 2.93 goals against average and a 0.904 save percentage. That doesn’t get it done in today’s NHL and the Devils are 25th in goals against (3.0 goals against per game). That performance is all the more problematic given the Devils offensive shortcoming–they’re 26th in goals scored per game (2.3) and 25th in power play percentage (15%). They do have a decent penalty kill (#10, 82.7%) but that doesn’t help much if they can’t score goals or keep their opponents from scoring.

The Flyers will counter with Steve Mason who is playing very well after a poor start to the season. Mason has a record of 14-9-4 with a 2.65 goals against average and a 0.910 save percentage. He’s really been in great form during the Flyers’ recent winning run. The Flyers score goals in bunches–5th in the league in goals per game (3.0). They’re still not a good defensive team (22nd in goals against with 2.9 goals per game) but they’ve got top ten special teams with the #5 power play and #9 penalty kill. The Devils have been getting butchered when they step up in class–2-11 -8.9 units in games against opponents with winning records this year. They’re 2-6 -3.8 units after a loss by 2 or more goals in their previous game and 4-9 -4.8 units after allowing 4 or more goals.