hockey

Penguins heavy home betting favorites against Blues as NHL season begins

Leave a comment

Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins, who typically take care of business as a big moneyline favorite on home ice, face an already banged-up team in their season opener.

The Penguins are a -200 moneyline favorite against the St. Louis Blues (+165) at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com in one of the featured betting matchups on the NHL’s opening night on Wednesday.

The Penguins, who are also the favorite on the odds to win the Stanley Cup, are 7-3 in their last 10 regular-season home games as a moneyline favorite of at least -175. They are also 14-6 in their last 20 home games in October.

St. Louis went 12-5 in its final 17 road games last season but is missing several regulars due to injuries, including D Jay Bouwmeester (ankle), C Patrik Berglund (shoulder) and LW Alexander Steen (hand). That could make it easier for the Penguins, whose only reported injury is to LW Patric Hornqvist (hand), to focus on stopping Blues RW Vladimir Tarasenko, the offensive leader for St. Louis.

The total has gone under in five of the Blues’ last six road games.

Elsewhere on Wednesday night, the San Jose Sharks (-160) are favored against the Philadelphia Flyers (+130). The Sharks finished last season as a shaky play at 3-6 on the puckline in their final nine home games, but C Joe Thornton and C Logan Couture were hampered by injuries at that time.

The Flyers, who are 2-7 in their last nine road games against the Pacific Division, are hoping to have D Shayne Gostisbehere (upper body) on the ice on Wednesday night.

The total has gone under in the Sharks’ last five home games in October.

The Winnipeg Jets (-120) are a slight home favorite against the Toronto Maple Leafs (-110). The Leafs, with a cadre of young stars led by C Auston Matthews, are overdue for a turn in fortune against Winnipeg. They are 2-8 in their last 10 games against Winnipeg, including an 0-5 streak in their last five road games.

The total has gone over in Toronto’s last five road games against Winnipeg. Last season the Jets, led by RW Patrik Laine, were seventh in the NHL in goals scored but allowed the fourth-most, so that trend might continue.

And the Edmonton Oilers (-160), led by Connor McDavid, are favored against the Calgary Flames (+130). While the Flames are more about offense by committee than star power with LW Johnny Gaudreau, C Sean Monahan and C Mikael Backlund leading the way, they are 8-3 in their last 11 road games against the Oilers.

Calgary’s Achilles heel was goaltending last season, but it has added veteran G Mike Smith. The total has gone under in nine of Edmonton’s last 13 home games against Calgary, according to the OddsShark NHL Database.

 

Carmen the Golden Retriever responds to our Knucklepuck request with epic video

Leave a comment

Here at NBC Sports, we love all animals.

But Carmen the Golden is quickly moving up our internal animal power rankings.

After we posted this article commending the 2-year old dog for saving some incredible shots, Carmen saw it and took our challenge of stopping the knucklepuck.

She literally quacked, er, laughed out loud at us and we couldn’t love it more.

My response to the NBC Sports article, it's knucklepuck time! . . . . #goldenretriever #hockeydog #knucklepuck #mightyducks

A post shared by Carmen The Golden Video Dog (@carmen_the_golden) on

Well done, Carmen.

For the record: this is not our first time successfully interacting with dogs on the Twitter.

Meet Carmen the Golden, the hockey Air Bud

Leave a comment

Even though the Stanley Cup Final is over, there is still important hockey news to cover.

Like the emergence of Carmen the Golden as one of the coolest sports dogs.

Carmen, who is a golden retriever, published an Instagram video (well, her owner did) of her in goal. The very good dog had some very acrobatic saves and blocked several goals in the clip. She stopped a few while lying down.

We only have one message for Carmen: It’s knucklepuck time.