The Minnesota Wild (23-23-5, 51 points) find themselves out of the playoff picture as they try to overcome a seven-point deficit to the St. Louis Blues and Los Angeles Kings for the last wild card spot. The current NHL standings show Vegas (31-15-6, 68 points) have a game in hand over the Vancouver Canucks but trails the Canucks by eight points for the lead in the Pacific Division.
Tonight’s Wild vs Knights matchup odds have the Knights as a -140 favorite with a total of 5.5 (over -125). Puck drop is scheduled for 10:00 p.m. ET / 7:00 p.m. PT from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Minnesota Needs To Build Wild Momentum
The Wild are fresh off a much-needed win against the Pittsburgh Penguins behind goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury’s 34 saves. The 3-2 win was the second straight for a team that is desperate to put together a streak where they’ve been on the right side of the mass majority of their remaining NHL scores. Minnesota has won five of their last seven but will not play four likely playoff teams in their next six games. If they get through this stretch with at least eight points they can start thinking about running down the teams who occupy the current wild card.
The problem for the Wild is the lack of offensive depth. The top three isn’t a problem with Joel Eriksson EK (21-19-40 points). Kirill Kaprizov (20-27-47 points) and Matt Boldy (17-18-35 points). Kaprizov has 23 points and a +9 rating over his last 16 games. He is the first player in Wild history to hit the 20-goal mark in four straight seasons.
Eriksson Ek has nine power-play goals and 12 points in his last 10 games. Outside of that, Minnesota is strong down the middle but it’s unlikely that any of their wingers outside of Boldy (17 goals) will hit the 20-goal mark this season. Head Coach John Hynes said that his team must require a “certain level of intensity” if they want to compete for a postseason spot.
Knights Well Rested But Dealing With Illness
It’s not unusual to look at the VGK injury report and see a much of names listed, but it is unusual to see illness as a reason why. We know that goaltender Logan Thompson is out of tonight’s game, which means we’ll see Adin Hill (14-2-2, .937, 1.89 GA) between the pipes.
Thompson’s injury is listed as an illness, as are Mark Stone, Zach Whitecloud, and Jonas Rondbjerg who are expected to play. It’s not the first time the Golden Knights have had to deal with an illness going through their locker room, back in the middle of January that also found its way to Thompson. There are no specifics about what type of illness the team is dealing with. The good news is, they haven’t played since Thursday which means that should be enough time to work its way out of the room.
Vegas looks to improve on their 19-5-2 home record, but to do that they must move the puck quickly to avoid a Wild team that seems to be re-committed to playing tight defense. We conclude our Wild vs Knights matchup odds preview with our official selection.
Total Adjusted In Our Favor
The Goaltending match-up looks like it’s going to be Hill vs. Filip Gustavsson (14-13-2, .897, 3.19 GA) for the Wild. 61% of the money wagered so far is on the Golden Knights along with 74% of the tickets.
The opening number of VGK -145 was adjusted to -140 with the total dropping a half goal to 5.5 (over -125) after opening 6 (under -120). We’re going in the direction of over but only if we can lock ourselves into a 5.5. If you’re feeling particularly good about this play, there are still some 6’s out there with the over returning +105.
That does it for our Wild vs Knights matchup odds preview, we wish you all the best with your NHL picks and parlays on Monday.