Hockey Handicapping Articles
Updated list of all of Doc's Sports Articles.
NHL All-Star Game Predictions and Expert Betting Picks
by Doc's Sports - 1/24/2020
This year, the NHL All-Star game will take place on Saturday January 25, 2020, at the Enterprise Center in St. Louis. This will be the NHL's 65th edition of the showcase but just the fifth under the newest format, which pits the Atlantic Division against the Metropolitan and the Central against the Pacific, for the right to battle in the finals for a payout of a cool $1 million.
2020 NHL Stanley Cup Predictions with Futures Odds
by Trevor Whenham - 1/14/2020
The NHL All-Star game is just around the corner, falling on the NFL's weekend off before the Super Bowl. As we get ready for that break, it's a good time to assess where we are at in the NHL with a look ahead to the Stanley Cup. The Cup won't get hoisted until well into June so there is a ton of hockey left to play, but we have seen enough to make a few Stanley Cup predictions. Here's a look at some of the more interesting teams at lower odds:
NHL Division Winner Odds and Expert Betting Predictions
by Trevor Whenham - 12/19/2019
The playoff format the NHL has used these last few years has no shortage of flaws. It's dumb, really. But one positive it does have is that it makes the divisional races much more interesting than they are in the NBA. Where you finish in your division really matters. A lot. Too much. So, as we near the short Christmas break in the league, it's a good time to check in on how these races are breaking down.
NHL Betting Advice: Value Teams Better than Record
by Trevor Whenham - 12/11/2019
We are more than a third of the way into the NHL season. The sample size is large enough that we probably know what most teams are. When you look at the standings, though, it is striking how many teams aren't what their record suggests they are. Edmonton, Arizona and the Islanders are all teams that could easily be accused of overachieving and putting up numbers they will struggle to match in the second half of the schedule.
Expert NHL Handicapping and Betting Advice: Home and Road Splits
by Trevor Whenham - 12/6/2019
There is no better indicator in the NHL - at not one you can see in a glance - of a team in the NHL that has some issues that they need to resolve if they want to have any real success than a gap in performance on the road compared to at home. Winning on home ice is easier than on the road for reasons both real - like having the last line change - and psychological.
Expert Hockey Betting Advice: Which Team is Poised for Post-Holiday Turnaround?
by Trevor Whenham - 11/27/2019
There is a theory in NHL circles that if a team is not in a playoff position by Thanksgiving, then they are in real trouble. It's more than a theory, really - it's a pretty solid trend. In the five years prior to last season, 62 of the 80 teams that had been in a playoff spot as people sat down to gorge themselves on turkey were still there when the season ended so many months later. That's a 77.5 percent rate. Last year, things were just a little off of that pace, as 11 of the 16 playoff teams were in those spots in November.
NHL Betting Advice for the Best and Worst Teams for Wagering Profits
by Trevor Whenham - 11/20/2019
We are a quarter of the way through the NHL season, give or take. Some things have turned out as expected - the Bruins and Capitals are as strong as expected, and the Blues have kept rolling after their stellar second half and Cup win last year. But there are several results that aren't living up to expectations.
2019 NHL Season Point Totals Predictions
by Trevor Whenham - 9/25/2019
We are at that point in the NHL preseason where rosters are starting to look much like they will in the regular season - at least for home games and road games close to home. The more of a sense we get of what teams will look like, the better we can spot the potential value in the NHL season point totals that are being offered. Here are some of the numbers that stand out, followed by all the ones that are less interesting points. As you'll see, I was in an optimistic mood as I selected these, and I focused on the "overs":
Expert NHL Handicapping: Making Sense Of These Crazy Playoffs
by Trevor Whenham - 5/1/2019
The NHL Playoffs have just been bizarre this year. All four division leaders were out in the first round, which means that all four wild card teams advanced. Three of those wild card teams are in decent shape to win another series. One of the division winners, Tampa Bay, had a regular season that was historically great, and they were very solid Stanley Cup favorites, but they were the first team sent packing in the playoffs. Six of the nine teams that had 100 points in the regular season lost in their opening series, and two more are trailing now.
What's Next for Tampa Bay Lightning After Epic Playoff Collapse?
by Trevor Whenham - 4/24/2019
The NHL Playoffs have been absolutely bizarre so far, and the first round isn't even over yet. For the first time ever, both regular-season conference winners failed to survive the first round - and they played only nine games between them. Calgary's demise was shocking enough - and very hard to take as a Calgarian, let me tell you.
Presidents' Trophy Winners Have Struggled to Achieve Stanley Cup Glory
by Trevor Whenham - 4/1/2019
The Tampa Bay Lightning have been a good team over long stretches of time and have won a Stanley Cup in 2004, but they have never won a Presidents' Trophy for having the most points in the NHL. Until now, that is - and they have certainly made up for lost time. They haven't just won the Trophy this year - they have made a mockery of the race.
Expert NHL Handicapping: Is Tampa Bay One of All-Time Great Teams?
by Trevor Whenham - 3/28/2019
The Tampa Bay Lightning are having a truly incredible season by any measure. With five games left to play, they have 122 points and 59 wins. With three more wins, they would tie the 1996 Detroit Red Wings for the most wins in a season. And if they run the table, they would tie the 1977 Montreal Canadiens for the most points in a season. And they are 21 points ahead of the Bruins and Flames, tied for second overall. This is a truly historic season, and we are lucky to be watching it.
Expert NHL Handicapping: Calgary Flames True Contender?
by Trevor Whenham - 3/14/2019
The Calgary Flames are an odd story this year. A tough team that is tough to get a sense of. Heading into this season they were seen as a contender in the Western Conference - but they were contending to make the playoffs, if they were lucky, and probably not much more.
NHL Betting Advice: Best and Worst Wagering Teams for Moneyline Bettors
by Trevor Whenham - 3/4/2019
We are more than three-quarters of the way through the NHL regular season, so we largely know what can be expected of teams from a betting perspective. We know what teams are by now. And that is obviously much more flattering for some teams than others. It's a good time to check in with our betting Studs and Duds - the teams that have been most kind to bettors, and those that have burned piles of money.
Expert NHL Handicapping: Impact of the Trade Deadline
by Trevor Whenham - 2/27/2019
It wasn't the most active or exciting NHL trade deadline that we have ever seen, but in the end we saw a few deals definitely worth talking about. And, particularly in the Western Conference, many of the top contenders changed their look. As is always the case after a trade deadline passes, our job as bettors is to determine which trades really matter and how significant they really are.
Expert NHL Handicapping: New York Islanders Top Betting Team
by Trevor Whenham - 2/15/2019
The New York Islanders were not blessed when it came to their divisional assignment. They are stuck in a group in the Metropolitan Division with current powers like Washington and Pittsburgh and regular powers like the Rangers. That's just geography, though, so you can't dwell on it. What really stands out right now is that somehow the Islanders are leading the division.
Expert NHL Handicapping: Western Conference Playoff Race
by Trevor Whenham - 2/13/2019
When we entered this NHL season, I wrote, in several different ways, that I thought that the race to the playoffs was going to be very intense in the Western Conference. The conference seemed very deep, with 10 to 12 teams that could legitimately contend for a division win or miss the playoffs as well. At this point it appears that I was only half right. The race is very tight - at least at the bottom of the conference. But it is a race between some truly lousy teams.
NHL Betting Advice: Which Cellar Dwellers Will Tank for Draft Position?
by Trevor Whenham - 1/16/2019
The NHL season has only just passed the halfway point. There is a lot of hockey left to play. But the league feels top-heavy this year, so it feels like there are a larger than normal number of teams that already don't have much left to play for.
Expert NHL Betting Advice: Tampa Bay Lightning on Pace to Threaten Points Record
by Trevor Whenham - 1/11/2019
Starting just after I turned a year old in 1976, the Montreal Canadiens launched into a season that saw them earn 132 points. 60-8-12. A truly incredible season - one that ended with a sweep of Boston in the Stanley Cup Final. Why, aside from nostalgia for a time I experienced but can't possibly remember, do I mention that? Well, those 132 points are the NHL record for success in a season.
Expert NHL Handicapping: Winnipeg Jets no Fluke Team
by Trevor Whenham - 1/11/2019
It is a heady time to be a hockey fan in Canada right now - optimistic like we have almost forgotten how to be. We feel like we own this sport - and let's be honest, we are right - but a Canadian team hasn't won a Stanley Cup title since Montreal in 1993 and hasn't even played since Vancouver in 2011. That streak could very well continue, but right now the Calgary Flames are second in the NHL, the Toronto Maple Leafs are tied for fourth, and the Winnipeg Jets are just two points behind Toronto.
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