Free NHL Picks: Coyotes at Kings Odds
by George Monroy - 10/23/2013
The Los Angeles Kings are in the third game of an extended homestand where they will play eight of their next nine matchups inside of the Staples Centers. The team will probably be looking to put together a solid winning streak in order to gain some ground on a packed Pacific Division that already has four teams with six or more victories. Los Angeles may not have started the season the way it would have wanted to and suffered two losses during their first three games. However, the team still believes that they belong at the top of the Western Conference and will be out to prove that against a tough division opponent in the Phoenix Coyotes on Thursday night.
Phoenix was not expected to be a major player in the West this season, and many sportsbooks gave them the second-worst Western Conference futures odds. Yet the team has played well through the beginning of the year and is hanging tough in the division race by earning points in eight of their 10 games played this season. The Coyotes could very well be a playoff contender if they keep up their current pace and continue to produce solid offensive production. Let’s take an in-depth look at Thursday’s Coyotes versus Kings game and figure out the best side of the matchup to wager on.
Coyotes at Kings Betting Story Lines
Phoenix is in the middle of a two-game win streak that started with an impressive 5-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday. The team then went on to beat the Calgary Flames 4-2 on Tuesday and have relied on the trio of Martin Hanzal, Mikkel Boedker, and Mike Ribeiro to initiate the offense. Hanzal leads the team with eight points—six of which are assists—while Ribeiro has scored in seven straight games and has four goals against his last two opponents. Coyotes’ head coach Dave Tippett has been pleased with the team’s performance and the depth they now have at center.
The Kings have won five of their last seven games and have seen some improvement from the beginning of the year, but they have struggled on offense. Los Angeles’ head coach Darryl Sutter has not been shy about moving his lines around since his top unit has underperformed through 10 games. Anze Kpitar, the team’s leader in points, has not scored a goal outside of shootouts all season. The Kings currently rank a very disappointing 22nd in goals scored per game with 2.3 and are in the middle of the pack in goals allowed, where they rank 12th with 2.5 per game. The team also ranks 12th in power play percentage and 11th in penalty kill percentage.
Phoenix currently gives up more shot attempts than they take and average only 32.5 attempts while allowing their opponents 33.2. Los Angeles averages 30.5 attempts and only allows opponents 27.7. Coyotes’ right winger Shane Doan is not expected to play in Thursday’s matchup against the Kings because of a lower-body injury. The Kings do not have any injured players going into the matchup and are expected to be fully healthy.
Coyotes at Kings NHL Betting Odds and Key Trends
The Kings opened as a -157 moneyline favorite over the underdog Coyotes, who are receiving +143 moneyline odds, according to BetOnline. The total opened at five goals, with the “over” being a slight favorite at -116. The Kings are 5-2 during their last seven overall games but are 0-4 during their last four games playing on two day’s rest. The Coyotes are 4-1 during their last five Thursday games and are also 5-2 during their last seven overall games. In the last four meetings between the two teams, the home squad is 4-0. Los Angeles has dominated this series over the last couple of years and is 7-3 during the last 10 matchups and is 7-2 during the last nine meeting inside the Staples Center. The “under” has a 8-1-3 record over the last 12 matchups in Los Angeles.
Free NHL Picks: Coyotes at Kings Betting Predictions
Los Angeles is on an extended homestand and coming off of two day’s rest. The team should come into this matchup ready to play and make up for disappointing loss to the Calgary Flames during the team’s last outing. The Kings are not a huge favorite here and are getting a very good price in a game that they cannot afford to lose. The NHL has a long season, and many times the best betting value can be found by simply figuring out which team will come into a matchup with more energy and motivation. The Coyotes are on a two-game winning streak and already have 14 points on the year and are drastically overachieving. The Kings, on the other hand, are coming off of a loss and feel like they are underachieving with only 12 points on the season. It is only 10 games into the season, but Los Angeles is already feeling the pressure, while the Coyotes are feeling great and on top of the world. This is a situation where the Kings should come in hungry and desperate. Take Los Angeles on the moneyline.
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