I'm on the road for work and this week's picks are coming to you from Wawa, ON the home of legend Chris Simon … hahaha. They have a Chris Simon drive, which is of course the street the arena is on. Haven't had as much time for the picks this week, as I've been busy travelling and working so I apologize for any lack of insight into the matchups. Thunder is at home so we won't include her picks this week, but we've got 13 games on the schedule so enough dwelling on what could have been and here we go!
(Angus here, putting these up a bit early because Marty got them to me early, and some of you gamblers out there may want to get an early start on your tickets!)
Calgary Flames @ Los Angeles Kings
The Flames have the 2nd best road record in the NHL heading into LA Saturday night. Kopitar has 16 pts. in 9 homes games (including 10 goals) and 12 pts. in 12 career games versus the Flames. Kipper heads into the contest with a 13-5-1 2.31 GAA and a .918 SV%.
Pittsburgh Penguins @ Atlanta Thrashers
Ilya Kovalchuk is a man on a mission. 10 pts. since returning from injury and is averaging 2 ppg at home. Meanwhile the Penguins are back to their winning ways since the return of Malkin to the lineup. His return should also help with Sidney Crosby's production who's measly 3 pts. in 7 games were nothing compared to what Malkin was able to do when Crosby went down with a high ankle sprain.
Pick: T (Thrashers win in shootout)
Washington Capitals @ Toronto Maple Leafs
I'm watching the Leafs blow a 2 goal lead in the 3rd period vs. the Canes in Carolina as I write this. Even without Ovechkin in the lineup this should be an easy victory for the Caps, the fact the Leafs have only won one game at home (although against the Wings) doesn't instill confidence in the blue and white. Gustavsson has looked a little shaky getting pulled in Chicago and giving up 4 to Carolina.
Buffalo Sabres @ Ottawa Senators
The Sens are coming off a strong effort against the Pens while the Sabres are coming off their worst defeat of the season versus the Thrashers. Both Miller and Lalime have posted losing records against the Sens with GAA over 3.00.
Florida Panthers @ NY Rangers
Despite their sub .500 record the Panthers have recorded pts. in 4 straight games, winning 3 of them, including their convincing win over the Sabres on Wednesday night. Vokoun has a .932 SV% on the road this year, however he may get the nod for Friday's game versus the Wings, the other option, Clemmensen has a 5.76 GAA in 2 road starts this year. Perhaps look for Vokoun to go back to back. Gaborik is tied for the goal scoring lead with 15. The fact that Gaborik is still in the lineup is an early Xmas gift for all of his fantasy owners. The Rangers have only mustered 14 GF in 7 games in November.
Detroit Red Wings @ Montreal Canadiens
The Wings seemed to have found their rhythm posting 5 wins in 7 games in the month of November, including 9 and 7 goal outbursts in the same week. They head into Montreal versus a rejuvenated Carey Price, who's been simply amazing as of late,