Saturday’s NHL Picks – January 12, 2019

by Flip Livingstone on January 12, 2019


Well, ladies and gents, the kid is back in the game. And after my two-week Caribbean hiatus and a few too many cuba libres and cervezas, I’m fired-up to start sprinkling some wagers on the ice once again.

Before the break, I had an even 3-3 week, but we all know that ain’t gonna cut it. Thankfully, I’m really feeling a few of the below matchups this week, and I think this is the day to make some serious coin. Hot teams and favourable spots are making this Saturday look ripe for the picking.

So, let’s pick our spots and cash in. Good luck! 

2018-19 Record

Gold: 5-3       

Silver: 6-2
Bronze: 2-6
Side Bets: 13-11

Overall combined: 26-22 (54%)

Gold

Tampa Bay Lightning @ Buffalo Sabres – Pick: Lightning

The upstart Sabres head into tonight’s matchup against the league-leading Lightning with losses in six of their last 10. Despite a surprisingly hot start, that included a ridiculous 10-game win streak, Buffalo finds itself barely clinging to the last wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference.

On the other hand, the Bolts have clearly been the toast of the entire league this season, pacing the NHL in both wins (34) and points (70), not to mention a staggering league-leading goal total of 183.

Tampa is 9-1 in its last 10 overall and carry a solid 14-4 record over the last 18 games against Buffalo. The Lightning keep rolling in this one and win by at least two goals. Lock it in as my Gold play of the week.

Silver

Ottawa Senators @ San Jose Sharks – Pick: Sharks

If you’ve read my column before, you are well-aware that one of my favorite things to do is betting against the Ottawa Senators – for more than a few reasons. But, let’s be honest, the team is downright bad and this season is already a right off. Now, I have to give the Sens some credit for owning a strong record against the Sharks over the last 10, which stands at a somewhat shocking mark of 7-2-1.

Ottawa may have won the last two, but before that, the club was winless in eight straight. Whereas the Sharks are playing their best hockey of the season, winning five straight.

Don’t overthink this one, hammer San Jose in what could be a very one-sided affair.

Bronze

Vegas Golden Knights @ Chicago Blackhawks – Pick: Golden Knights

After a sluggish start, the Golden Knights have easily been one of the hottest teams of the second quarter of the 2018-19 season.

Before Thursday’s loss to the San Jose Sharks, Vegas had reeled off seven straight victories that saw the team allow a total of only 12 goals-against. To the surprise of absolutely no one, future Hall-of-Famer Marc-Andre Fleury has been the focal point in Vegas’ resurgence. Flower is riding a solid string of starts that’s seen the wily vet post a stellar 5-1-0 record to go along with a sparkling .944 save percentage and one shutout.

Chicago is arguably the worst team in the league this year and the Knights are recapturing their 2017-18 form that saw the club go all the way to the Stanley Cup. Now, I don’t see them going on another storybook run, but bank on them to get the W tonight in the Windy City.

Side Bets

Pittsburgh Penguins @ L.A. Kings – Pick: Penguins

Boston Bruins @ Toronto Maple Leafs – Pick: Over 6

New York Rangers @ New York Islanders – Pick: Islanders

Flip Livingstone is a former NHL writer for theScore with past experience at such outlets as Postmedia, Hockey Night in Canada, and the CBC. You can follow him on Twitter @FlipLivingstone.