When you are a team that is holding onto a playoff position, you do all that you can to hold on to it. One of the easiest ways to manage that is to take advantage of the teams you face that are struggling. That is what the New York Islanders are getting on Thursday night when they head out west to face a Calgary Flames team that is in real danger of sinking without a trace. The danger with these types of games is that it can be easy to overlook the struggling team, and perhaps start thinking that things are going to be easy. It’s never easy to get a win in the Saddledome, and the Flames are still a team that carries a lot of pride when playing in front of their home fans. This is a potential trip up game for the Islanders, and one that could make for a nice winning ticket with the updated NHL betting spread.
New York Islanders vs Calgary Flames Free NHL Pick
When: Thursday, February 25
Where: Scotiabank Saddledome at 9 PM EST
TV: MSG+ and RSNW
Radio: WRHU and CFAC
Live Stream: ROOT SPORTS Northwest HD
NHL Odds: TBA
Why bet on the New York Islanders
The Islanders (32-19-7) are on a nice little roll at the moment, and they have picked up wins in the first 2 games of their 7-game road trip. The next 3 games are all against teams out West, and the road that runs through Calgary, Edmonton, and Vancouver is one at very few teams travel without taking some sort of damage. The Islanders have not had too many problems with teams from the Pacific Division this season, and have posted an 8-2-1 record against that bunch so far. Their last meeting against the Flames did not go so well, though, as Calgary skated to a 4-0 win in that one. The Islanders are 13-11-3 on the road this season, and given how Calgary are playing right now, New York will feel pretty confident heading into this one. The Islanders are averaging 2.8 GPG, and are giving up 2.4 GPG.
Why bet on the Calgary Flames
The Flames (26-30-3) were one of the most exciting young teams in the league last season, and the general consensus was that they were going to take a big step forward this season. It’s fair to say that the step they have taken is in the wrong direction, as they have struggled to keep their opponents off the score board. Yes, they have had more than their fair share of injuries to goaltenders, but even when Ramo and Hiller were healthy, they simply weren’t doing enough to keep the Flames in games. The danger with his team is that they have a bunch of guys who can put the puck in the net, and that is something that the Islanders are going to need to be aware of, even with the Flames coming in having lost 5 of their last 6. Calgary are averaging 2.7 GPG, and are giving up 3.1 GPG.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
I think it’s fair to say that the safest bet in this one might well be the OVER. The Flames are leaking goals at a pretty awful rate, and I like them to give up a bunch more in what I think will be another loss.