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NHL Free Pick: Penguins vs. Red Wings Betting Lines & Preview

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Weekly NHL Betting action sees the Pittsburgh Penguins taking on the on Detroit Red Wings October 23 at Joe Louis Arena. Cappers Picks provides free NHL handicapping tips all season long.

Eastern Conference Heavyweights Pittsburgh and Detroit meet in the Motor City Thursday night as the Penguins try to avenge a 5-3 home loss to the Philadelphia Flyers last night and the Wings try to bounce back from a 2-1 road OT loss versus the Canadiens Tuesday.

Daily NHL Hockey Odds

Daily NHL Hockey Odds
Pittsburgh (3-2-0-0) at Detroit (3-1-1-1)
When: 7:30 PM ET, Thursday, October 23, 2014
Where: Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan
Broadcast: SN360, TVA2, ROOT, FS-D
NHL Betting Line: Red Wings -109
NHL Over/Under Betting Line: 5.5
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Both teams fancy themselves serious contenders in the East and will get a good idea of just where they stand early in this NHL season.

Penguins

The Pittsburgh Penguins delivered a dud last night against the Flyers – hopes are that they got their bad game out of the way.

Sidney Crosby went pointless for the first time this season, the sensational power play failed to click for the first time this year and stellar players like Kris Letang and Brandon Sutter were a minus -4 while Evgeni Malkin was minus -3. It is pretty hard to fathom that level of futility two games in a row for this team for sure.

Pittsburgh’s power play started the season 8-for-17 but delivered a bagel last night. The man advantage had been a big reason the Penguins got off to a fast start. Five of Evgeni Malkin’s eight points have come on the power play as an example. The Pens will be matched up against Detroit’s stellar penalty killing unit in this one – the Wings have yet to surrender a power play goal through six games so far.

Offensively Pittsburgh is about where you thought they should be – near the top of the NHL averaging 3.8 goals per game. Crosby has four goals and five assists, Patric Hornqvist has four goals and four assists and Malkin has two goals and six assists to lead the way for the potent Pens. Pittsburgh may have their hands full Thursday however – the Wings are allowing just 1.50 goals per game this year – one of the best defensive clubs in the game so far.

Red Wings

The Detroit Red Wings welcomed Pavel Datsyuk to the lineup Tuesday night – he assisted on Detroit’s only goal in Montreal. Needless to say he is a big addition to a team that had looked just OK without him the first five games. Hopes are that Datsyuk will help a power play that hasn’t been great so far – 0-for-13 the last three games and just 2-for-24 so far this year (8.3%).

Datsyuk will help an offense that has been anything but potent so far this season. The team is averaging just 2.00 goals per game with only seven players sitting with multiple points in the year. That said Henrik Zetterberg has been a handful with two goals and six assists and Gustaf Nyquist has four goals already this season.

Defensively the Wings have been just fine allowing just 1.50 goals per game. Jimmy Howard has been terrific posting a 1.77 GAA and .937 save percentage. He may rest in favor of Jonas Gustavsson who posted a shutout in his only action this year. Howard however owns a 3-0-1 record with a .930 save percentage in five career games versus Pittsburgh.

NHL Gambling Trends

• Over is 8-1-2 in PIT last 11 Thu. games.
• PIT are 7-3 in their last 10 vs. Atlantic.
• Under is 9-1-3 in DET last 13 overall.
• Under is 7-1-3 in DET last 11 home games.
• Under is 7-3-1 in DET last 11 Thu. games.
• Under is 6-2 in the last 8 meetings in Detroit.
• Home team is 11-4 in the last 15 meetings.

The Pittsburgh Penguins are a much better team than they showed last night and they did go 2-0-1 last year against the Wings.

Expect Pittsburgh to bounce back Thursday as their potent offense outscores Detroit’s underwhelming offense.

4* Free NHL Play on Pittsburgh Penguins -105

Special teams should be a factor – that advantage goes to the Pens.

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