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Pittsburgh Penguins vs. L.A. Kings Picks & NHL Preview

Penguins vs Kings NHL Line & Handicapping

Penguins and Kings Meet For First Time In Two Years Thursday Night

A Heavyweight clash highlights a busy night in the NHL Thursday when the Pittsburgh Penguins head to Los Angeles to take on the Kings.

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Pittsburgh (37-17-2-0) at Los Angeles (30-19-2-4)
When: 10:30 PM ET, Thursday, January 30, 2014
Where: Staples Center, Los Angeles, California
Broadcast: ROOT, FS-W
Pens vs. Kings Betting Lines
Pittsburgh Penguins -1½ +265 -110 Ov 5 -113
Los Angeles Kings +1½ -315 +100 Un 5 +102

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The Kings will be happy to be home after losing six of their last seven games – all away from Staples Center while the Penguins don’t care where they play – they have won five of their last seven games overall and now lead Boston by five points atop the Eastern Conference standings.

The Penguins have gone 7-2-1 in their last 10 games – impressive indeed but the two losses over that span came against Florida and Dallas in blowout fashion. Still, top to bottom, the Pens are one of the elite teams in the NHL – capable of raising their game at any time and getting it done in any rink in the league.

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Pittsburgh enters Thursday’s clash in the top quarter of NHL teams in terms of offense – 3.15 goals per game. Sydney Crosby continues to be on a different level and has opened up a 10 point lead in the race for the Art Ross, Chris Kunitz continues to show why his inclusion to Team Canada was a smart choice – he has four points in three games and even roll players are chipping in for this squad. Tanner Glass and Craig Adams each have two points in two games.
Marc Andre Fleury will likely get the start between the pipes Thursday – he is 2-1-0 with a 1.33 GAA and .947 save percentage in his last three games.

The Los Angeles Kings are in some sort of funk! The team has a total of one goal in their last four games and nobody – I mean nobody is getting it done in the offensive end of the rink. The power play is stuck in the mud converting on just three of their last 38 chances and even the reliable Jeff Carter (1 point in 4 games) has been invisible as of late. Simply put the Kings can’t score which is a major problem when facing the likes of Sid the Kid and the Boys.

Over the last couple of weeks the Kings have played St. Louis Blues, Boston Bruins, Phoenix Coyotes and Anaheim among other top notch teams. Thursday night offers zero relief.

It’s a good thing for defense and goaltending. The Kings’ style makes them competitive every night despite the lack of offense. The team leads the league in goals against per game (2.04) and they possess one of the best weapons in the game in the form of Jonathan Quick. He is 1-1-0 with a 1.50 GAA and .942 save percentage in his last two games. Quick has a knack of getting up for big games and will likely have to be the difference once again Thursday.

Dave’s FREE NHL Betting Prediction

A few trends to consider:
• PIT are 9-1 in their last 10 vs. Pacific.
• Over is 6-2 in PIT last 8 vs. Western Conference.
• PIT are 19-7 in their last 26 Thu. games.
• Under is 7-1 in LA last 8 vs. Metropolitan.
• Under is 10-2-3 in LA last 15 home games.
• LA are 42-14 in their last 56 home games.

These teams don’t have much of a history against each other. But one thing we know about Pittsburgh – teams have to be at their absolute best in order to defeat them. The Kings are far from their absolute best right now – look for the Pens to show why they are a favorite to be playing deep into June.

Pick: Pittsburgh Penguins -110


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About DaveB

Dave B has been a Fantasy Football writer for us for 10 years. A couch potato wannabe, Dave’s insights have been read by 10’s of people for years. He hope’s for world peace + global relaxation. Enjoy and remember only smoke things that are completely natural.