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Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Detroit Red Wings NHL Picks | Preview

2011 NHL Hockey Free Predictions: Penguins vs Red Wings

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PITTSBURGH PENGUINS (41-22-8) vs. DETROIT RED WINGS (43-20-8)
Date/Time: Monday, March 21, 7:00 PM ET
Venue: Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan
Broadcast: TSN2 (HD), RIS, VERSUS (HD)
Pens vs. Wings Betting Lines from Sportsbook.com
Spread: Pittsburgh +1.5 (-230) Detroit -1.5 (+190)
Moneyline: Pittsburgh +140: Detroit -160
Over/Under: 5.5 goals
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Star Power will be on display as the Pittsburgh Penguins travel to Detroit on Monday night – or will it? We already know that Crosby and Malkin will miss Monday’s game and now there is a chance that Pavel Datsuyk and Johan Franzen could also be absent for their second consecutive game. Both teams have been OK over their last 10 games and both have teams nipping at their heels in their respective Conference standings.

Pittsburgh played pretty well on Sunday but lost 5-2 at Madison Square. Matt Cooke proved that he is the biggest “boob” in the game with yet another blatant, brutal and stupid head shot. It takes a lot but Cooke is now an even bigger boob than Sean Avery – but I digress!

The Pens have been solid on offense lately but the goaltending has been somewhat suspect. Chris Kunitz has finally shaken the injury rust and is the best player on the ice for the Pens with six points in his last three games. Jordan Staal has embraced the leadership role and he and his line mate Tyler Kennedy have been solid in the last week or so. Pittsburgh’s depth has passed the test.

For the Pens to have a chance on Monday night, Marc-Andre Fleury is going to have to be better. He is just 1-2-0 in his last three starts with a 3.28 goals against average.

Detroit has injury issues of their own ahead of Monday’s game – if Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen are forced to sit again, offense will be difficult to come by especially since Thomas Holmstrom, Dan Cleary and Nicklas Lidstrom are in a bit of a slump at the moment. Detroit has plenty of stars that can and will need to step up for the team – San Jose and Phoenix are close behind in the standings!

Jimmy Howard will likely get the start in goal for Detroit’s middle of the pack defense. He is 3-1-0 in his last four starts with a 1.48 goals against average. Howard has been prone to the occasional bad game – Wings fans hope that it doesn’t happen on Monday.

Betting Prediction: The Pittsburgh Penguins are making their front office look like the best in the NHL at the moment. It is a testament to the coaching and the resolve of this team that they are still comfortably in a playoff position. I like them to take advantage of a Wings team that is hurting and is just 8-10-2 on home ice in their last 20 games. If Datsuyk and Franzen play, it could be a slightly different story but at +140, I just can’t resist the Pens.

Pick: Pittsburgh Penguins +140

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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.


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