Joel Dorcas | February 9th, 2020
It’s safe to say our featured games for our previous article didn’t pan out as expected. Edmonton and Philly failed to meet expectations on home ice, but we are not here to pout, it’s on to the next slate. Sunday has a few afternoon games on the docket but my focus will be on the 6:00 pm eastern tilt between the L.A. Kings and the New York Rangers as well as the Chicago Blackhawks visiting the Winnipeg Jets which is set to start at 7:00 eastern. Time to make your Sunday even better, time for some Ice Picks!
Los Angeles Kings (19-32-5) at New York Rangers (26-23-4)
The Rangers, who have been fairly impressive this season despite the fact they are in somewhat of a rebuild, will come into this one with a red-hot powerplay that has been clicking at a 40% rate over the last month and eight days, tops in the league by a wide margin. They draw the Kings who continue to struggle (2-11-1, with an average of 3.31 goals against since January 1st). The Kings will be playing the second of a back-to-back after dropping a 3-0 decision to the Devils last night.
The trio of Chris Kreider, Mika Zibanejad and Pavel Buchnevich is absolutely scorching right now. Buchnevich is the least expensive of the three, in his last six games, he is averaging a point a contest which includes four snipes(goals).
As for Kreider and Zibanejad, both are lighting it up. Kreider despite being involved in plenty of trade rumors, has produced 14 G and 11 A in his last 24 games. Zibanejad is averaging 1.33 pts per game spaned over the last 12 games, including six goals. Both Kreider and Zibanejad are key elements to this highly efficient powerplay.
Chicago Blackhawks (25-21-8) at Winnipeg Jets (27-23-5)
Here we have two clubs in the middle of both offensive and defensive statistical team leaderboards. The Hawks average an 18th best 2.93 goals per game while the Jets boast a 2.91 goals per game rate. Defensively the teams are ranked 15th and 16th respectively. Heading into Saturday’s action both teams owned a goals-against-average of 3.04.
My slight edge is on the Hawks as they are simply playing better of late. Chicago is 7-4-2 scoring 3.23 goals per contest and allowing 2.77 against since the 1st of January.
The Jets, who are coming off a home victory against Ottawa yesterday afternoon, will be fighting for their playoff lives(much like CHI). Since January 1st, they are 5-8-2, with an average of just 2.47 goals per game and a goals-against of 3.20 (yesterday not included).
Although my lineup(s) will include one or two Jets, let’s highlight some Hawk players who profile well. Patrick Kane has put up respectable numbers in three games versus the Jets this season with a goal and four assists. As for his last 10 games, just a single goal but he does have 10 assists and 39 shots. His price, as of Saturday on DraftKings, is a very affordable 6.8 K.
How about Kirby Dach. There is a lot of buzz surrounding the rookie prospect and the Hawks are rewarding him for some good production as of late. Dach is currently getting first line looks on the powerplay. He has a modest goal and five assists in his last five games. A lot to like with Dach as he will get prime time minutes alongside Kane on both five-on-five situations as well as with the man advantage.
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