Posted: 9/9/2012 6:50:08 AM
Black wings Linz -2 -118 vs Olimpija Ljubljana 2 units
Linz are last years champions with practically the same team that dominated this league throughout the season. They've played really well in the preseason, but couldn't win their home opener vs KAC Klagenfurt (1:2 loss), who are always one of the top 3 teams in the league, so that loss is nothing alarming. Now they face Olimpija who is really weak (I already wrote a little about them in the 1st post), especially on the road and Linz should take this one easy.
VSV Villach regulation ML +148 @ Graz 99ers 1.5 units
Villach made a statement in their first game at Dornbirn (6:0 win) that they are not gonna fail like they did last year (not even making the playoffs). Their team is rejuvenated with new coach and new players with better motivation so their preseason good form should continue today. Graz is never a powerhouse in this league, their budget doesn't allow them high profile foreign players and their own farm system rarely produces extra quality players so they mostly end up as a middle of the pack. This year isn't different, they did manage to win the first away game at Innsbruck, but Villach this year looks like a top team and I predict a win for them.
KAC Klagenfurt regulation ML +122 @ Orli Znojmo 1.5 units
Klagenfurt are the oldest team in Austria, with most titles, big budget and excellent farm system. Nothing short of the title will satisfy them and their season started in style winning 2:1 at champions Linz in a rerun of last years finals. Znojmo are a decent team, but their lack of funds led them from Czech Extraliga just a few years ago to Czech minor league and last year they joined EBEL. Mostly playing wih their own young players and a few foreign reinforcements that their small budget cann afford, they will play well most of the times and score an occasional win here and there (like a sensational 3:1 win at Red Bull Salzburg in 1st round), but when facing a more experienced, stronger and motivated time like Klagenfurt, they usually fall short.
Innsbruck -1 +103 vs Dornbirn 1 unit
Innsbruck returned to EBEL after a 3 year absence due to financial troubles. They lost their home opener to Graz 2:3, but played OK. Dornbirn (a rookie in this league after promoting from minor league) on the other hand got thrashed at home to Villach and by all reports, they are by far the weakest of all austrian teams, maybe even weaker than most non-austrian. I expect very hard times for them in their first year in EBEL and even though Innsbruck are not anything special, they should win their 1st game today.