Penguins vs Golden Knights Picks and Predictions: Pens Are Money in Vegas

The Pittsburgh Penguins are almost fully healthy thanks to Evgeni Malkin's return last week and land in Vegas against a Golden Knights squad with a depleted defensive unit. We like the Pens to come away with the moneyline victory in our NHL betting picks.

Last Updated: Jan 17, 2022 11:22 AM ET Read Time: 4 min
Evgeni Malkin Pittsburgh Penguins NHL
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Penguins continue their Western Conference road trip as they head to T-Mobile Arena to face off against the Vegas Golden Knights.

Oddsmakers are expecting a close contest with NHL betting lines opening with this game as a pick'em with the Over/Under at 6.

Here are our best free NHL betting picks and predictions for Penguins vs. Golden Knights on Monday, January 17, with the puck dropping at 10 p.m. ET. 

Penguins vs Golden Knights odds

Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.

This line opened as a pick'em with the Over/Under at 6 and as of 11 a.m. ET, it has not seen any movement. The last time these teams faced off was two years ago when the Penguins won 4-3 as +154 road underdogs.

Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right until puck drop and be sure to check out the full NHL odds before betting to ensure you get the best number.

Penguins vs Golden Knights predictions

Predictions made on 1/17/2022 at 11 a.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.

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Penguins vs Golden Knights game info

Location: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, NV
Date: Monday, January 17, 2022
Puck drop: 10:00 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN+

Penguins vs Golden Knights betting preview

Injuries

Penguins: Jason Zucker LW (Out), Zach Aston-Reese LW (Out), Danton Heinen LW (Out), Casey DeSmith G (Out).
Golden Knights: Nicolas Roy C (Out), Shea Theodore D (Out), Max Pacioretty LW (Out), Alec Martinez D (Out), Laurent Brossoit G (Questionable), Nolan Patrick C (Out), Nicolas Hague D (Out), William Carrier LW (Questionable), Jack Eichel C (Out).
Find our latest NHL injury reports.

Penguins vs Golden Knights head-to-head record

Penguins: 2-2, 11 goals for.
Golden Knights: 2-2, 15 goals for.

Betting trend to know

 The Penguins are 17-5 in their last 22 overall. Find more NHL betting trends for Penguins vs. Golden Knights.

Penguins vs Golden Knights picks and predictions

Our predictions are compiled from the analysis of the spread and total and are indications of where we are leaning for this game.
Our best bet is the play that we like the most for this game, which we would actually put some of our bankroll behind.

The Penguins are coming off a 2-1 overtime win over San Jose on Saturday, which allowed them to bounce back from a 6-2 loss to the Kings the night before. Pittsburgh is still a sizzling 12-2 in its last 14 games and will be happy to head back home after this contest following a five-game Western Conference road trip. 

Vegas hasn't played since a 4-3 shootout loss to the Maple Leafs last Tuesday and has lost four of its last five games despite having home-ice advantage in all of those contests. The Knights still have the third-best odds of winning the Stanley Cup despite sitting 11th in the NHL in point percentage (.615), two spots behind the Pens, who are at .662. 

A big reason why the Knights have regressed from the last few seasons has been their play in their own end of the ice. They are 29th in the league in high danger chances allowed per 60 minutes (12.56) and goaltender Robin Lehner has been average at best, posting just 3.2 goals saved above expected in 27 games. 

The Penguins have been stingy in their own end, ranking ninth in HDCA/60, while goalie Tristan Jarry is sixth in the league with 15.3 GSAx in 29 starts. 

The Knights are also missing several key pieces in Max Pacioretty, Nicolas Roy, Shea Theodore, Nicolas Hague, and Alec Martinez. Pacioretty has been the team's most talented goal scorer while Roy has been the focal point of Vegas' third line, even outplaying struggling first-line center William Karlsson. 

The biggest losses are on the blueline where Theodore anchors the powerplay and Hague and Martinez would normally round out one of the best units in the league. With all three out of action, that tests their depth and forces them to give Ben Hutton and Dylan Coghlan more ice time than is ideal.

That'll make it tough to slow down the Penguins, who rank ninth in the league in goals per 60 minutes at even strength and got star center Evgeni Malkin back from injury just last week. Take Pittsburgh on the moneyline.

Prediction: Penguins moneyline (-110)

While the Knights have enough forward depth to still put the puck in the net, their defense is more vulnerable due to their untimely injuries. This is a team that ranks fourth in the NHL with 3.43 goals per 60 minutes and sixth in high danger chances per 60 minutes (12.74). 

They'll need to put the pressure on Pittsburgh if they want to put the puck past the red-hot Jarry and they'll also need to make up for their own shaky play in net. Lehner is having a down year with a 2.91 GAA and save percentage of .905 in 27 games and the mistakes made in front of him haven't made things easier. 

With the Knights ranking among the highest-scoring teams in the league while taking a massive step back defensively, it shouldn't be a surprise that the Over is 19-9-2 in their last 30 games overall. Take the Over again tonight. 

Prediction: Over 6 (-115)

Over the last few years, it would have been heresy to fade the Knights at home, especially at a pick'em price. But this year's squad is barely above .500 at home, winning 12 of 23 contests at T-Mobile Arena, and is now hosting one of the hottest teams in the league.

The Pens might rank a modest 11th in the league with 3.17 GF/60 but that number is deflated by their injury woes from earlier in the season. Now, they have a more formidable group of skaters with Malkin joining a deep lineup that has seven players who have tallied at least 20 points this season. 

Sidney Crosby is doing his usual thing with 25 points in 25 games while Jake Guentzel leads the team in goals (19) and points (37), and Kris Letang is scoring at close to a point-per-game from the blueline. The Penguins offense (especially the powerplay) should only get better while Jarry has emerged as one of the best goalies in the league with a sizzling 2.05 GAA and a .929 SV%.

We'll put our money on the healthier team in better form with the superior goaltender. 

Pick: Penguins moneyline (-110)

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