Saturday brings us NHL betting action all day, starting at 1 pm EST with the New Jersey Devils and Boston Bruins, and finishing with a pair of West Coast games at 10 pm EST.
This is the first weekend of the 2021 season, with many teams playing back-to-back or on short rest thanks to the condensed schedule. Watch out for recency bias and keep an eye out for teams starting backup goalies.
We’re loving some more fireworks from the North Division and digging in with a pair of plus-money dogs.
With over 11 hours of frozen action, Saturday is going to be packed for hockey bettors. We break down the odds and bring you our best NHL picks and predictions for Saturday, January 16.
NHL Picks for Today
We wouldn’t be doing this article justice if we made you wait around. We want to watch hockey as early as possible and at 1 pm EST, it's a perfect time to play some puck.
The Bruins and Devils played to a 3-2 Boston shootout win Thursday night that saw just one goal scored through the game’s first 40 minutes. Taking a deeper dig into the shot volume and quality reveals a game that could have easily hit the Over 5.5.
Firstly, each team drew five penalties, which is higher than the league average. Boston potted two with the man advantage, as they usually do, but the Devils went 0-for-5 on the powerplay despite a handful of quality scoring chances.
The Bruins also failed to capitalize on their chances, as they scored on just two of their 17 high-danger chances. The Devils created 17 high-danger opportunities themselves, which were the 5th-most created by any team in their opening game.
Boston will start goalie Jaroslav Halak for the matinee. The Boston backup hit the Over in 11 of his 19 road games last year, as the Bruins offered him 3.35 goals of support per game which was higher than their season average.
We’ve got a thing for afternoon goals and with the way New Jersey goalie Mac Blackwood played Thursday, we have no problem riding the tasty Devils ML as well.
PREDICTION: Over 5.5 -110 and NJD ML (+160)
The Montreal Canadiens are coming off a 5-4 OT loss to the Leafs on Wednesday that saw them give up a whopping 48 quality scoring chances. Goalie Carey Price didn’t have much help on the back-end, but the offense looked dominant at times as this Canadiens team can play the forecheck game and push the pace with their speed.
Montreal’s powerplay scored twice in four tries, while its penalty kill surrendered a pair as well. The Canadiens took five straight penalties in the second period against the Leafs, and versus Connor McDavid and the Oilers, that could be a great recipe for the Over.
The Oilers have hit the Over in both their games this year and have cashed it with ease. A combination of high-end scoring, a filthy powerplay and poor net-minding has Edmonton as the perfect Over team yet again.
The North Division has been a gold mine for Overs (4-0 O/U heading into Friday) and we expect that trend to continue Saturday night. Even at 6.5, we have some faith that both teams can score three goals.
PREDICTION: Over 6.5 (-105)
The Canucks generated 84 shots on net in Thursday’s 5-2 loss, one day after netting five goals in the opener. They will also be facing a familiar opponent as former Vancouver goalie Jacob Markstrom is now the starter in Calgary. The edge has to go to the shooters in a battle of former teammates.
The Canucks will likely start goalie Braden Holtby, who held Connor McDavid to zero points in a 5-3 win on Wednesday. Vancouver has taken three of the last five games in Edmonton, and at +120, we’re liking the away team.
We’re also riding the Over 6 as neither has shown an ability to keep pucks out of the net through the first few games of the 2021 season. Both clubs have also taken plenty of early-season penalties, which is a big help when we’re hunting for goals.
PREDICTION: Vancouver ML (+120) and Over 6 (-120)
Top NHL Consensus for Today
Want to know who today's biggest NHL betting and consensus bets are right now? Check out our top NHL consensus picks.
Yesterday's picks: 0-2 (-2.0 units)
Season record to date: 4-4 (+0.31 units)
NHL Betting Card for January 16
- BOS-NJD Over 5.5 (-110) and NJD ML (+160)
- MTL-EDM Over 6.5 (-105)
- Vancouver ML (+120) and VAN-CAL Over 6 (-120)
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Where Can I Bet on the NHL?
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