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The Los Angeles Kings will host the Nashville Predators in a Western Conference clash Thursday night from the Staples Center. The Predators are coming off a 3-2 road loss to the Ducks, and the Kings tallied a 3-2 road win over the Ducks in their previous meeting. The Predators have defeated the Kings in both meetings this season.
Predators Open Road Trip with Loss
The Nashville Predators will continue a three-game road trip in this contest. They opened their road trip with a 3-2 road loss to the Ducks on Tuesday night. Nashville now holds a 17-14-3-1 road record on the season. Filip Forsberg posted a two-goal performance in the losing cause on Tuesday night. The 24-year old center has netted three goals in his last three games, and he is up to 24 goals and 19 assists on the season.
Predators’ point leader Ryan Johansen recorded his 45th assist of the season in Tuesday’s loss. The seven-year veteran center has collected three points on the month, and he has 56 points on the year. Johansen is pointless in two games against the Kings this season.
"We have to show more speed, more desperation, and it's a situation in the season where we have a lot of things in our own hands, and considering that, it's disappointing."https://t.co/Yfy1cNJLKn
— Nashville Predators (@PredsNHL) March 13, 2019
The Predators are expected to send Pekka Rinne between the pipes in this one. The veteran goalkeeper hasn’t been quite as sharp recently, and he is carrying a 2.54 GAA and a .912 save percentage accompanied with a 24-18-3 record. Nashville holds a 5-5 record in their last 10 games, and they are averaging 2.9 goals on the season, ranking them 17th in the NHL. The Predators are holding opponents to an average of 2.7 goals, good for fifth in the NHL.
Kings Snap Slide in Win Against Ducks
The Los Angeles Kings will open a five-game homestand in this contest. The Kings own a 13-17-2-1 home record on the season. L.A. enters this one on a winning note after collecting a 3-2 road win over the Ducks in their latest game on Sunday night. Dustin Brown found the back of the net for his 17th goal of the season in the winning effort. The 14-year veteran right-winger has recorded four points on the month, and he is up to 17 goals and 22 assists on the season.
Kings’ point leader Anze Kopitar is stuck in a scoring slump, going four consecutive games without recording a point. The 31-year old center has tallied 19 goals and 29 assists on the season. Kopitar has a goal and an assist in two games against the Predators this season.
It was a quick weekend road trip, but the LA Kings a returning home with 2 more points and big win against their rivals in Anaheim. pic.twitter.com/jXsPidyG4M
— LA Kings (@LAKings) March 11, 2019
The Kings will likely send Jonathan Quick to the crease in this contest. The veteran goalie isn’t having a strong season for his standards, recording a 3.28 GAA and an .891 save percentage paired with a 13-19-6 record. L.A. is scoring an average of 2.3 goals, ranking them down at 30th in the NHL. The Kings are allowing an average of 3.2 goals. pegging them 22nd overall.
The Los Angeles Kings are:
- 3-13 in their last 16 games overall.
- 1-6 in their last 7 home games.
- 2-12 in their last 14 games as an underdog.
The Nashville Predators are:
- 5-0 in their last 5 games against the Kings.
- 4-1 in their last 5 games when playing on one day of rest.
- over is 6-2 in their last 8 games as a road favorite.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
I am taking the Predators on the puck line (-1.5) in this matchup for added value on the line. The Kings have lost three out of their last four games, and they continue to have trouble finding the back of the net, averaging only 2.1 goals in their last ten games.
Furthermore, the Predators are back on track offensively, netting at least three goals in four out of their last five games. The Kings’ last three losses have occurred by at least two goals, and I am confident Nashville can take this one by at least two goals as well.
Prediction: Nashville Predators -1.5
Full-Game Total Pick
I expect some offense from both sides. The Kings continue to squander a ton of goals, allowing an average of 3.8 goals in their last 10 games, and the over is 15-6 in their last 21 games overall.
In addition, the Predators haven’t been nearly as sharp defensively recently, allowing a combined 12 goals in their last three games. The over is 9-3-1 in the Kings last 12 home games against the Predators, and that trend should resume in this one.
Full-Game Prop Bet
I expect Nashville to have a strong night offensively. Nashville has scored a combined seven goals in two games against the Kings this season. Also, opponents are consistently scoring against the Kings as they have allowed at least three goals in eight out of their last nine games overall.
Prediction: Nashville Team Total: Over
Half-Time Total Bet
I am opting with the under on the first period total. Both teams lowest scoring period takes place in the opening period. Nashville has only scored 46 goals in the first period, while only conceding 56 goals, and the Kings have only netted 45 goals in the first frame this season.
Prediction: First Period Total: Under