Free NHL Bets and Picks: Coyotes on the Hunt for First Win

Boston Bruins at Arizona Coyotes

For the second straight Saturday, most of the NHL teams are playing a game. This Saturday twenty-eight of the thirty-one franchises are meeting. The Vegas Golden Knights, Detroit Red Wings and Anaheim Ducks are the only teams without a game. Here are my free NHL bets and picks for October 14, with the lines and odds from BetOnline.

Boston Bruins (-130) at Arizona Coyotes (+118)

Boston Bruins at Arizona CoyotesThe start to the NHL season has not been treating Arizona or Boston well. The Bruins have started with a 1-2 record, while the Coyotes have done worse, starting out 0-3-1. The Coyotes will be looking for their first win of the season in Arizona, while Boston hopes to get back on track after losing back-to-back games to the Avalanche.

After winning the season opener against Nashville 4-3, the Bruins played a home-and-home matchup against last season’s worst team, the Colorado Avalanche. In the two meetings the Bruins lost twice by a total score of 10-3. In all three games the Bruins have been close to equal in shots, they were outshot 86-84.

Boston has not had elite goaltending from Tuukka Rask like they need from him. Rask has put up a .870 save percentage and a 3.75 GAA. Rask was pulled from the last matchup against Colorado. Backup goaltender Anton Khudobin stopped all nine shots he faced.

Even though the Coyotes have been within one goal of three of their four losses, not counting empty net goals, Arizona has not been able to win. The Coyotes have met up against Anaheim, Detroit and Vegas twice. All three teams have been solid to start the season.

The Coyotes have been outscored 16-9 to start the season. Although the Coyotes have only scored nine goals, fourteen players have been able to get a point for the Coyotes.

The Coyotes have also been led by their young players. Max Domi and rookie Clayton Keller lead the team in points. Young players like Duclair, Dvorak, Fischer and Perlini have all registered a point early in the season.

Boston has been doing poorly on special teams this season. The Bruins have a 15.38 power play percentage and a 76.92 penalty kill percentage. Both the Bruins powerplay and penalty kill percentages are lower than the league average. On the other side, Arizona has an 18.75 power play percentage and an 85.71 penalty kill percentage. Both are above the league average.

If the Coyotes young players can continue to step up, I believe Arizona gets its first win of the season. The Coyotes have been a better team on special teams to start the year and have shown early they can at least compete. I predict the Coyotes to compete all game and get the win in the end.

St. Louis Blues (+134) at Tampa Bay Lightning (-148)

Tampa Bay and St. Louis have both been strong teams to start the season. Tampa Bay has a 3-1 record, while St. Louis sits at 4-1. Tampa Bay and St. Louis met twice last season and split the season series at one apiece.

Both teams have been outshot to start the season. Tampa Bay has a negative twenty-one shot differential, while St. Louis has a negative thirty-four. This leads into the fact that the Lightning have allowed plenty of goals, but have scored a lot on their own. As for the Blues, they have had good goaltending to keep them in games.

Tampa Bay has put the puck in the net 18 times on 129 shots, leading to a shooting percentage of fourteen percent. St. Louis has scored 16 times on 152 shots, which gives them a 10.5 percent shooting.

Tampa Bay has put up a .900 save percentage and a 3.75 GAA (Andrei Vasilevskiy has played all four games). The Blues have posted a .925 save percentage with a GAA of 2.75 (Jake Allen has played four games; Carter Hutton has played one).

St. Louis enters this game after their first loss on the season in Florida, against the Panthers. To start the season the Blues beat the Penguins, Islanders and Rangers on the road, winning at home against the Stars. St. Louis is battling the injury bug right now with Steen, Bouwmeester, Berglund and Fabbri out of their lineup.

Tampa Bay enters the game after back-to-back impressive victories at home against the Capitals and Penguins. The Lightnings only loss came on the road against the Panthers, right after beating Florida in Tampa Bay. The Lightning have suffered big injuries in the past, but are mostly healthy to start the season.

In a classic battle between offense vs. defense, I believe the Tampa Bay’s offense will prevail. The Lightning are playing great at home and have proven they can put the puck in the back of the net even against the best of goalies. St. Louis could put up a struggle, but I am not sure the Blues can match the Lightnings firepower.

Lukasz Soze

Lukasz was born in Las Vegas, the center of US sports betting. He is a sports aficionado with great insight into motorsports like F1 and MotoGP as well as NHL hockey.

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