Welcome back to NHL Game Day Predictions. Daily, Last Word on Hockey brings you a prediction and analysis of every game on the schedule. This will also feature a significant game on the schedule that is must-watch hockey. Today’s NHL Predictions featured game is the Pittsburgh Penguins vs the Dallas Stars. Be sure to check out the early games NHL predictions to stay informed. Check out NHL Predictions for the early games as well to stay informed.
*All statistics mentioned are as of 10-25-19
Pittsburgh Penguins vs Dallas Stars
Head-to-Head: Pittsburgh 1 – 0 Dallas
These two clubs just met on October 18th with the Pittsburgh Penguins coming out on top 4-2. The Pens have caught the injury bug and have lost three straight games after starting with a 6-2 record. Not having instrumental players like Evgeni Malkin, Alex Galchenyuk, Nick Bjugstad, and Bryan Rust can really hurt your team’s success rate. All four players are on the injured reserve and the Pens are feeling it. The Pittsburgh group has only scored four goals while giving up 10 in their current three-game losing streak.
Sidney Crosby has been held to just two assists during the losing streak, and he can only do so much with a partial team playing. It may not be an easy game for the Pens seeing how the Stars have begun to put things together of late.
After starting the season at 1-7-1 the Dallas Stars are finally waking up and have put together a three-game winning streak. So, it then becomes will the Stars continue their winning ways, or will the Pens break their losing trend? With only three goals between their two star scorers, Jamie Benn, and Tyler Seguin the Stars need to start looking like the powerhouse offensive machine they were last season. Especially if they want to beat Crosby and company.
Prediction: Stars win 4-2.
Los Angeles Kings vs Minnesota Wild
Head-to-Head: Los Angeles 0 – 0 Minnesota
This is the first matchup of these two teams who are both presently struggling to win hockey games. While the Los Angeles Kings have played a little better lately, they still rank 29th in both goals scored and goals allowed. They have received some offensive contributions from their usual scorers with Anze Kopitar, Ilya Kovalchuk, and Drew Doughty combining for 10 goals in their first ten contests.
The biggest problem for the Kings is their weak defence. Between Jonathan Quick and Jack Campbell, they have combined for a 3.74 goals-against average while teaming up for a weak .870 save percentage.
The Minnesota Wild have not impressed anyone this 2019-20 campaign. The Wild fans may have been in shock to see their team display such ineptness to start the season. They began the 2019-20 year with a 1-6 record with a lone win sandwiched in between a four-game and a two-game losing streaks. Since then the Wild have tried to go in the right direction with two wins in their last three games. Still, they have a ways to go to improve.
Prediction: Wild win 5-3
Anaheim Ducks vs Colorado Avalanche
Head-to-Head: Anaheim 0 – 0 Colorado
The Anaheim Ducks were one of the big surprises of the new season. They started out with a very respectable 6-2 record, only to go into a tailspin with three straight losses. Jakob Silfverberg and Richard Rakell lead the Ducks with eight goals and 15 points between them. The Anaheim club is stingy on defence as they are ninth in goals allowed in the NHL. In fact, John Gibson and Ryan Miller have been tough to score against. Their combined .926 save percentage and 2.21 goals against is enviable. They just need to score more.
The Colorado Avalanche must be one of if not the most exciting young teams to watch this season. They started like gangbusters with a 7-1-1 record and they had not lost in regulation until their loss to the Stanley Cup champs St. Louis Blues on October 21st. With a lineup including Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog and Mikko Rantanen how can you miss? Losing Rantenan to injury being week-to-week won’t help them. Yet, they are still loaded and won’t be easy to beat at home where they are 4-0.
Prediction: Avalanche win 4-1
Calgary Flames vs Winnipeg Jets
Head-to-Head Calgary 0-0 Winnipeg
The Calgary Flames are very inconsistent thus far this new season. With a 6-5-1 record, they just can’t put wins together. Here’s the breakdown of their 12 games so far. L,W,L,W,L,L,W,W,L,W,L,W. They just seem to be stuck in playing .500 hockey and that is not how they played last season. If they are true to form, the next game should be a loss. This team has some offensive firepower with Matthew Tkachuk earning his new contract. Johnny Gaudreau has done his usual job of playing great. The Flames just need to tighten up defensively to improve.
The Winnipeg Jets are by far the dichotomy of what they were last year. One improvement has been the play of Patrik Laine. After a long holdout and trade rumours flying like kites on a windy day, Laine has stepped up his game this season. Last year after 11 games he only had three goals and two assists. This season he has three goals and nine assists to show he’s trying to be more of a playmaker than a scorer. But, is he more valuable as a scorer? We’ll find out as the season plays out. This game will be played outdoors in Regina so look to see how that affects things too.
Prediction: Jets win 4-3