NHL Sports Betting Advice
Analysing The 5 Best & Worst Offenses
By Angelo Montilla
Here are five of the top and five of the worst offensive teams a month into the NHL season.
1. New York Rangers
The Rangers have spread out the scoring with six different players potting seven or more goals. Leading that charge is Michael Grabner, who’s surprised a few people with his 10 goals through 17 games this season.
Another pleasant surprise for the Blue Shirts has been the revival of J.T. Miller, who leads the Rangers in scoring with 17 points in 17 games.
Miller is on pace to net a career best 33 goals and 81 points. Don’t expect this offensive surge to end either. What’s most impressive is the Rangers rank 18th in shots per game, meaning they’re converting on the chances they get. As +450 odds of coming out of the East, now is the time to bet on the Rangers.
2. Chicago Blackhawks
While No. 1 on this list comes as a surprise, the Blackhawks being mentioned as one of the best offensive teams in the league is totally expected.
The Hawks — among favorites at +500 to come out of the West — are once again one of the top scoring teams in the NHL. Patrick Kane, the reigning Hart Trophy winner as league MVP, is picking up from where he left off a year ago.
No. 88 leads all Hawks scorers with 18 points in 17 games played. Chicago forward Artemi Panarin, the 2015-16 rookie of the year, ranks 10th in the league in Corsi with a 65 rating.
3. Montreal Canadiens
With Carey Price between the pipes, the Montreal Canadiens can certainly keep the puck out of their own net. But the Habs have proved they can hang with the top offensive teams in the league as well.
Through 17 games, the Canadiens have netted 56 goals — good for third in the NHL. Having only allowed 38 during that span, Montreal’s +18 goal differential ranks second only behind the surging Rangers.
If the Habs can maintain that offensive production, the +1000 line being offered by BetOnline that Montreal will win the Cup doesn’t seem so far-fetched.
4. Tampa Bay Lightning
There’s a reason the Bolts paid big bucks to bring free-agent sniper Steven Stamkos back to Tampa Bay. Stamkos’ ability to score goals and create offense puts the Lightning among the top teams in the league.
The Rocket Richard recipient ranks ninth in shots on goal with 58 and that number will rise as the season progresses. Keep an eye on Nikita Kucherov, whose 4.38 points per 60-minute average ranks sixth in the NHL.
That is certainly translating to points as Kucherov leads the Bolts in scoring with 21 points. Tampa Bay netted a total of 227 goals last season. If you can find an over/under wager, take the over the Bolts will pass that mark this season.
5. Toronto Maple Leafs
The Leafs have had some trouble keeping the puck out of their own net, but for a rebuilding team, they rank among the best offensive clubs in the NHL.
In fact, the stats will back it up. Investing in quality hockey analytic professionals has paid off for the Leafs, who rank second in the league in shots per game at 32.8. Toronto’s 50 goals for this season puts them seventh in the league — hanging around with elite clubs such as the Rangers, Blackhawks and Lightning.
1. Vancouver Canucks
Most nights, it’s painful to watch the Vancouver Canucks. A team that came flying out of the gate with four straight wins, the Canucks everyone expected eventually came around.
You can’t score if you’re not shooting enough and that’s the case for the Canucks, whose 28.8 shots per game ranks among the NHL’s worst. That has translated to goal production — or lack thereof — for the Canucks, who have scored just 34 goals in 17 games played.
2. Washington Capitals
Unlike the Canucks, the Washington Capitals can actually fix their scoring woes. An early Stanley Cup contender, the Caps haven’t lived up to their scoring expectations.
While only producing 45 goals in 16 games, the Caps have been brilliant in their own zone, which has helped mask their offensive issues.
Perhaps the team’s biggest early season disappointment has been the play of centre Evgeny Kuznetsov, who has just two goals through 16 games. There’s still a lot of time for the Caps to figure out their scoring, so taking the +950 line the team will win the Cup is still a good wager.
3. San Jose Sharks
After reaching the Stanley Cup final last season, there were high expectations surrounding the San Jose Sharks.
While the club has still found a way to remain in playoff contention, their offensive production has taken a hit. The Sharks are averaging just 2.31 goals and 29.8 shots per game.
A bright spot to build on is defenseman Brent Burns’ ability to remain among the top players in shot attempts for, where he ranks seventh in the NHL with 294.
4. Los Angeles Kings
Another Pacific Division club struggling to find scoring, the Los Angeles Kings rank 26th in the NHL in goals per game with 2.29. It’s not for lack of trying as Los Angeles ranks fifth in shots per game. The Kings are always among the league leaders in shot attempt percentage — also known as Corsi.
Their 52.89 rating is good for fourth in the league. It’s still early enough for the 2014 Stanley Cup champions to shake out of this offensive funk.
5. Dallas Stars
The hockey world is still waiting for the Dallas Stars’ offense to break out. Just 17 games into the season, the Stars have produced 45 goals.
While that’s not terrible, keep in mind this is a club that led the entire league in goals for a year ago. Superstar winger Jamie Benn is off to a sluggish start with just four goals.
If the Stars want to make a serious run at a Stanley Cup, the club will also have to improve its 2.65 goals for per game average.
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