By W.G. Ramirez
Is there anyone else enjoying this 5-0 run with our totals in Vegas Golden Knights games?
In the voice of T-Mobile Arena press box announcer Doug Marsh: “That’s Five, and Oh!”
Tonight the Golden Knights (8-10-1) welcome the Blues and former Vegas forward David Perron, who had a career year last season but returned to St. Louis via free agency during the off-season. Perron and the Blues (6-7-3) just beat the Golden Knights, 5-3, on Nov. 1.
But Vegas is in riding high after a 5-0 win over Anaheim on Wednesday, while the Blues arrive in Sin City after a disappointing 1-0 loss to Chicago. The consolation for the Blues, they’re 3-1-0 so far this season against the Pacific Division, while the Golden Knights are 1-2-0 against the Central Division
As of Noon pacific, the Golden Knights are laying -150. And remember, anytime you’re considering playing a favorite that is laying -160 or higher, the question is always whether or not there is value in the puck line.
Value in the Knights
The Golden Knights’ five goals on Wednesday came from unlikely suspects, as Cody Eakin netted two, Tomas Hyka scored his first of the season, Alex Tuch also got in on the action and there was an own goal by the Ducks, which was credited to Nick Holden. Vegas’ struggling second line seemed to be running fine with Eakin, Tuch and Max Pacioretty, who had two assists.
If that consistency can continue, along with the production we’ve seen from top-liners William Karlsson, Jonathan Marchessault and Reilly Smith, not to mention the surprising fourth line of Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, William Carrier and Ryan Reaves, the Knights could have another big offensive showing, this time against a team that has lost two straight and will play its second road game in three nights.
Value in the Blues
Who knows what it is about Vegas, but the Blues have earned points in all four of their games against the Golden Knights since the start of last season, going 2-0-2. St. Louis lost both games in Vegas in overtime last season. The Blues’ potent offense ranks 11th in the NHL with 3.25 goals per game this season, and they have the fifth-best power play in the league, converting at a 27.1 percent rate.
The Blues also lead the NHL with a 55.5 percent team faceoff win-percentage, while their 16 power play goals this season share seventh the NHL. These are the type of hustle stats and little intangibles that make underdogs valuable, and help out when on the road against fast-paced teams.
Five straight totals have cashed in from our Betting Spotlight, as we last told you to play the Under in the game against Anaheim. Tonight, with St. Louis in after being shutout, and Vegas in after goalie Marc-Andre Fleury shut out the Ducks, we’re looking at the Over. The Golden Knights haven’t played back-to-back home games since Oct. 28. It is Friday night, in Las Vegas, at the most electrifying NHL arena, and the Golden Knights appeared to have found their offense after scoring four or more goals in three of their last four games.
As already mentioned, St. Louis has the 11th-highest goals-for average in the NHL with 3.25 per game. The Blues have been hit or miss with their totals this season, going Over in four straight to start the season, then going on runs of three Unders, five Overs in a row and now four straight Unders. With Vegas feeling sassy of late, and the Blues looking to turn things around offensively, it’s time they get back on an Over run. Play this one high, as they eclipse 5 1/2 goals.
W.G. Ramirez is a freelance reporter in Las Vegas who covers the Vegas Golden Knights for The Associated Press. Follow him on Twitter at @WillieGRamirez