By W.G. Ramirez
The good news is, Knights On Ice improved to 7-1 with the Over/Unders involving the Golden Knights after delivering the Over.
As bad as things have been for Vegas, and for as well as Arizona has opened the campaign, the oddsmakers have a slight lean toward the Golden Knights, as they’re currently -115, as of 1 p.m. PT.
The Coyotes were 2-14-3 through 19 games a season ago; now they’re 9-9-1. Vegas was 15-6-1 through 22 games; now it is 9-12-1.
Both teams have 19 points, but the Coyotes have been the overall better team thus far this season.
Last season, Vegas won four of five from Arizona, two of the wins in overtime. Tonight will be another hard-fought battle, with both teams looking to distance itself from the other a bit.
Value in the Knights
One thing that we pointed out earlier this season was how the Golden Knights close out tours, before heading back to T-Mobile Arena. Vegas was 8-4-0 on the final game of a road trip of two games or more, including a 4-3-0 mark in the final games of a road trip that followed a loss. So, with the same passion that burned in Edmonton, it’s highly conceivable the Golden Knights come out swinging after being embarrassed in Calgary. With the team taking yesterday off, it may have helped settle any anxiety and got them with the right mindset for this crucial Pacific Division clash.
Value in the Coyotes
Arizona catches the Golden Knights playing their third game in four nights during a an even tougher stretch in which they’ll play five games over seven days. And with the Coyotes hungry to bounce back after a 2-1 loss to Boston and earning points in eight of their last 12 games (7-4-1), they’ll be looking to give the Thanksgiving crowd something to cheer for at Gila River Arena. And with Vegas struggling to score for a good part of the first quarter of the season, coupled with the Coyotes giving up the second-fewest goals in the league (48), their defensive ways could be the biggest value and key to a win tonight.
After playing the Golden Knights correctly Over the past two games, we’re going to switch things up and play tonight’s game Under the posted 5 1/2.
Let’s start by reiterating Arizona’s stifling ways. In allowing just 48 goals this season, the Coyotes have stymied teams to two goals or less in 13 of 19 games. And in eight of those 13 games, the Coyotes have allowed just one goal. They’ve never shut a team out, so don’t be surprised if that happens to the Golden Knights, who will be tired after playing in Edmonton on Sunday and Calgary on Monday. Vegas will welcome Marc-Andre Fleury back in the net, and he’s recorded two shutouts in his last seven starts, while sporting a 2.42 goals against average in those games. He has allowed two or fewer goals in eight of his 18 starts. The teams averaged 5.2 goals per game last season, and Vegas has stayed under in eight of its last 11 against Western Conference foes. Arizona has kept it low in four straight against Pacific Division opponents. Let’s play this one Under tonight.
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