Monday NHL Quick Picks: Feb. 18

By Daniel J.

As the NBA spends one more day with teams traveling from Houston to their Tuesday game destinations, the NHL will take center stage, or rather center ice, today. There are seven games on tap for today and a couple of them would definitely fall into the premier category, at least for early season games. So, check out our quick picks for each contest and get all the hockey action in you can before the NBA returns tomorrow.

Ottawa Senators +1.5 at New Jersey Devils -1.5

Both squads enter today’s clash with winning records, but the Devils have home ice and have had a significant advantage in recent meetings, winning eight of their last nine against Ottawa. However, Ottawa is bringing in one of the best defensive squads in the league (1.93 goals allowed per game) and should keep this game close, if not win outright. Take Ottawa to cover +1.5.

Philadelphia Flyers +1.5 at New York Islanders -1.5

It’s been tough sledding, or rather tough skating, for the Flyers so far this season, but it should get a little easier as they visit the Islanders, who are just 2-5-0 at home this season. Considering the Flyers are also 28-3-1 against the Islanders since the beginning of the 2007-08 season, I like Philly to cover +1.5 today.

Nashville Predators -1.5 at Colorado Avalanche +1.5

The Predators have managed a winning 7-3-5 record while ranking worst in the league in scoring (1.87 goals per game). However, their defense has carried them through and they should be able to score more against the Avs, who give up nearly three goals per contest. Look for Nashville to get it done on the road and cover -1.5 today.

Carolina Hurricanes +1.5 at Montreal Canadiens -1.5

In the highest profile match-up of the day, the Canadiens will host the Hurricanes. Montreal comes in as winners of their last three, but the Hurricanes been stellar on the road, going 5-2-1 on the season. Look for Carolina to compete and at least keep things close by covering +1.5 today.

Toronto Maple Leafs -1.5 at Florida Panthers +1.5 

Not only have the Leafs gotten off to a nice 9-6-0 start this season, but they have also be great on the road with a 6-2-0 record this season. With the Panthers giving up nearly four goals per game, the Leafs should be able to take advantage and cover -1.5 today.

Calgary Flames +1.5 at Phoenix Coyotes -1.5

The Flames have been able to win to despite inconsistency at the goaltender position and luckily they’ll be playing a team that is allowing more goals than it is scoring this season. However, like the Flames, the Coyotes have managed to get off to a decent start. This game will likely be close, so favor Calgary at +1.5.

Columbus Blue Jackets +1.5 at Anaheim Ducks -1.5

In the biggest mismatch of the day, the Blue Jackets – who own the NHL’s worst record (4-9-2) – will go on the road to take on the Anaheim Ducks – who own the league’s second best record (11-2-1).  Considering the wealth of young goal scorers and versatile defenders, the Ducks should have no trouble here. Take Anaheim to cover -1.5.