NHL Predictions January 19: Calgary battles to stay on top in the Pacific

As we enter the middle of January, the NHL season is past the midway point. Numerous interesting match ups are on tap for Friday, January 19. Can the Calgary Flames keep hold of the top spot in the Pacific Division? Their game against the Red Wings is featured. Note that all information is for games played through January 15.

Calgary Flames versus Detroit Red Wings

Calgary has won five straight and have a narrow lead on San Jose in the Pacific Division. The Flames are 8-1-1 over their last ten and are “burning hot” on the Team Strength Oscillator. The Red Wings have won two straight and are at +6 on the Power Ranking Indicator compared to +28 for Calgary. The Flames won the last meeting between the teams just two weeks ago by a 5-3 score as a road favorite.  Calgary is 15-4-4 at home and both teams are relatively stable, meaning the perform generally as their favorite/underdog status indicates. Calgary will win this one by a couple of goals to stay on top in the division.

Toronto Maple Leafs versus Florida Panthers

Toronto is second in the Atlantic Division, while Florida is second from the bottom. Neither team is trending well lately. The Panthers have lost seven straight and are “dead” on the Team Strength Oscillator.  The Maple Leafs are just 5-5 over their last ten and are “ice cold down”. The is a decided advantage (+20 to +3) for the Maple Leafs on the Power Ranking Indicator. Neither team is among the most stable in the league, so use caution when looking at favorite/underdog status. The teams have split the meetings so far this season.  Florida has a winning record at home but Toronto is an excellent 15-5-1 on the road. The are the better team and will take down the Panthers.

New York Islanders versus Washington Capitals

The second and third place teams in the Metropolitan Division face off in this one. The teams area heading in opposite directions. New York is 8-2 over their last ten and “burning hot”, while Washington has lost their last three and are “average down”. The Capitals still hold a slight edge on the Power Ranking Indicator and won the first game between the teams by a 4-1 score as a road favorite. Washington is one of the most stable teams in the NHL and are 13-7-3 at home. They will be the favorite and should win by a goal or two.

Pittsburgh Penguins versus Arizona Coyotes

Pittsburgh enters just three points out in their division, while the Coyotes are second from the bottom in the Pacific. The Penguins won the first meeting this season by a 4-0 score as a home favorite. Although Pittsburgh is 7-3 over their last ten, they have dropped two straight and are “average down” on the Team Strength Oscillator. Arizona is also “average down”, going 5-4-1 over their last ten. Neither team is showing much stability according to the Team Volatility Oscillator, so pay little attention to favorite/underdog status in this one. Pittsburgh is above .500 on the road and Arizona is one of the worst home teams. Go with the Penguins in a game they take over in the third period.

Buffalo Sabres versus Vancouver Canucks

Buffalo is in the middle of the pack in the Atlantic Division, but are just 3-6-1 over their last ten. They are +14 on the Power Ranking Indicator and “ice cold down”. The Canucks are 5-4-1 over their last ten, +8 and “ice cold up”. The Sabres won the first meeting by the score of 4-3 as a home favorite. Buffalo is the more stable team and will likely be a slight road underdog. They are 9-11-3 on the road and the Canucks are 10-9-2 at home. In a tight game, look for the Canucks to win by a goal, perhaps decided in overtime.

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