Los Angeles Kings at Nashville Predators Odds - Free Pick 2/20/2016
Two teams battling for playoff position in their respective divisions will battle it out against one another this Saturday night when the Los Angeles Kings invade Bridgestone Area to face the Nashville Predators. Game time is set for 8 p.m. (ET) and it will be available on NHL Center Ice.
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The Kings still hold a two-point lead over Anaheim for first place in the Pacific Division, but they have dropped three games in a row to fall to 4-5-1 in their last 10 outings. This past Thursday, they lost to St. Louis 2-1 in overtime as +104 road underdogs and the total has now stayed UNDER in their last three games. Los Angeles is 33-20-4 (70 points) on the year with an 18-10-3 record on the road. It has now lost four of the first six games on this current seven-game road trip.
Los Angeles has only managed to score a total of two goals during this three game slide. To make matters worse, its leading scorer Anze Kopitar left Thursday's game in the first period with a lower body injury and he remains questionable for Saturday night. The only bright spot over the last three games has been a defensive effort that has only allowed a total of six goals. Johnathan Quick has gotten the start in goal the past two games and he turned away 94 percent of the shots he faced.
Nashville notched a key 2-0 shutout against Boston on Thursday as a -128 home favorite, but it was just its third victory in its last eight games. The total has stayed UNDER in its last two games after going OVER in four of the previous five contests. The Predators are currently tied with Colorado for fourth place in the Central Division with a total of 64 points. They have gone 27-21-10 overall with a 15-10-4 record on their home ice.
Craig Smith and Filip Forsberg combined for two first period goals in Thursday's win and that is all the scoring it took to get past the Bruins with Pekka Rinne pitching a shutout in goal by turning away 29 shots. This was his first start in Nashville's last three games after he got shelled for nine goals in losses to Washington and Tampa Bay earlier this month. The Predators are averaging 2.6 goals a game and they are allowing 2.6 goals on the other end of the ice.
The Kings are 1-4 in their last five road games and they are 1-5 in their last six games against a team from the Central Division. The total has stayed UNDER in six of their last eight Central Division games.
The Predators are 4-0 in their last four Pacific Division games, but they are just 2-5 in their last seven games at home. The total has gone OVER or ended as a PUSH in eight of their last nine Saturday games.
Head-to-head in this conference clash, Nashville has a 5-1 edge in the last six meetings and the total has gone OVER in four of those games. The Kings won the first meeting this season 4-3 in overtime on Oct. 31 as -135 home favorites.
Los Angeles Kings at Nashville Predators Prediction
Both of these teams have had some issues lighting the lamp lately and both of their star goalies looked sharp their last time out. I would lean towards Nashville getting the win at home against the road weary Kings, but my "best bet" pick for this matchup is the UNDER on the total line.