Philadelphia Flyers at Pittsburgh Penguins Matchup

Jose VasquezArticles, Hockey, NHL

Squaring off for the fourth and final time this year, the Philadelphia Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins clash at PPG Paints Arena in a divisional matchup. NBC will showcase the matchup, and the puck drops at 0:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, March 25.

Philadelphia Flyers at Pittsburgh Penguins Odds

Philadelphia (+150) is entering this one as the underdog to Pittsburgh (-170) and the Over/Under (O/U) is set at 6 goals (-130 money on the over, +110 on the under).

Losing -2.9 units for moneyline bettors, Pittsburgh is 42-33 straight up (SU) overall thus far. That winning percentage, the second-best in the Metropolitan Division in this young season, is a regression from the 50-32 record that the team managed during last years regular season campaign. Of its 75 games this season, 42 have gone over the total, while 31 have gone under and just two have pushed. The teams 27-10 SU at home this year.

The Penguins enter the matchup with the second-strongest power-play unit in the NHL, as they have scored on 26.0 percent of their extra-man advantages this year. On the other hand, their penalty kill is rated 18th overall, and they’ve successfully killed off 80.3 percent of all penalties.

The Penguins, as a collective unit, have been penalized 4.0 times per game overall this season, and 3.2 per game over their last five at home. The teams had to kill penalties for just 7.1 minutes per game over their last 10 matchups, overall.

Averaging 26.0 saves per game with a .908 save percentage, Matt Murray (25-18-3) has been the top option in goal for the Pens this year. If Pittsburgh chooses to rest him, however, it might roll with Tristan Jarry (15-11-11 record, .908 save percentage, 2.77 goals against average).

The Pens will continue relying on offensive production out of Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel. Malkin (91 points) has tallied 41 goals and 50 assists and has recorded two or more points 25 times this year. Kessel has 30 goals and 53 assists to his credit and has notched at least one point in 52 games.

Philadelphia is 38-37 straight up (SU) and has lost 2.8 units for moneyline bettors this year. A total of 40 of its outings have gone over the total, while 33 have gone under and just two have pushed. As the road team, the Flyers are 19-18 SU.

The Flyers have converted on 20.2 percent of their power play opportunities this year, a mark that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 26th overall and it’s successfully killed off 76.1 percent of all opponent power plays.

Philadelphia’s skaters have been penalized 3.5 times per game in total this season, and 2.4 per game over their last five contests. The team has had to kill penalties just 7.2 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Brian Elliott (26.3 saves per game) has been the main option in the net for Philadelphia. Elliott has 22 wins, 19 losses, and seven OT losses to his credit, and has registered a .908 save percentage and 2.72 goals against average this year.

For the visiting Flyers, the offense will be coordinated by Claude Giroux, who’s got 64 assists and 26 goals this season.

Philadelphia Flyers at Pittsburgh Penguins Betting Predictions

NHL Tip: SU Winner – Penguins, O/U – Under

Betting Notes

  • Six of Pittsburgh’s last ten games have been decided by two or more goals, and the club is 4-2 overall in those games.
  • The extra-man advantage could prove to be critical in this one. The Flyers are 17-19 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than their opponent and 29-20 in games where they’re in the box for fewer than 10 penalty minutes, total. The Penguins are 20-11 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than the opposition and 26-21 when total penalty minutes are in the single digits.
  • Pittsburgh is 2-2 in games decided by a shootout this season while Philadelphia is 2-7 in shootouts.
  • The total has gone over in four of Pittsburgh’s last five outings.
  • Pittsburgh is ranked 13th this season with 8.9 giveaways per game. That figure has trended upward recently, as the teams averaged 11.1 giveaways over its last 10 games and 14.0 giveaways over its last five.
  • Philadelphia has averaged 9.6 giveaways over its last five home games, its season average of 9.3 giveaways per game (ranked 14th in the NHL).
  • The Penguins this season have tallied the ninth-most hits in the NHL (23.8 per game).