Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Detroit Red Wings Betting Preview

Jose VasquezArticles, Hockey, NHL

Two clubs that are squaring off for the third and final time this season, the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Detroit Red Wings collide at Little Caesars Arena for an Eastern Conference tilt. TVA Sports will broadcast the game, and the action gets going at 7:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 27.

Pittsburgh Penguins at Detroit Red Wings Odds

Pittsburgh (+180) is entering this one as the underdog to Pittsburgh (-220) and the oddsmakers have set the Over/Under (O/U) at 6 goals. The line for betting that total stands at -105 money on the over and -115 for the under.

Pittsburgh is 43-33 straight up (SU) and has lost 1.9 units for moneyline bettors thus far. Through 76 regular season matches, 43 of its games have gone over the total, while 31 have gone under and just two have pushed. The Pens are 15-23 SU on the road in 2017-18.

Pittsburgh currently touts the first-strongest power-play unit in the NHL, as it’s scored on 26.2 percent of its extra-man opportunities this year. Its penalty kill is ranked 18th overall, and the teams successfully killed off 80.2 percent of all penalties.

For the team as a whole, Pittsburgh has been penalized 4.0 times per game during the 2017-18 season, 3.4 per game over its last five total, and 3.6 per game over its last five games as the visiting team. The team has had to kill penalties just 7.3 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Averaging 26.4 saves per game with a .908 save percentage, Matt Murray (26-18-3) has been the top option in goal for Pittsburgh this season. If Pittsburgh decides to rest him, however, head coach Mike Sullivan could roll with Tristan Jarry (15-11-2), who has a .908 save percentage and 2.77 goals against average this year.

The visiting Penguins have relied on Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel this season. Malkin has 92 points on 42 goals and 50 assists, and has recorded two or more points in 25 different games. Kessel has 30 goals and 55 assists to his credit, and has logged at least one point in 53 games.

On the other side of the rink, Detroit is 27-49 straight up (SU) and has lost 18.1 units for moneyline bettors this year. 43 of its outings have gone under the total, while 30 have gone over and just two have pushed. It’s 14-23 SU at home this season.

Detroit has converted on just 17.1 percent of its power play chances this season, a figure that places it in the bottom 10 overall among NHL teams. Its penalty kill is also ranked 24th overall, and it’s successfully killed off 77.9 percent of all penalties.

Detroit players have been penalized 3.8 times per game in total this season, and 4.6 per game over their past five outings. The team’s had to stave off opponent power plays just 7.2 minutes per contest over their last five home games.

Jimmy Howard (26.6 saves per game) has been the primary selection in goal for Detroit. Howard has 19 wins, 37 losses, and eight overtime losses and has registered a subpar .909 save percentage and 2.88 goals against average this season.

The home team offense will be led by Dylan Larkin (12 goals, 42 assists).

Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Detroit Red Wings Betting Predictions

NHL Pick: SU Winner – Red Wings, O/U – Under

Betting Trends

  • The total has gone over in three of Detroit’s last five outings.
  • The Penguins are 15-7 when the team outshoots its opponent by 10 or more. They’ve averaged the leagues third-most shots on goal (34.6) while Detroit has attempted the 26th-most (only 30.4).
  • Power plays and penalty kills could be even more critical than usual in tonight’s matchup. The Penguins are 20-11 in games where they serve fewer penalty minutes than their opponent and 27-21 when they serve fewer than 10 total penalty minutes. The Red Wings are 9-16 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than the opposition and 19-31 in games where they’re in the box for less than 10 minutes.
  • Pittsburgh is 2-2 in games decided by a shootout this season while Detroit is 5-1 in shootouts.
  • Detroit is ranked 24th with 6.2 takeaways per game. That figures trended down, however, as the team has averaged 4.0 takeaways over its last 10 games and 4.2 takeaways over its last five.
  • Pittsburgh is ranked 19th overall with 7.0 takeaways per game. That figure has trended down lately, however, as the team has averaged 6.4 takeaways over its last 10 games and 6.0 takeaways over its last five.