The Stars have hit a bit of a rough patch lately, dropping 4 of their last 5. To be fair, each of those contests were away from the American Airlines Center. Dallas is back home for the first time in over two weeks and they’ve gone 4-0 in the last four on their own ice. Nashville comes to town in the February 19th NHL free pick and they’re limping in as well, going 1-3-1 over their last five. The Preds are still getting the edge however, listed at -120 favorites.
Predators Favored Despite Their Road Woes
Nashville is in a good spot overall, sitting in fourth in the Western Conference just 6 points back from top seeded Calgary. Even so, if the Predators want to stay afloat in the race for home ice they need to start playing better on the road. Nashville has gone 7-15 in their last 22 away from Bridgestone Arena. That includes a 1-5 loss in Vegas on Saturday and a 2-3 loss in Florida 10 days ago. Those were the only two road games Nashville has played in the last 18 days. How will the Predators respond after playing 6 of their last 8 at home?
Nashville is going to try to win the February 19th NHL free pick behind their #3 defense as well as Pekka Rinne in net. Rinne is just 2-3 over his last 5 starts however but he hasn’t allowed more than 3 goals since a January 17th loss to Winnipeg. Hence the Predators offense is struggling, being held to 2 goals or less in three of the last five overall. After a five game point streak Filip Forsberg has been shut out in two straight. Viktor Arvidsson could pick up the slack however as he has four goals the past four games.
Stars Want to Get Things Going Back at Home
Dallas is hoping they’ve survived the storm and that a quick 3-game home stand will get them back on the winning track. The team hasn’t gone into red alert mode just yet despite a 1-4 record over their last 5. After all they knocked out four straight wins right after the all-star break and are still in the #1 wild card spot with 63 points. The February 19th NHL free pick will be the 5th and final meeting between the two division rivals this season, including the third this month. Dallas has taken a point in each of the last four games (2-0-2).
It’s no secret what the Stars need to do on Tuesday – find some offense. The team has been shut out in back-to-back games and scored just 7 total goals over their recent 5-game road swing. Tyler Seguin had a 2 goal game a week ago vs. Florida, but has been kept off the scorer’s sheet in 3 of 4. Jamie Benn has just 4 points in 8 February games. Anton Khubodin gets the nod in net again for the injured Ben Bishop. Khubodin is 1-3-1 over his last 5, but has also gone 2-0-1 vs. Nashville this season with a 1.33 GAA and a .964 SV%.
February 19th NHL Free Pick Betting
Neither one of these teams have been very inspiring lately but you have to think that Dallas’ home record is more likely to give them an edge compared to Nashville’s recent struggles on the road. Even though the Predators are 7-3 in the last 10 H2H meetings, Dallas has matched up well with them this season going 2-0-2. The Stars looked great out of the chute after the all-star break and they should return to that form Tuesday.
NHL Free Pick: Dallas Stars +100