Together the combatants in the February 9th NHL free pick have lost their last six games. One of those teams, Minnesota, is still in a pretty solid spot with the 7th seed in the West. Then again, every team in the West is still in contention so every game is important for the Wild. New Jersey on the other hand sits at 2nd to last in the East. The Devils have beaten Pittsburgh and Montreal after the Winter break however so upset is on their mind – especially at home.
Things Aren’t Getting Any Easier for Minnesota
As if it wasn’t bad enough for the Wild being in a four game losing streak while the rest of the Western Conference is catching fire, the injury bug caught up with the team this week. Star forward and team captain Mikko Koivu tore his ACL and will miss the rest of the season. Minnesota definitely looks like a team that has lost interest despite their current spot in contention for a playoff position. Since the Winter break alone the Wild and their 4-game losing streak includes defeats to Chicago (OT) as -179 favorites and most recently a 1-4 loss to Edmonton as -166.
The Wild have a bit of a new look ahead of the February 9th NHL free pick as they have moved Mikael Granlund to center. The Wild had won 6 straight road games before the break, so this is a team that can win on Saturday if they play up to their capabilities. The offense has been held to 1 goal in two of the last four however. Also, Devan Dubnyk has struggled in net since the break, going 0-2-1 while allowing 7 goals on 61 shots (.885) the last two games.
New Jersey Looks to Fix Recent Home Issues
The Devils are 2-2-1 since the Winter break and interestingly enough their wins have come in the two road games over that span, both as huge underdogs. Dating back prior to the Winter break New Jersey has dropped four in a row at home but is still 13-8-4 on their own ice this season. The trade of Brian Boyle this week signifies a white flag being waved by New Jersey. Their definitely in contention in the Jack Hughes #1 draft pick sweepstakes, as the Devils are just 3 points ahead of Ottawa for worst team in the league. Can Minnesota take advantage in the February 9th NHL free pick?
The Devils have lost 6 of 8,and it’s not looking like they have the talent to get past even a struggling Wild team. Then again Edmonton was so bad fans were throwing jerseys on the ice but they looked dominant in a 4-1 win vs. Minnesota on Thursday. Nico Hischier has 3 goals in the last four games but that’s about it for scoring for New Jersey. Leading point man Kyle Palmieri has just two in the five games since the break. Today’s starter between the pipes Cory Schneider makes just his second start since December 14th after missing time with an abdominal injury. New Jersey’s hopes are bleak to say the least.
February 9th NHL Free Pick Betting
Most people would agree that a fire sale is probably coming for Minnesota ahead of the trade deadline at the end of February. That being said, players still play and the Wild have too much talent to lose to this Devils team with their issues both in net and on the offensive end.
NHL Free Pick: Minnesota Wild -132