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NHL Free Play January 10th, 2018

Two Weary Teams Take the Ice in Chicago

The NHL is a lengthy season with a lot of travel. This is why teams playing on the second leg of a back-to-back scheduling are a good ‘bet against.’ In the 1/10 NHL free pick between the Wild and Blackhawks however, both teams are playing their second game in as many nights. Chicago is actually playing their third game in four nights but oddsmakers still have them listed as -120 favorites. Which team does the value lie in on Wednesday night?

Minnesota Has Lost Two in a Row

1/10 NHL free pick
Dubnyk is hoping to run into a tired Chicago offense on Wednesday.

The Wild might actually have the travel advantage coming into the United Center after a home game last night. Minnesota was a 2-3 OT loser to Calgary on Tuesday, their second straight defeat. A road win would be nice for the Wild as they’ve lost four straight away from St. Paul and are just 8-13-0 when not on their home ice this season.

What Minnesota really needs in the 1/10 NHL free pick is a sign of some consistency. In their last four games they’ve put up 11 goals in two contests, but just four total in the other two. The Wild defense gave up six goals in three of those games – but then seven alone in a 2-7 defeat in Colorado. Devan Dubnyk is back in net for Minnesota after sitting out last night against the Flames. He looks to rebound from giving up six goals on 32 shots in his last start against the Avalanche. Prior to that however, Dubnyk had won six of seven decisions – giving up more than two goals just once.

Glass Makes His Second Home Start

1/10 NHL free pick
Toews is finding his scoring touch lately with five goals in five games.

The Wild aren’t the only team in the 1/10 NHL free pick with a rested goalie. Chicago sends Jeff Glass back into net after two solid performances by Anton Forsberg. Glass is hoping to rebound from his last start just like Dubnyk is for Minnesota. The rookie goaltender took the home ice at the United Center for the first time on January 5th, but gave up five goals (albeit on 43 shots) in a loss to Vegas. Glass has allowed 3+ goals in three of his four starts this year which has the #16 Wild offense beaming.

Chicago won two straight with Forsberg in net, but they could have gotten those victories with Goldberg from the Mighty Ducks between the pipes as the Blackhawks offense tallied 12 goals in those two games. Last night Chicago abused Ottawa in an 8-2 victory on the road. The ‘Hawks have shown signs of getting their offense going leading up to the NHL All-Star break as Jonathan Toews has five goals in five games while Patrick Kane allied five points last night alone.

1/10 NHL Free Pick Betting

Both teams are on 0 days rest (a combined 1-10 over the last 11), but the biggest factor in deciding tonight’s contest could be the fact that Minnesota is on the road. The Wild are 0-4 in their last four road tilts and 3-15 in their last 18 road contests vs a team with a winning home record. The Blackhawks are 5-1 their last six home games and Minnesota is 6-14 the last 20 in Chicago. There’s good value in the ‘Hawks line of -120, mostly because the Wild have the goaltending edge. The Chicago offense is clicking though putting up 4+ goals in five of the last six and the home crowd should be the advantage.

Pick: Chicago Blackhawks -120

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Carl Taylor

Every loss is a chance to learn a lesson. That being said, wins are so much more enjoyable. Follow along to tap into the wisdom I've learned from 20 years as a sports bettor.

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