NHL Betting Guide: Tuesday 2/23/21

The Capitals do not have consecutive victories on home ice since the end of January. Is tonight a good spot for them to buck that trend?

We are looking at a six-game slate on Tuesday night and have keyed up a few underdogs worth backing in good spots tonight.

Here are the teams we're looking at!

Washington Capitals vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

Capitals Moneyline (-106): 1-Star Rating out of 5

The Washington Capitals head into their Tuesday night matchup with the Pittsburgh Penguins as modest -106 underdogs. What we've seen from the Capitals recently suggests that they should be favorites.

Washington has posted above average production metrics in four of their last six games. This has translated to increased output, as the Caps have at least three goals in five of their last six. They have also had better relative possession in all six of those games and have the benefit of playing on home ice.

Pittsburgh comes into this one having been outplayed in eight of their last 10 games. The Pens are 5-4-1 in that span despite the limited advanced metrics success. They should find themselves on the wrong side of outcomes unless they find a way to generate more offense and limit chances against.

When these teams met last for a two-game set, the Capitals outplayed the Pens by out-shooting them 73-65 and out-chancing them in scoring chances 48-46 and in high-danger chances 26-15.

Based on our projections, Washington should be favored, as they have a 55.9% chance of winning. That leaves value in backing the Caps as -106 underdogs, which we rate as a one-star play.

Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Chicago Blackhawks

Blackhawks Moneyline (+108): 1-Star Rating out of 5

The Columbus Blue Jackets and Chicago Blackhawks renew acquaintances for the third time this season. Both teams have two wins apiece after splitting both sets of games.

The typically stingy defensive structure of the Blue Jackets has been exposed recently, as they have given up 11 or more high-danger chances in four of six and 26 or more scoring opportunities in three of four. Over that span, they have set the high mark for both scoring chances and high-danger chances against on the season, at 36 and 19, respectively.

That could be trouble against a Blackhawks squad that is scoring on 11.8% of their shots over the last five games. That brings the Hawks season-long percentage up to 9.6%, which could continue to climb, considering the goal scorers they have in their lineup.

The Blue Jackets will be without Elvis Merzlikins, as he deals with an upper-body injury. That leaves the Jackets with Joonas Korpisalo, who has been largely ineffective this season.

Considering the offensive prowess of the Hawks recently, along with the porous defense the Blue Jackets have displayed, this is a good spot for the Hawks. That value is reflected in our algorithm, which gives the Hawks a 52.8% chance of winning tonight. That probability is in excess of the 48.1% implied probability of +108 and makes the Hawks moneyline a one-star play.

Detroit Red Wings vs. Nashville Predators

Red Wings Moneyline (+138): 1-Star Rating out of 5

Don't look now, but the Detroit Red Wings have three wins in their last eight. That might not sound impressive, but considering how low the bar was set for this team entering the season, that's something to hang their hats on.

The advanced metrics support that Detroit isn't as bad as people expected them to be. They are top-10 in scoring and high-danger chances allowed per game and have the 21st-ranked expected goals-for percentage at 48.2%, which is vastly superior to their actual percentage of 37.0% that ranks 30th in the league. All things considered, the Wings are due for positive regression.

The Nashville Predators don't have a ton of firepower to overpower the Red Wings with. They've managed more than eight high-danger chances and 25 scoring chances just twice over their last seven games and have been held to two or fewer goals in five of those games.

Based on our projections, tonight is not a good spot to back the Preds. The betting market may have overreacted to their most recent victory, and the Red Wings have been better than their record implies. That makes the Wings moneyline a one-star play, as per our projections.