Minnesota Wild will host Calgary Flames in the NHL 2021-22 action on Tuesday evening. The home side’s form severely declined lately, and they search for a way back to the winning track. The visitors have been excellent lately, and they look forward to keeping up where they left off.
Minnesota is heading to the post-season, but the hosts have had some troubles recently. That is reflected in a poor form, and they want to turn their fortune around. On the other hand, Calgary is full of confidence after a series of good results. The away side intends to secure the pole position in the division and continue in the same fashion.
Minnesota Wild – Can they end their poor run?
The Wild cannot be happy with their current form, as they booked only one win on the previous six occasions. Instead of remaining in the game for the top place in the Central Division, they slipped to 3rd place and declined to a 31-16-3 record after three straight defeats. Nevertheless, Minnesota is on the right track to the post-season, as they are 10 points ahead of the Jets, having three games in hand. However, they need to do much better than against the same opponent last time out. They lost to Calgary 7-3 when Kaapo Kahkonen had a bad evening between the pipes with a .848 save percentage.
Kirill Kaprizov leads the Wild offense with a total of 63 points, topping the goalscoring and assists charts with 24 and 39, respectively. Mats Zuccarello has produced 53 points, while Kevin Fiala has 44. However, Ryan Hartman is the only player that crossed a 30-point margin with 37, while seven other skaters have chipped in with 20 or more points. Regarding the goaltending, Cam Talbot and Kaapo Kahkonen almost split their time between the pipes, having a .913 save percentage and allowing 3.08 goals per contest.
Expected Line-Up: Kaapo Kahkonen, Jonas Brodin, Alex Goligoski, Mats Zuccarello, Ryan Hartman, Kirill Kaprizov
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Calgary Flames – Will they keep a high level of performance?
Unlike their upcoming opponents, the Flames have been smoking hot lately. They suffered just two defeats in the previous 15 matches, and that excellent streak launched them to the top of the Pacific Division. Calgary is now three points ahead of the Los Angeles Kings, having a 31-14-6 record and three games in hand. Matthew Tkachuk and Tyler Toffoli led the Flames to a 7-3 win over Minnesota in their latest match with two goals and an assist each.
Johnny Gaudreau has been the most productive player in the Flames’ offense with 65 points, including a team-high 45 assists. Matthew Tkachuk has contributed with 59 points, while Elias Lindholm has 51. Andrew Mangiapane is the team’s top scorer with 27 goals and a total of 36 points, while six other skaters chipped in with 20+ points each. On the other hand, Jacob Markstrom spent most of the time between the pipes with 41 appearances. He allows only 2.13 goals per contest, having an excellent .921 save percentage.
Expected Line-Up: Jacob Markstrom, Rasmus Andersson, Noah Hanifin, Matthew Tkachuk, Elias Lindholm, Johnny Gaudreau
Expert Pick #1 – Flames to Win (Inc. OT and Pen.) @-120
Although it’s rare to see the Wild in an underdog role on the home ice, they didn’t convince me to back them. It’s a matter of time when they will get back on the winning track, but that shouldn’t be on Tuesday evening. I’ll back the Flames to win as the first pick.
Expert Pick #2 – Over 6 @-125
Both teams have been involved in many efficient matches lately, and this one shouldn’t be much different. Six of Minnesota’s last seven games went over the margin, as well as six of the Flames’ previous eight games. Give me the Over as the second bet.
Expert Pick #3 – Flames to Win & Both Teams Over 1.5 @+240
I’m going with a bit riskier bet as the third pick, but the odds are pretty tempting. If Calgary wins this one and both teams produce at least two goals each, this one could bring us excellent profits.