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Nashville Predators vs. Minnesota Wild - 1/12/14

Minnesota Wild (24-18-5) at Nashville Predators (19-20-7)

NHL Hockey: Sunday, January 12, 2014 at 7:00 pm (Bridgestone Arena)

The Line: Nashville Predators -147 / Minnesota Wild +134 --- Over/Under: 5 See the Latest Odds

TV: FS-N, FS-TN

The Minnesota Wild will visit the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Sunday night.

The Minnesota Wild have picked up the pace somewhat, winning four of the first five games of the new year. The Wild come into Sunday’s game off of a 4-2 home loss to the Colorado Avalanche. In that game, the Wild played the Avalanche close through two periods, but Colorado proved to be too much scoring two goals in the final period to put the game away. Minnesota will likely find it tough to score without two of the teams top scorers Zach Parise and Mikko Koivu, but the Wild will have to have offensive production to get the points necessary to keep the team in the Western Conference playoff hunt. 

Nashville Predators vs. Minnesota Wild - 1/12/14

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Similarly, the Nashville Predators are coming off of a 2-1 loss to the Ottawa Senators in a shootout. The Predators have lost five of the last six games, and while the team has been losing close contests, the Preds have earned a point in six of the last eight games. Nashville simply does not score enough to be some of offensive powerhouses in the West. The Preds are averaging 2.4 goals per game and allowing 2.9 goals per game, which ranks the team in the bottom third of the league in both categories.

This game will mark third of five meetings between these Central Division rivals, and the first two meetings this year were split. The wild are 1-6 in the last seven meetings in Nashville. The under is 5-0-1 in the last six meetings between these two, and with the injuries to Minnesota and the offensive inefficiency of both teams it is worth a look. However, I think the better play is on the home team here. Both teams are playing in the second game of a back-to-back and coming off of a loss, so I think the home team has the huge advantage. Also, statistics show that this season nearly 60% of home teams playing without rest have been the safe bet.

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Nashville Predators -147

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