Carolina Hurricanes (18-13-8) at Pittsburgh Penguins (20-18-3)
|Date & Time||Thursday January 4, 2018, 7:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Pittsburgh Penguins -150 / Carolina Hurricanes +13`0 --- Over/Under: 5.5
PPG PAINTS Arena and the Pittsburgh Penguins host the Carolina Hurricanes in Thursday NHL action.
The Carolina Hurricanes have been one of the hottest teams in the game for the past several weeks but have cooled down the last two times out with back to back defeats capped off by a 5-4, overtime loss to the visiting Washington Capitals. Victor Rask led the Hurricanes with a pair of goals with Elias Lindholm and Teuvo Teravainen also lighting the lamp.
Alex Ovechkin paced the Capitals offense with a pair of goals including the winner a 1:57 of the extra session. Devante Smith-Pelly, Alex Chiasson and Dmitry Orlov also found the scoring column while Niklas Backstrom added a pair of helpers to make a winner of Braden Holtby and his 34 saves. Cam Ward absorbed the loss for the Hurricanes with 21 stops.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have been brutally inconsistent the past several weeks with the team unable to string wins together behind an offense that isn’t scoring. Pittsburgh broke through at the offensive end Tuesday in a 5-1 victory at the Philadelphia Flyers. Jordan Weal scored the lone Flyers goal and Brian Elliott allowed four goals on 14 shots before Michal Neuvirth came in to stop 10-11 shots.
The Penguins saw five different players score with Ryan Reaves, Phil Kessel, Conor Sheary, Tom Kuhnhackl and Jamie Oleksiak each finding the back of the net. Evgeni Malkin posted a pair of assists to help Tristian Jarry pick up the win for Pittsburgh and up his record to 6-3-2.
Hurricanes are 4-0 in their last 4 vs. a team with a losing record and over is 9-2 in Hurricanes last 11 when their opponent allows 2 goals or less in their previous game and under is 4-1 in Hurricanes last 5 games playing on 1 days rest. Penguins are 0-5 in their last 5 games following a win and Penguins are 6-1 in their last 7 when their opponent allows 5 goals or more in their previous game and Penguins are 6-1 in their last 7 after scoring 5 goals or more in their previous game. Hurricanes are 0-4 in the last 4 meetings in Pittsburgh and Hurricanes are 1-7 in the last 8 meetings and under is 4-1-1 in the last 6 meetings in Pittsburgh.
Asking the Penguins to win back to back games has been an impossible task lately so proceed with caution…