NHL Hockey Betting: Arizona Coyotes at New Jersey Devils

NHL Hockey Betting:  Arizona Coyotes at New Jersey Devils

Two struggling teams will meet at the Prudential Center on Tuesday night as the New Jersey Devils host the Arizona Coyotes. The Coyotes opened the season with a 4-3 home win over the Philadelphia Flyers but have gone 0 for 4 on a brutal six game road trip with losses at Ottawa, Montreal and against both the New York Rangers and Islanders. They showed some marginal improvement in their last two games losing by one goal in each but the bottom line is that they’re 1-4-0 on the season and have not only the worst record in the Pacific Division and Western Conference but in the entire NHL. New Jersey has been marginally better at 2-2-1 which looks better due to their nasty schedule to date–at Florida and Tampa Bay, home against Anaheim, at Boston and home against Minnesota. It won’t get any easier–after the Coyotes leave town they’ve got Chicago and Tampa Bay at home before hitting the road for another set of Florida dates against the Panthers and Lightning. They also batch a break playing in the Metropolitan Division where none of the teams have come roaring out of the gate like Montreal in the Atlantic Division.

Tentatively, Louis Domingue is listed as the starter in goal for Arizona but he could probably use a night off. He’s 0-4-0 on the year with a 5.03 goals against average and a 0.851 save percentage. That goals against average is the worst in the NHL, the save percentage is #42 out of 45 goalies and he’s the only goalie in the league with 4 losses on the season. Arizona got some good news about Mike Smith–his ‘lower body injury’ ended up being a not too serious knee injury and he’s listed as ‘week to week’ which is an improvement on ‘out indefinitely’. That won’t help Domingue in the short term and it doesn’t say much about backup Justin Peters’ ability to help out in the short term. No problem in net for the Devils as ironman Cory Schneider will start here–he’s got the #5 GAA in hockey at 1.80 but is still not getting any help from his struggling offense. The Devils have averaged 1.60 goals per game to date which is dead last in the NHL.

Devils haven’t scored more than two goals in a game this season but that could change against the struggling Domingue. To be fair, the defense in front of him has been lousy (34.4 shots against per game #29 in the league) and the offense hasn’t been anything special either (#21 at 2.80 goals per game). The Devils lack offensive playmakers but are reasonably effective playing their defensively oriented style. Coyotes seem a bit discombobulated at this point and this is a tough spot to get things together. Then again, with upcoming games at Philadelphia and then home against Colorado, San Jose and Nashville it’s not clear if they’ll have a ‘good spot’ any time soon.