NHL Picks and Predictions for February 17

Updated: February 17, 2021

After a wild 6-5 overtime game on Monday – which saw Ottawa overcome a 5-1 deficit in the final 21 minutes – look for the Leafs and Sens to play a tighter, defensive game on Wednesday.

Photo By – USA TODAY Sports

It’s NHL betting deja vu on Wednesday, as we have rematches of Monday games in four of the five contests on the ice tonight.

We’re expecting the Maple Leafs to bounce back defensively, riding the no-respect wagon in Florida and looking at a plus-money play in Detroit.

We break down the hockey odds and bring our best free NHL predictions for Wednesday, February 17. 

NHL picks for today

Florida Panthers vs Carolina Hurricanes

The Panthers are 9-2-2 on the season and a big part of that success has come from a very surprising player: goalie Chris Driedger.

Driedger has been playing like the No. 1 netminder, despite getting paid more than $9 million less than Sergei Bobrovsky. On the year, the Panthers’ backup is 4-1-1 with a 2.31 goals-against average, a .936 save percentage and is coming off an impressive win over the Lightning on Monday.

Florida has lost just two games in regulation this season and is tied for second in the Central Division with Wednesday’s opponent, the Carolina Hurricanes.

The Canes have been hot as well, as their -156 ML indicates, but this is also a Carolina team that has allowed three or more goals in seven of its last eight matches. The Hurricanes have also benefited from playing sub-.500 teams in nine straight games.

Coming off a 2-1 series win against Tampa Bay, the Panthers are in top form and will send their best goalie between the pipes on Wednesday. Carolina has been one of the most generous teams in the league this month, which has us leaning on the Over but at +135, we’re taking the value in the Florida moneyline as these two teams are much closer in talent than the books are suggesting.

PREDICTION: Florida moneyline (+135)

Covers NHL betting analysis

Ottawa Senators vs Toronto Maple Leafs

We’re hoping Leafs backers hit the cash-out button last Monday as the Buds blew a 5-1 lead in the final 21 minutes and eventually lost 6-5 in extra time to the Sens. The game was as loose as one will see and something Toronto coach Sheldon Keefe will not want to replicate on Wednesday.

The Leafs allowed a season-high six non-power-play goals, which is an anomaly for a team that averages 1.56 against per game. The six Ottawa goals equaled the team’s output of its previous four games combined. This was just one of those games. But the books are expecting another shootout with the Over 6.5 paying -120 at opening.

The Senators were 0-6-1 O/U in their seven games before the 6-5 win. No. 1 goalie Matt Murray may also be available after missing Monday’s game and while his peripherals aren’t anything to brag about, he is the better goalie on the roster and is 4-7 O/U in 11 starts this year.

The Leafs should come out with an emphasis on protecting their own net. Sitting on that epic loss for a couple of days should be enough for Toronto to commit to a full 200-foot game, which could mean trouble for an Ottawa team that was averaging just 2.12 goals per game heading into Monday’s match.

PREDICTION: Ottawa-Toronto Under 6.5 (+100)

Chicago Blackhawks vs Detroit Red Wings

Away favorites are hitting at over 60 percent this year and Wednesday’s card has just one traveling favorite: the Chicago Blackhawks.

Chicago was only favored in two games in January – both against the Red Wings, today’s opponent – but after collecting 13 of a possible 16 points since the calendar flipped, this is a Blackhawks team that sits above the Predators, Stars and Blue Jackets in the Central Division.

Sure, Chicago has needed overtime to pick up nine of those 13 points, but in games against the Red Wings this year, the Blackhawks are 3-0 SU and have outscored Detroit 13-5. Chicago has never trailed in the three matchups and has led for 143:05 out of a possible 180 minutes.

Detroit is the second-lowest scoring team in the league at 2.06 goals per game and that trend has continued in the three games against Chicago, as it has scored just five goals (three at 5×5).

With forward Alex DeBrincat drawing back into the Chicago lineup, the Blackhawks can now roll out a solid three lines with the top six doing most of the heavy lifting when it comes to scoring.

Don’t expect a shootout on Wednesday as Monday’s match netted just over three expected goals and both teams are a combined 2-8 O/U in their last five games.

There is value in Chicago on the ML at -135 (+100 3-way), but we are trying to incorporate some plus-money plays as it goes a long way—hockey is a game of bounces and one of the more difficult sports to handicap.

At +175 on the puck line, we can’t pass up those odds, especially with the lack of scoring from Detroit.

PREDICTION: Chicago -1.5 (+175)

Top NHL consensus for today

Want to know who today’s biggest NHL betting and consensus bets are right now? Check out our top NHL consensus picks.

NHL betting card for February 17

  • Florida moneyline (+135)
  • Ottawa-Toronto Under 6.5 (+100)
  • Chicago -1.5 (+175)

NHL parlays

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Use our NHL parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.

Where can I bet on the NHL?

You can bet on NHL odds at every online and casino sportsbook, including NHL moneylines, puck lines, Over/Under totals, and a ton of NHL prop odds. Head over to our best-suggested sportsbooks for the top spots to bet on NHL odds in your area.

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