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NHL Monday player props: McDavid to thrive vs. Barkov-less Panthers

Christopher Mast / National Hockey League / Getty

With seven games on the schedule for Monday night, we're in for an abnormally busy start to the week.

Let's take a closer look at a few of my favorite props on a loaded board.

Connor McDavid: Over 3.5 shots

McDavid's shot volume is slowly getting to the level to which we've all grown accustomed. He started the season slow, attempting more than five shots only once over his first six games and, unsurprisingly, failing to go over his shot total in all but one of those contests.

But McDavid has since attempted at least six shots in seven of eight games, averaging 7.1 over that time.

While the Panthers are not generally a team I want to target for shots, there are plenty of reasons to like McDavid tonight.

At the top of the list is the fact Selke candidate Aleksander Barkov is out of the lineup with an injury. McDavid would've seen a healthy dose of Barkov on the road. His absence is certainly a big plus.

McDavid is also seeing an insane workload on a nightly basis. Given how poorly the Oilers started the year, they have no margin for error moving forward, and McDavid will see as much ice as possible if the game is competitive.

That's already been the case under new head coach Kris Knoblauch.

McDavid played fewer than 20 minutes in the first two games with Knoblauch, both of which were 4-1 wins.

In close games against the Kraken and Lightning, McDavid played over 23 minutes.

I have a hard time believing the Oilers will walk all over the Panthers, meaning McDavid should see a massive workload in this spot.

Odds: -106 (playable to -125)

Mika Zibanejad: Over 2.5 shots

Zibanejad has been very consistent on the road this season. He is averaging 3.1 shots on goal per game and has gone over his shot total eight times in 10 tries.

He has found success against plenty of strong shot-suppression teams, registering three or more against the Devils, Jets, Canucks, and Oilers, to name a few.

Although the Stars don't seem like a great matchup on paper, there is plenty to like with Zibanejad in this spot.

The Stars rank in the bottom 10 in shots against per game over the past 10 contests.

They have given up a lot of volume to opposing centers this season, slotting in the bottom third in that category as well.

This should be a close game, allowing Zibanejad to get all the ice he can handle from start to finish. Expect him to take advantage.

Odds: -130 (playable to -150)

Quinn Hughes: Over 2.5 shots

Hughes has been automatic on home ice this season, going over his shot total in seven of eight games.

He is not fighting tooth and nail to get the job done. He is consistently going over with room to spare.

Hughes is averaging 4.1 shots on goal and eight attempts when playing in Vancouver. As I've often pointed out this season, those are the kind of numbers you'd expect to see from a 40-goal scorer on the wing.

What makes Hughes especially attractive is that he's going up against the league's worst team. The Sharks allow more shots - and shots against defensemen - than every team in the league.

With the Canucks coming off a somewhat ugly loss to the Kraken, they will no doubt be looking to take their frustrations out on the Sharks. Look for the captain to lead the charge and be heavily involved offensively.

Odds: -140 (playable to -170)

Todd Cordell is a sports betting writer at theScore. Follow him on X, formerly known as Twitter, at @ToddCordell.

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