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Back Islanders to clinch playoff spot with win over Devils

Vitor Munhoz / National Hockey League / Getty

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We have one of our last big slates of the season as half of the league is set to take the ice Monday night.

Let's take a look at a few of my favorite betting spots.

Islanders (-115) @ Devils (-105)

The Devils remain a target as they play out their season. They've won just seven of 18 games since deadline day and posted putrid numbers in that span.

Their five-on-five expected goals share of 45.9% is among the worst in the NHL, and without Jack Hughes, they don't have as much high-end talent to compensate. It's not a good recipe.

While the Devils might have some extra pep in their step playing in their season finale on home ice, I have a hard time believing they'll be able to match the Islanders' intensity. New York has a ton to play for as it'd clinch a playoff spot with a result in this game.

Several teams are on the Islanders' tails. They won't want to drop this game and leave their playoff spot to chance in the finale.

They're also just a much better team than the Devils right now. The Islanders sit 15th in high-danger chance share since deadline day, 12 slots higher than New Jersey.

It's also worth noting only eight teams have allowed fewer power-play markers than the Islanders over the past five weeks. The Devils have struggled at five-on-five and relied on the power play to give them some big goals. They probably won't get those against the Islanders, making it difficult to keep up.

Look for the Islanders to grind out a playoff-clinching win.

Bet: Islanders (-115)

Dylan Larkin: Over 3.5 shots

Larkin has taken things up a notch as his Red Wings fight tooth and nail for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. He averaged 4.3 shots on 7.2 attempts over the last 10 games and registered at least three shots all but once.

I expect his increased volume to continue against the Canadiens. Larkin has feasted on them in recent years, generating four shots or more in six of the past eight head-to-head meetings.

The Canadiens are a poor shot-suppression team and sit 29th in shots allowed versus centers over the past 10 games. They should provide Larkin with as advantageous of a matchup as he could hope.

Expect Larkin to fire pucks on net early and often with his team's season on the line.

Bet: -122 (playable to -140)

Brayden Point: Over 2.5 shots

Point is as good as it gets when playing on home ice. He's gone over his total 27 times through 38 tries, good for an absurd 71% success rate.

Zooming in a little further, Point has three shots or more in 15 of his past 19 in Tampa Bay. That's a 79% clip spanning over multiple months.

I'm expecting another active performance against the Sabres. They're a below-average team when it comes to preventing shots versus centers.

Superstar linemate Nikita Kucherov also sits at 98 assists. He's chasing history and, with the Lightning locked into their playoff spot, they'll no doubt want him to tidy up so they can rest him and other key players.

That means Kucherov should be as pass-happy as ever, almost solely focusing on distributing the puck. Point rides shotgun with Kucherov at even strength and on the power play, making him a prime beneficiary.

Odds: -145 (playable to -160)

Todd Cordell is a sports betting writer at theScore. You can follow him on X at @ToddCordell.

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