Mega Mid-Week Picks Part II (Nov. 10th)
Welcome back to Part II of Mega Mid-week picks. After 21 picks for yesterday's games, here are an additional 11 picks for tonight.
Maple Leafs @ Flyers (NHL)
The Pick: PHI +115
The Maple Leafs enter this game having won 6 out of their last 7 games, so it is safe to say they are feeling pretty good right now. However, all but one of those wins came at home. Toronto's road record is much more damning; a 1-3 record with less than two goals scored per game. The Flyers have not been great at home (3-2 overall), but never underestimate the impact the crowd can have. Most recently, Philidelphia took down the mighty Capitals in Washington and has been finding success with the emergence of Carter Hart in the net. Given the ugly road record of the Maple Leafs and the improved goaltending of the Flyers, you should go with a Philadelphia upset in this one.
Predators @ Stars (NHL)
The Pick: NSH +130
I have completely hopped on the Juuse Saros hype train. That man is a breast between the pipes with a 2.31 GAA and a multitude of highlight saves this season. He will lead the Predators to great things in the coming years, but for now, he has to contend with the Stars. The Stars are slumping right now as the team has lost 5 of 6 games. The goaltending has been rather leaky over the stretch with at least three goals allowed in all six of those games. With Saros in the net and the recent struggles of Dallas, go with the upset here.
Wild @ Coyotes (NHL)
The Pick: MIN -1.5 (+120)
Arizona is such dumpster fire, the team has one win through 12 games this season. Now, the red-hot Wild are coming to town and the result can only be ugly. The Wild have won three games in a row while scoring five goals apiece during that stretch. The Coyotes are dead-last in goals allowed per game with four. The Wild's offense could run hog-wild in this one. Minnesota has a habit of playing in close games, but in lieu of taking an ugly money line (-210, only use this in parlays), I feel comfortable taking the puck line.
Ball State @ Northern Illinois (NCAAF)
The Pick: NIU +3
The battle Bronze Stalk Trophy will be fought tonight! Northern Illinois is a home underdog and has a better record (6-3) compared to Ball State (5-4). Furthermore, Northern Illinois is 2-0 against like opponents while Ball State is only 1-1. Ball State has won the previous two matchups between the two, but prior to that Northern Illinois had won the previous 10. Go with the home team in this game.
Buffalo @ Michigan (NCAAM)
The Picks: MICH -12.5
A top ten team at home facing off against a mid-major team and only favored by 12.5? Hmmm, seems like an easy pick to me. Last year, Michigan won 14 regular-season games by at least ten points (22 games total). This year's squad projects to be better than last year's. I like the Wolverines to win handly at home. Additionally, the non-conference Wolverine games have combined for more than 150 points three out of the last five games. Both teams are ranked in the top 100 of offensive efficiencies so I would expect a shootout tonight. Take the over.
Youngstown State @ Penn State (NCAAM)
The Pick: OVER 146.5
Big Ten games more often than not are gonna hit the under. However, there are a few teams within the conference that are more "over" oriented. Penn State is one of those teams. The Nittany Lions come into this game with 58th ranked offense according to KenPom. Youngstown St. has a better-ranked offense compared to their defense. When both teams have higher-ranked offenses, there is a recipe for hitting the over. In what should be a high-scoring affair, it is safe to pick the over.
Penn @ Florida State (NCAAM)
The Pick: FSU -19.5
The Seminoles are projected to be one of the more well-rounded teams in college basketball this year. Their offense and defense are both ranked highly, but neither unit is considered elite. Still, Penn is looking like they will be in the bottom half of teams this season. An Ivy team such as this one does not have the talent nor the athleticism to hang with an FSU team that possesses both of those attributes. Flordia State will win this one handily.
Heat @ Lakers (NBA)
The Pick: MIA -5
The Lakers have been anything but elite this season, the team has played close games against far inferior opponents and has not beat any meaningful team yet. The Heat are a meaningful team and they are playing well. Even with losses in two out of three games, there is no reason to fade Miami. The Heat will win this one on the road and move to 8-3.
Bucks @ Knicks (NBA)
The Pick: NY -3.5
Five days ago, the Knicks crushed the Bucks in Milwaukee. I expect the Knicks to do it once again in front of the New York crowd tonight. It has been a long time since the Knicks were good and it's rare that they will get a chance to beat a defending champ twice in one season, it will be relished. The Bucks are riding the struggle bus and can not be counted on at the moment.
Trailblazers @ Suns
The Pick: PHO -5
The Suns are on a roll right now, as they have won five straight. The Trailblazers have been up and down all season and most recently took a loss at the hands of the Clippers. Fade the Blazers and embrace the Suns. I the words of the almighty Beatles, here comes the Suns doo doo doo doo. Phoenix will cover the spread in this one.