- What: Colorado Avalanche vs. Carolina Hurricanes – 2022-23 NHL Regular Season
- When: Thursday, November 17, 2022, at 7:00 p.m. EST
- Where: PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina
Two teams with realistic 2023 Stanley Cup aspirations will meet on Thursday night for some must-watch NHL action. The Carolina Hurricanes are slated to host the Colorado Avalanche in what figures to be an outstanding matchup between two of hockey’s most complete squads. Should these teams live up to expectations this season, we could very well be looking at a preview matchup for the 2023 Stanley Cup, which makes for some intriguing betting action.
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Avalanche vs. Hurricanes Odds
|Puck Line||Money Line||Total|
|Avalanche||+1.5 (-240)||+105||O 6.0 (-120)|
|Hurricanes||-1.5 (+200)||-125||U 6.0 (+100)|
The Avalanche enter the matchup as slight underdogs on the road against Carolina. Colorado has (+105) odds to take home a win over the Canes, while Carolina is slated as (-125) to win. The spread predicts a tightly-contested battle, with the Avs +1.5 coming in at (-240), indicating Colorado should keep things close even against a strong Hurricanes team. The goal total is set at 6.0, though it favors the Over (-120).
Avalanche keys to victory
The Colorado Avalanche are one of the most star-studded teams in hockey and while they haven’t gotten off to a red-hot start this year, they’ve won four of their last five games. That includes a 4-1 win over the Hurricanes on their home ice less than a week ago. Having shown the ability to take down Carolina during their first matchup this season, the Avs could once again steal a win over the Hurricanes, even when playing in a hostile environment.
This season, Colorado is 8-5-1 for a total of 17 points throughout their first 14 games. The Avs have one of the best offenses in hockey, registering 51 goals (3.64 per game). The team is led on offense by superstar forward and Hart Trophy hopeful Nathan MacKinnon, who is off to a torrid start to the season. MacKinnon has 24 points on the year, including four goals and 20 assists.
Mikko Rantanen will also be key for the Avs. The Finnish sensation leads the Avalanche with 25 points, including 11 goals and 14 assists. While a near 64-goal pace is surely unsustainable for Rantanen, he should easily clear the 100-point threshold this year, and could be the X-factor for Colorado’s offense as they look to score against one of the most physical defenses in the league.
As for their own defense, Colorado has surrendered just 38 goals in its first 14 games, an average of just 2.7 per game. Their improved defense has been noticeable of late, having not conceded more than three goals in any of their last five games. During two of those five games, the Avs held their opponents to just one goal. With so much talent across the roster, the Avalanche will be relying on their top lines to outduel that of the Hurricanes and get them on the board with some goals.
Hurricanes keys to victory
Sitting in third place in the Metropolitan Division, the Hurricanes are off to a solid start in 2022-23. Through 16 games, the Hurricanes have 21 points, with a 10-5-1 record. The team is 6-4 in its last 10 games, which is a figure they’d like to improve upon, but is coming off a dominant 3-0 shutout victory over the Chicago Blackhawks, as well as a 7-2 beatdown of the Edmonton Oilers.
In their recent matchup vs. Colorado, the Canes were bested 4-1. But they’ll be determined to flip the script when the series returns to their home ice. Thursday’s tilt is set to take place at PNC Arena, where the Hurricanes have only played six of their 16 this year. In their small sample at home, the Hurricanes are 4-2 on the year. Last season at home, the Hurricanes had an outstanding 29-8-4 record.
Carolina’s offense has been somewhat lackluster in 2022-23 thus far. Scoring 50 goals through 16 games, the Canes are averaging just 3.12 goals per contest. They’ve surrendered 43 goals, an average of 2.68 per game, once again relying on their defensive prowess to pick up wins. The offseason acquisition of Brent Burns has made a significant difference, as he’s impacting the game both offensively and defensively on a nightly basis.
Andrei Svechnikov has gotten off to a scalding hot start to the season, with 18 points including 12 goals in his first 16 games. He ranks third in the NHL in goals, behind only Edmonton’s Connor McDavid and Vancouver’s Bo Horvat. Martin Necas leads the team with 19 points, while Sebastian Aho is in third on the team with 17. It’s the defensive presence of Jacob Slavin and Burns, as well as Brady Skjei and Brett Pesce that will make the difference for Carolina on Thursday night.
These two teams match up well in terms of their strengths, and it should be a battle on both ends of the ice. The true test will come down to Carolina’s defense vs. Colorado’s offense, which will dictate the outcome of the game. I’m expecting the two teams to be neck and neck, but Carolina’s defense to have the edge. The pick here is Carolina Hurricanes Money Line at -125.
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