Slumping LA Kings to Beat Nashville Predators on Thursday

  • What: Nashville Predators vs. LA Kings
  • Date: Thursday, January 18, 2024
  • Location: Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, CA
  • Time: 10:00 p.m. ET
  • How to Watch: ESPN+, Hulu

Two Western Conference clubs who are in the hunt for a spot in the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs meet tonight at Crypto.com Arena when the Los Angeles Kings play host to the Nashville Predators. The Kings sport a 21-12-8 record on the 2024 NHL season and sit in third place in the Pacific Division. Meanwhile, the Predators are 24-19-1 ahead of tonight’s matchup. Nashville is in fourth place in the Central Division.

The Nashville Predators started the 2024 NHL season with a new coach in Andrew Brunette. The club struggled early in the season, going 5-10-1 through November 14. Things clicked after that, and the Preds rattled off six straight wins after ending a four-game losing skid. The club has returned to Earth since December 19 with a 6-6-1 record. Nashville is coming off a 4-1 road loss to the Vegas Golden Knights. The club is 11-8-1 on the road.

The LA Kings finished the 2023 NHL season with a 47-25-10 record, which put the team in the No. 5 spot in the Western Conference. The Edmonton Oilers defeated the Kings 4-2 in the first round of the 2023 NHL playoffs. LA has yet to win a playoff series since they captured the Stanley Cup in 2014. The Kings are slumping. The team ended a 1-5-4 in its past 10 outings.

Before we look at the betting breakdown for the Western Conference matchup between the Nashville Predators and the LA Kings, check out our betting picks to win the 2024 Stanley Cup and our tips for betting on the NHL.

Nashville Predators vs. LA Kings betting picks – January 18, 2024

BovadaPuck LineMoney LineTotal
Nashville Predators+1.5 (-195)+133Ov 6 (-105)
Los Angeles Kings-1.5 (+165)-155Un 6 (-115)

Nashville Predators betting breakdown

Filip Forsberg has been with the Predators for his entire career. A former first-round draft pick of the Washington Capitals, Forsberg was traded to the Predators before he played his first NHL game. The 29-year-old had his best career season in 2022, scoring 42 goals and 42 assists in 69 games for the club. Forsberg started this year on pace to break the 100-point mark for the first time. He has lost some momentum, but the club leader in points (48) and goals (22) is still on pace to break his career-high points total in 2024. Ryan O’Reilly, who is also on pace to get close to his career high in points (77 in 2018-19 with the St. Louis Blues), is second in team scoring with 38 points.

Juuse Saros has played the majority of games in the Nashville net. The 28-year-old is having the worst statistical year of his career. Saros enters tonight’s game with a 17-16-a record, a 3.02 goals against average and a .900 save percentage on the 2024 NHL season.

The Predators rank 17th in goals per game this season with 3.11. However, the club allows an average of 3.14 goals per game. Like last season, where the team missed the Stanley Cup playoffs, Nashville has a negative goal differential. That’s something the club needs to fix if they hope to make the playoffs.

Nashville has the No. 18 power play in the league (20.5 percent), and the team ranks 24th in penalty kill percentage (77.1).

Nashville Predators TO BEAT LA KINGS
★★★★★
+134
Bet now

LA Kings betting breakdown

The Kings had a good start to the 2024 season, but things have changed since the calendar flipped from 2023 to 2024. The club is 1-5-4 in its past 10 outings and they haven’t won more than two games in a row since they went 3-0 in early December. The Kings have been in close games during their slump, with four OT contests and two other matchups being decided by one goal. If there are positives in this situation, they are that the team is still in a position to make the 2024 NHL Playoffs and that they are facing adversity now and not at the end of the season.

Anze Kopitar leads the team in points with 39, Trevor Moore is the top goal scorer with 20, and Kevin Fiala has the most assists with 27. Adrian Kempe is second on the team in scoring with 38 points.

Goaltending could be a concern for the team, as Cam Talbot has not played more than 50 games in a season since 2018, and he’s on pace to play close to 60 in 2024. Talbot has played well so far, posting a 2.44 goals against average to go with a .915 save percentage. Backup goalie Pheonix Copley is out for the season following ACL surgery. With Copley out, David Rittich will serve as the backup. He has a 3-0-1 record, a 1.61 GAA, and a .932 SV%.

The Kings are 16th in the NHL on the power play (21.2 percent) and first in penalty kill at 87.2 percent. The team averages 3.27 goals per game and gives up an average of 2.56 goals per game.

LA KingsTO BEAT NASHVILLE PREDATORS
★★★★★
-150
Bet now

Nashville Predators vs. LA Kings betting trends

The Kings are 16-13 when they are the betting favorites during the 2024 NHL season. Meanwhile, the Predators have won 11 of 24 games where they have been the betting underdogs.

The Predators are 11-2-1 against the Kings dating back to the 2017-18 season. Two of the three games between the teams went into overtime last year, with the Kings winning one in the shootout (4-3) and the Predators winning the other in the shootout (2-1). The Predators won the other game 5-3.

Nashville Predators TO BEAT LA KINGS
★★★★★
+130
Bet now

Best bets for Nashville Predators vs. LA Kings

There’s no doubt that the LA Kings are struggling, but the club is not getting blown out during their downswing. With that in mind, look for them to play the Predators, who are having troubles on defense and goaltending, tough, especially in their home barn. The betting pick is for the LA Kings to beat the Nashville Predators.

LA KingsTO BEAT NASHVILLE PREDATORS
★★★★★
-155
Bet now

The Kings are sound defensively and have the advantage in goal in this matchup. Look for the Kings to grab the lead and shut down the Predators with that strong defense. The betting pick is for the teams to combine for under six goals.

Predators and KingsTO SCORE LESS THAN SIX GOAL
★★★★★
-108
Bet now

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Trent Reinsmith

Trent is a professional sports journalist specializing in UFC, MMA, and esports coverage. His work has been featured in prestigious publications such as USA Today Sports, Vice, Bloody Elbow, Fight! Magazine, UFC 360, and Narratively. Trent's connection to MMA dates back to the early days when he and his friends pooled their resources to purchase the pay-per-view broadcast of UFC 1. He also has extensive experience in esports, particularly League of Legends and Counter Strike, dating back to the game's launch.