Xam’s Daily Gems 2-18

Xam’s Daily Gems 2-18

Xam’s Daily Gems 2-18 150 150 The Ultimate Lineup

Xam’s Daily Gems:

East Carolina Money Line -132

Tulane is coming into this game having lost 5 of their last 6 games. That’s a bad combination when you consider how bad their defense has been recently. They’re giving up an average of 82 points in their last 11 games. They score and give up a ton of points. East Carolina will need to score to win this game, and there’s nothing to suggest a team struggling will go on the road and shut them down. They’ve lost 4 straight games on the road as well. Slowing down the offense led by Kevin Cross will be key. East Carolina will need a big game from RJ Felton to have a shot in this game. The style of play and recent play favors East Carolina in this one. If East Carolina can put up some offense in this game, they should edge out Tulane with the home crowd behind them.

UAB Money Line -134

UAB has won 4 of their last 5 games, combining solid defense with timely offense. Yaxel Lendeborg, Eric Gaines, and Javian Davis are the most important pieces for UAB, and they’ll need them to overcome North Texas today. North Texas has been struggling recently, losing 4 of their last 5 games. The key for UAB will be covering Jason Edwards. The guard for North Texas has scored 30 points in 3 of his last 5 games. If UAB can slow him down, it’ll go a long way for them getting the win today. UAB doesn’t have the best defense, but they’re 10-3 at home this season. North Texas relies on defense to win, which is good for UAB because they have better offensive talent and don’t play great defense. UAB should be able to score a little bit in this one. If they can play some defense, UAB should be able to continue their run of good play at home and get to 11-3 at home this season.

Rangers Money Line -144

The Stadium Series continues! The Rangers have been scorching hot recently, winning 6 straight games. They’ve vaulted themselves into contention for the top seed in the Eastern Conference. They’ve been playing well offensively and they’ve also been getting better defense and goalie play recently. The Islanders, meanwhile, have been plagued by inconsistency this season. The Islanders are scoring less than 3 goals per game this season. In a game against the high powered offense of the Rangers, that’s not going to work. In their last 10 games, the Rangers are averaging 3.5 goals per game. The Rangers are playing with more confidence and simply have the better offense in this game. The Islanders have been giving up their fair share of goals this season. If the Rangers can keep up their defensive intensity and contain Matthew Barzal, Andres Lee, and Bo Horvat, the Rangers should be able to continue their run of offensive success and keep their winning streak going.

SMU 1st Half Money Line -176

Both of these teams are coming into this game with high powered offenses.  However, SMU has the better defense in this game. They’re giving up just 65 points per game this season. SMU has won 5 straight games and is firing on all cylinders right now. The Tigers have lost 3 of their last 4 road games and SMU has been dominant at home, with a 12-2 record in front of the home crowd. SMU also has plenty of depth. Zhuric Phelps and Chuck Harris lead the way for this team, but they have a wide cast of rotational players that makes it hard on the opposing team. If SMU can begin the game with their trademark defense, the offense should get them off to a fast start and get them into the half with the lead.

Penguins Money Line -130

The Kings have been playing a lot recently. This will be their 2nd straight game after an overtime game yesterday, their 3rd game in 4 days, and their 4th game since February 13th. The Penguins, on the other hand, haven’t played since February 15th and have only played 2 games since February 10th, so they should be well rested for this game. The Penguins have one of the best defenses in the league, giving up just 2.68 goals per game this season. The issue for Pittsburgh has been their offense this year. They’re scoring less than 3 goals per game this season, and they’ll need to score to win this game. Simply put, if the Penguins want to get back into the playoff race, they’ll need to win games like this today. Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and the offense need to lead the way on this one. If they can get some offensive production, they should be able to get the job done against a tired opponent.

Avalanche 60 Min Money Line -170

The Avs are one of the best teams in the league, and they’re facing a Coyotes team in complete freefall. The Coyotes have lost 8 straight and have looked uncompetitive for large portions of this stretch. They’ve also been bad on the road this year, going 8-14-4 away from home. They’re giving up over 3 goals per game, and that’s a bad combination against a dominant scoring team like the Avalanche, who have a whopping 205 goals on the year! They’re tied for the 2nd most goals in the Western Conference. Unfortunately for Arizona, they’re also not scoring much. They’re scoring well under 3 goals per game on the year. The Avs give up their share of goals, but they should be able to contain a meager Arizona offense. The Avs have gone 4-5-1 in their last 10 games and have fallen to 4th in the Western Conference. This has the makings of a get right game for the Avs. They have only played one game since February 13th, have been dominant at home, and have better players across the board.

UCLA Money Line -134

Utah has been struggling lately, having lost 3 straight games. Now, they have to go on the road to face one of hottest teams in the nation. They’ve been a great home team this year. Utah has also been terrible on the road in conference play, with an 0-6 record. Overall, Utah has lost 5 of their last 6 games. They’re just not playing with a ton of confidence right now. UCLA surely has revenge on their mind after getting rolled by the Utes earlier in the year. Playing without confidence and a 1-6 road record is a bad combination. UCLA needs to be active on the boards. Utah knows how to rebound the ball on both offense and defense. UCLA will also need to score quite a bit to win this game. Utah is averaging 78 points per game this year, so UCLA will need to be ready defensively. It’s a good thing this is a defensive minded team giving up bout 64 points per game on average. Guys like Sebastian Mack and Adem Bona will need to bring it offensively as well. If UCLA can put some points on the board, they should be able to play enough defense to get the win in front of the home crowd.

Adam Fox Over 1.5 Shots on Goal -132

Fox hasn’t taken many shots recently, as he only has 2 shots in his last 5 games. However, the Rangers have been strong offensively recently and this is a game that can feature a ton of shooting, just like we saw in last night’s game between the Flyers and Devils. Fox knows how to shoot. In the month of January, he scored 5 goals and averaged 2 shots on goal per game. The Islanders are also a poor defensive team, having given up 177 goals this season. The Rangers should have control of the puck for large portions of this game and get plenty of shots off for everyone. Even in February, Fox has been active on offense, with 6 assists already this month. Expect him to continue playing a meaningful role on offense in a game that may have more offense than people expect.

Bo Horvat Over 2.5 Shots on Goal -144

Horvat has been a shooting machine recently, going over this number in 9 straight games. In that stretch, he has 6 games with 4 or more shots on goal. The Islanders are coming into this game as an underdog and in a game that they’ll need to score in to win. Horvat will need to be active on offense for his team to have a shot. He played over 25 minutes in his last game, one of his highest usage rates of the year. He’s also well rested coming into this game, having not played since February 13th. It’s all shaping up to be a nice day for Horvat.

Brock Nelson Over 2.5 Shots on Goal -132

Nelson has gone over this line in 6 of his last 7 games. He has multiple games with 5 and 6 shots on goal, which shows the level of confidence he has. Everything that is true for Bo Horvat is true for Nelson here. Game script can easily see the Islanders down and having to play catch up against an elite Rangers offense but inconsistent defense. His usage should go up as well considering the team hasn’t played since February 13th.

Clayton Keller Over 2.5 Shots on Goal -118

Keller is one of the main offensive weapons for a team completely devoid of offensive personnel. However, there’s a few things going in Keller’s favor tonight. His team needs him to shoot tonight. The Coyotes will likely be down early and often tonight and they’ll be facing a team that is iffy defensively. For all their success this year, the Avalanche are giving up 3.23 goals per game on the year. The game total of 6.5 also suggests there can be a good amount of action in this one. If the Avs get off to a fast start like they should, the Coyotes will need to shoot early and often to keep up. That plays right into the hands of the rightwinger who is averaging 2.88 shots on goal er game this year.

Lawson Crouse Over 1.5 Shots on Goal -174

Crouse is averaging 2.23 Shots on Goal per game this season. He’s had 2 or more SoGs in 5 straight games and 6 of his last 7. In February he’s been shooting even more, with 14 SoGs in 5 games so far. Once again, this is a game that can feature plenty of scoring chances and the Coyotes will need all of their limited offensive talent to stay in this game. Back in late December, in Colorado, Crouse had 3 shots on goal in a 4-1 loss. It can be a very similar game script today, which favors the shooters for Arizona.