Vegas Golden Knights is a one of the most underrated teams this season. Of course, this is a new team and we didn’t know what to expect from them.
But after one month and a half, they are still there. They are 5th best based on points this season, and they are very good scoring team. Bettors still don’t believe them and I also think, that they can not keep this performance until the end of the season (or maybe I am wrong). Because they are underrated, they are also one of the most profitable teams so far. If you bet on Vegas Golden Knight this season with 1 unit per game, they would make you a profit of +7.1 units. On the other side if you bet on Edmonton, you would make a loss on -9 units this season.
We are not talking about who has better players or who is better team, but we are looking at this game from betting perspective. And Vegas Golden Knights are money so far.
My betting model projected odds and bookmakers odds
Bookmakers opened Vegas as an underdog of +170 (2.70) or even more. But during the day, the odds dropped slowly and right now we can get the best odds at Bitcoinrush at 2.62.
I have projected, that Vegas Golden Knights will have around 66% of chance to win this game. Because of this, my fair odds on the would be around -200 or 1.50 decimal odds. This is pretty big difference between my odds and bookmakers odds. Of course it is always recommended to take other information and even common sense into account, but this is what my betting model has.
Is there any reason for such numbers?
Vegas Golden Knights score 3.56 goals per game, Edmonton scores only 2.24. Vegas allows 2.88 goals per game and Edmonton allows 3.08 goals per game. According to my numbers, I rank Vegas as 19% better than league average offence and I rank Edmonton as 22% weaker than league average team in offence. I rank Vegas as 1% weaker defence than league average (xDEFx = 101) and I rank Edmonton as 6% weaker than league average defence (xDEFx = 106).
As you see, no matter which names are in the team, Vegas Golden Knights are simply playing better this season.
Special teams are also on Vegas side as they have 12th ranked power play (20.31%) and 12th ranked penalty kill (81.48%). Edmonton on the other side is just 24th ranked in power play (14.89%) and 30th ranked in penalty kill (71.43%).
Those are just facts from this season.
I like Vegas how they play, but they have 2 weak points. The first is weakness is their goalies. They have first three goalies injured and because of that they start with Maxim Legace. Lagace sits on 3.58 GAA and .876 SV% so far and is playing 7th consecutive game. On one side, this is very risky option, but on the other side this guy, who would probably not play this season, will get a lot of experience and I believe, that he knows, that this is his chance. With this I want to say, that he can be only better from game to game.
But still, Edmonton has much better and more experienced goalie with cam Talbot, who will start today. His SV% is 0.911 and in November he posted SV% of 0.921, which is even better.
So we have a goalie with SV% of 0.876 and we have a goalie with SV% of 0.911.
The second weakness by Vegas is their road performance. They are just 3-5 on the road, while at the same time they have outstanding home record of 7-1 at home. This road results came from their trip to the East where they faced couple of good teams.
What I like about Vegas and what is Edmonton weakness
Vegas lost 5 out of last 7 games and most of those games were on the road. Despite their negative record in this short period, they still play good ice hockey. In last 5 games, they outplayed other teams by +2 shots per game and +0.2 goals per game. In last 5 games they have 3 losses, but all those losses were in very close games and by only one goal. In all those games, Vegas had a chance and the record could be easily 5-0 in last 5 games. Some of those games I watched. I simply like how they play and I like, that they are very underrated team by bettors and also by bookmakers (+7.1 units).
Edmonton on the other side is still little bit overrated team. Yes, they have a lot of talent and we all expected much more from them. But they are not playing well at home. They have the record of 3-6 in at home and if we check their current performance, they score only 1.6 goals per game in last 5 games. They won 2 of 5 games and both games by only 1 goal and they lost 3 games, where two were by 2 goals or more. One of their main weaknesses is their shot % (5.3% in last 5 games) and their special teams. I think that their weakness is simply playing as a team. Vegas is more balanced team, where the player with most points collected only 9.86% of his team points. On the other side Edmonton Oilers rely a lot on one player – Connor Mcdavid. he collected 18.44% of all points for his team.
Vegas will play without Luca Sbisa in this game and they will miss him for sure. He is third most important player according to point shares. However, no matter how I adjust those numbers I still get Vegas as a value bet here.
Vegas is also missing Clarkson, Grabowksi and Stoner, but they are already out and current season performance by Vegas is not affected by those players. They are also missing first three goalies.
Edmonton is missing Sekera, Slepyshev and Caggiula is questionable. None of these players is very important factor for this game.
Interesting trends and other information
Edmonton is 20-9 on one day rest. Edmonton is 24-56 in their last 80 against winning teams (above 0.600, Vegas). Over is 10-3 in last 13 games in Edmonton. Over is also 7-2 in last 9 Vegas Golden Knights game.
Conclusion and my recommended pick:
Edmonton is a team with a lot of talent, especially with McDavid they have one of the best players in the world, but he can not do everything alone. Draisaitl, Nugent-Hopkins and Maroon are playing better, but this is still not enough to be such a favourite at home against a team, that is 5th best in the league based on points and are coming to this game after they beat Winnipeg by 5-2.
If we ignore the names and if we focus on the facts, Vegas score more, they have also better defence and they have better special teams. Yes, they have weaker goalie, which is of course a risky option and yes, they have negative record on the road, which I don’t like. But isn’t this price little bit too big on them? They are one of the most underrated team this season. After all if you bet blindly on them in every single game, you would make +7.1 units and if you would bet blindly on Edmonton on every single game, you would make a loss of 9 units.
Despite better goalie and home field advantage I think, that Edmonton should not be such a favourite against Vegas here. This is why I think that we have a value with Edmonton. I think the bookmakers were right to drop odds on Vegas, because we have a nice underdog for a very good price.
The best odds on this game today you will find at Bitcoinrush.
RECOMMENDED PLAY: VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS +162 (decimal 2.62) at Bitcoinrush