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NHL Picks: May 12

By Zack Phillips

The Edmonton Oilers were gifted what should have been a fairly easy first round matchup for them entering the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Facing off against n LA Kings team that had no expectations of immediate success with an aging and beaten up goaltender in Jonathan Quick, losing their up and coming young stud in Quintin Byfield, and their cornerstone, Norris Trophy defenseman in Drew Doughty… everything was coming up Oilers.

Yet, heading back to LA for Game 6, Connor McDavid and the Oilers find themselves facing elimination fresh off the announcement that their own number 1 defenseman will have to miss the game due to a suspension for head-butting Philip Danault. With an already weak defensive group headlined by Cody Ceci, Tyson Barrie, and a way past-his-prime Duncan Keith, the Oilers ability to prevent the LA Kings from creating offensive opportunities is at an all-time low. This is exactly what Edmonton DID NOT need heading into an elimination game when their starting goaltender, Mike Smith, has struggled to keep the puck out of the net when it matters most (5GP - 2.81GAA). 

Although the Oilers will look to respond defensively after being called out by their Captain, Connor McDavid, following their 5-4 OT loss in Game 4 stating “We scored four tonight. That needs to be enough in a playoff game, obviously, it’s not.” which you can be certain will be taken to heart by this group, but is there really anything they can even do about it?

Despite McDavid’s comments, I have no faith in the Oilers ability to rebound against the Kings. LA is a fiery group with veteran players like Anze Kopitar and Dustin Brown who have been there, done that. The Kings are also operating under no pressure, as they were completely counted out in this series, and now they head home to LA with an opportunity to eliminate the Oilers in 6 games. Add onto this the fact that they have emerging young talent in players like Adrian Kempe, Sean Durzi, and Trevor Moore, who have shown up and displayed tremendous poise and determination to win, the Kings seem to have the upper hand in this matchup.

As much as I think McDavid and Draisaitl will give everything they’ve got to avoid elimination, they’re going to have to go through two of the best shutdown centers in the NHL with Anze Kopitar and Philip Danault, and a goaltender in Jonathan Quick who has the ability to stand on his head and steal games (quite unlike their own goaltender).

This is why I’ll be taking the Los Angeles Kings Moneyline (+125) at Sports Interaction

One of betstamp’s largest brand values is transparency. Whether you are looking to tail or fade my picks, or potentially just like reading the breakdowns, you can find my full documented betting record here. Best of luck with your bets today.

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