Nashville Predators vs New Jersey Devils - Odds and Predictions

How to Watch

Where: Prudential Center – Newark, NJ.

When: Thursday, January 30, 7:30 PM EST

How (TV/Radio): TVA, NBC Sports | WFAN

Nashville Predators (Away)

Head Coach: John Hynes{All-Time 153-163-45 NSH, NJD}

Preds’ head coach John Hynes will be going up against his former club for the first time since his firing earlier this year. Not much has changed since his hiring, but the Predators are coming off of one of their biggest wins of the season, a 5-4 win over the Washington Capitals, which moved them into sixth in the Central division.

Offense

Strangely enough, for a team ranked so low in the standings, and known as a defensive team for most of their existence, the Nashville Predators have actually scored the 11th-most goals in the NHL this season. They have 151.

The amount of goals is a byproduct of how much this team shoots. Averaging 34 shots on goal per game, the Preds have the eighth-highest shot total this season. These numbers combined leave the with the 14th-ranked shooting percentage at 9.9 percent.

With all that said, Nashville has struggled mightily on the power play, converting on the man advantage just 16.67 percent of the time – good enough to be the league’s seventh-worst power-play unit. They have just 26 goals and have allowed six shorthanded goals against.

Defense

As mentioned earlier, the Nashville Predators have been know as a defensive team for many years, and they still are. However, the few weaknesses they have are glaring.

Surprisingly, one of the team’s biggest weaknesses has been their goaltending. Pekka Rinne has been uncharacteristically bad this season. The team allows, on average, 3.25 goals against per game, and the team has a combined save percentage of .891 – the league’s fourth-lowest.

The Preds also can’t kill penalties. They average almost ten minutes of penalty time per game and can’t kill them off. Nashville currently has the league’s worst penalty-killing unit. They have managed just a 73.43 percent.

Goaltending

It is expected that goaltender Pekka Rinne will get the start in net for game two of Nashville’s back-to-back stretch. Rinne has put together a season record of 16-11-3, a goals-against-average of 2.98, and a .897 save percentage. He has three shutouts this season as well as one goal!

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New Jersey Devils (Home)

Head Coach: Alain Nasreddine{All-Time 9-11-3 NJD}

The New Jersey Devils have most likely embraced the tank. Having already traded away their best player in Taylor Hall, expect the Devils to utilize the trade deadline for pieces that will contribute to their future rebuild. They are coming off of a shootout win against Ottawa but are just 4-5-1 over their last ten games.

Offense

Let’s face it: there isn’t much offense to talk about when it comes to the New Jersey Devils. For starters, only three teams (Detroit, Anaheim, and Los Angeles) have scored fewer goals this season than the Devils. They currently sit with 122 – 94 at even strength and 23 on the power play.

Speaking of that power play, the Devils have the league’s second-worst power-play unit behind only the Ottawa Senators. The team’s power-play percentage sits at 14.56 percent currently. That same power play has also allowed six shorthanded goals against.

New Jersey has the 11th-fewest shots on goal this season and has the NHL’s sixth-worst shooting percentage at just 8.5 percent. They also can’t win a faceoff to save their lives.

Defense

Defensively, things haven’t been much better. Starting with P.K. Subban. Not only is Subban having the worst season of his career since joining the team, but the Devils may not have him in the roster for this game as he is listed as day-to-day due to illness.

Currently sitting in the number-two spot for most goals allowed, 159 goals have been scored on New Jersey this season and the team has to league’s second-worst combined save percentage at .890.

However, despite averaging more penalty minutes per game than Nashville, the New Jersey Devils rank ahead of their opponents when it comes to penalty killing. With 79.4 percent, the Devils rank 19th in the league compared to Nashville who ranks 28th.

Goaltending

One of the few bright spots on the New Jersey roster is goaltender MacKenzie Blackwood, who is expected to get the start for the Devils Thursday night. Blackwood has gone 15-12-6 this season. His GAA is 2.95 and his save percentage is .906 – both of which rank higher than Pekka Rinne’s this season. Blackwood also has one shutout to his name this season.

These two teams last met back on December 7, 2019. The Nashville Predators came away from the high-scoring affair as the victors, beating the Devils by a final score of 6-4.

What’s at Stake?

These games are everything for Nashville. Although neither team is mathematically eliminated from the playoffs just yet, it is Nashville that has a better chance of securing a postseason berth. The team has star talent that just hasn’t hit the mark yet this season, but it’s not too late to turn things around. The addition of John Hynes behind the bench hasn’t had an immediate effect on the team but there is still hope.

Questions to Answer

Will the Nashville Predators be able to take advantage of how poorly the New Jersey Devils have played in their home arena (and any other arena, at that)? New Jersey is just 7-9-7 at the Prudential Center this season.

Can the Devils’ goalie MacKenzie Blackwood put up a strong showing against future hall-of-famer Pekka Rinne? Blackwood’s numbers are better than those of Rinne and it would be quite the feather in the cap of such a young goaltender.

Will New Jersey be able to gain any puck control in this matchup? Nashville has the fifth-highest ranked faceoff percentage compared to the Devils ranking of 29th.

Nashville Predators Injury Report

D Ryan Ellis – DL (upper-body)

F Colton Sissons – DL (lower-body)

New Jersey Devils Injury Report

D P.K. Subban – day-to-day (illness)

F Ben Street – DL (upper-body)

Nashville Predators vs New Jersey Devils Odds

The latest odds for Predators vs Jersey Devils are provided by bet365 NJ and 888Sport NJ. For more on betting in the NHL check out guide.

Money Line

SportsbookPredatorsJersey Devils
bet365 NJ-140+120
888Sport NJ-141+117
DraftKings-139+120

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