Two teams that are out of the playoff picture hookup in Raleigh tonight and while the points might not matter; there are jobs on the line for a good number of these players.
The Carolina Hurricanes (-115) are small moneyline favorites on the NHL odds board and the total for this contest is set at 5.5 Over (-120). Philadelphia has won 20 of the past 26 meetings between these teams including a 14-2 record since Dec. 6, 2008.
In two meetings this season the Flyers outscored Carolina 9-6 and the last 12 trips to Raleigh, Philly holds a 10-2 advantage with 5 overs and 7 unders. One reputable sports information site shows more than 95-percent action for tonight’s game rolling in on the “Over”.
Steve Mason gets the start for Philadelphia and he’s been alright since coming over from Columbus but that’s only compared with Ilya Bryzgalov’s terrible numbers. It appears ‘Bryzy’ has been exposed by Philadelphia’s wide open forechecking system and his stellar numbers built from years under Dave Tippett in Phoenix have bloated throughout this season. Mason is 4-0 against the Canes with a 1.50 goals against average (GAA).
Justin Peters will go for Carolina and while he’s shown steady improvement as a last resort, Peters has just one win in his last seven starts.
Philly is a fast starting team and in 22 road games the Flyers have scored 23 goals while allowing 27. Carolina has 18 goals for in 21 home games with 17 goals against. The first period line for this game is 1.5 Over (-115).
There is some question as to whether Philadelphia players could start to ‘mail it in’ after being mathematically eliminated but with a head coaching change looming during the off-season, these players know what the top brass is looking for upstairs. Lack of effort could easily translate to walking paper during the off-season.
We like the value on Philadelphia for this contest and also recommend checking out your online sportsbook odds for the first period total. In two meetings this year these teams combined for seven first period goals.
Take Philly (-105) to win and take Philly-Carolina Over 1.5 goals through the first 20 minutes.