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NHL Hockey: Los Angeles Kings vs San Jose Sharks - Preview, Odds and Prediction - 04/09/2021

by Big Al Staff

Friday, Apr 09, 2021

Friday NHL Preview: Los Angeles versus San Jose. Los Angeles visits San Jose tonight in a battle of two West Division teams fighting for their playoff lives. The puck drops at 10:38 PM ET.The Kings ended a three-game losing streak with a 4-3 win against Arizona on Wednesday. Los Angeles got a goal from Jaret Anderson-Dolan in the first period but entered the third period trailing, 3-1. Goals from Adrian Kempe and Jeff Carter deadlocked the score before Carl Grundstrom scored the game-winner at the 6:05 minute mark. Jonathan Quick made 24 saves in the victory. Todd McClellan is likely to turn back to Calvin Petersen as his goaltender tonight. Quick has not started in two straight games for the Kings since mid-February. Petersen has a 7-9-4 record this season with a 2.57 goals-against-average and a .923 save percentage. The 26-year old has started three of the last five games for Los Angeles. Center Anze Kopitar leads the team with 40 points coming from eight goals and 32 assists. Defenseman Drew Doughty has scored eight goals with 22 assists. Right wing Alex Iafallo is third on the team with 23 points from nine goals and 14 assists. Despite the win on Tuesday, the Kings have lost six of their last eight games. With 36 points to date from their 15-17-6 record, Los Angeles is in seventh place in the West, seven points behind Arizona for the fourth and final playoff spot from the division. This contest is just their second game on the road in a stretch of eight games which concludes with a two-game homestand against Vegas next week.San Jose had their four-game winning streak end with a 5-1 loss at home to Anaheim on Tuesday. The Sharks fell behind, 2-0 before Patrick Marleau scored on a power play to pull his team within one goal. The Ducks scored the final three goals for the victory. Martin Jones stopped 29 shots in the defeat. He has a 14-8-2 record with a 3.08 goals-against-average and a .904 save percentage. He has made five straight starts so it is not likely that Doug Wilson will opt for backup Devan Dubnyk against the Kings. Jones has a 5-1-0 record against Los Angeles this season with a 2.37 goals-against-average and a .932 save percentage. Left wing Evander Kane leads the Kings with 33 points from 16 goals and 17 assists. Center Logan Couture adds 14 goals and 11 assists. Center Tomas Hertl has another 11 goals and 13 assists to rank third on the team with 24 points. San Jose has won six of their last nine to rise to sixth place in the West and pull within five points of Arizona. Their 17-17-4 record gives them 38 points. This contest is the second game of a five-game homestand for the Sharks. They will likely still be without defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic who is questionable with an upper-body injury. This showdown is the first of a two-game series between these two teams, who will play tomorrow night in Los Angeles. BetAnySports lists San Jose as a -124 money line favorite, with the total set at 5.5.Computer prediction:  San Jose Sharks 3 Los Angeles Kings 2

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Big Al's Daily Angle: MLB, NHL, NBA and EPL Previews and Odds - 04/09/2021

by Big Al Staff

Friday, Apr 09, 2021

The Friday sports card features action in the NBA, NHL, MLB, and English Premier League.The NBA has nine games on the docket. The card begins at 7 PM ET, with Indiana playing at Orlando. Memphis travels to New York at 7:30 PM ET. The Grizzlies are a -1.5 point road favorite with the total set at 213.5 (all odds from BetOnline). Boston hosts Minnesota as a -8.5 point favorite with an over/under of 228. Philadelphia visits New Orleans at 8 PM ET. Atlanta plays at home against Chicago as a 3.5-point favorite with a total of 227.5. Charlotte plays at Milwaukee, and Denver hosts San Antonio at 9 PM ET. Golden State is at home against Washington at 10 PM ET as a 4.5-point favorite with an over/under of 240.5. The Los Angeles Clippers hosts Houston as a 13.5-point favorite with a total of 226.Seven games are on the NHL slate. Three games begin the schedule at 7 PM ET. The New York Islanders host the New York Rangers as a -121 money line favorite with an over/under of 5.5. Pittsburgh visits New Jersey as a -180 money line road favorite with a total of 6. Washington travels to Buffalo as a -240 money line road favorite with an over/under of 6. At 8 PM ET, on the NHL Network, Minnesota plays at St. Louis as a -112 money line road favorite, with a total of 5.5. Vegas is at home against Arizona at 10 PM ET. The Golden Knights are a -220 money line favorite with an over/under of 5.5. Colorado travels to Anaheim as a -340 money line road favorite with a total of 6. San Jose hosts Los Angeles at 10:30 PM ET as a -120 money line favorite with an over/under of 5.5.Nine games are on the MLB slate. The opening pitch is at 3:10 PM ET, with the New York Yankees playing at Tampa Bay as a -130 money line road favorite with a total of 8.5. The Los Angeles Dodgers host Washington at 4:10 PM ET as a -270 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. San Francisco is at home against Colorado at 4:35 PM ET as a -152 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. The Los Angeles Angels visit Toronto at 7:07 PM ET. Cleveland is at home against Detroit at 7:10 PM ET as a -183 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. Atlanta plays at home against Philadelphia at 7:20 PM ET as a -125 money line favorite with a total of 8. San Diego visits Texas at 8:05 PM ET as a -185 money line road favorite with an over/under of 9. Houston is at home against Oakland at 8:10 PM ET as a -170 money line favorite with the total at 9. Cincinnati plays at Arizona at 9:40 PM ET as a -131 money line road favorite with an over/under of 9.Matchweek 31 of the English Premier League begins on Friday, with Fulham hosting Wolverhampton at 3 PM ET. The Cottagers are a -0.25 favorite against the Wolves, with the total set at 2. The NBC Peacock app has the broadcast.

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PGA Golf: The Masters Championship - Preview, Odds and Prediction - 04/08/2021

by Big Al Staff

Thursday, Apr 08, 2021

The Masters Championship Preview: April 8th, 2021The 85th Masters Championship returns to its traditional April weekend this week after last year’s tournament got delayed until November because of the COVID shutdown. Dustin Johnson returns as the defending champion after breaking a course record by two strokes with his 20 under par to win the event. Johnson is the favorite to win this tournament again at +900 odds (all odds from BetOnline). Johnson has won five victories in the last ten months, but he has not in his top form as of late. Johnson had registered six top-10s in a row before winning the Masters in November. This time around, Johnson finished in 54th place at the World Golf Championships event at the Concessions before a tie for 48th place at the Player’s Championship and a tie for 28th place at the World Gold Championship match play event two weeks ago. Only Tiger Woods has scored better than Johnson in the last two Masters Championships, with Johnson finishing second in the spring of 2019.Bryson DeChambeau is +1000 to win going into Thursday morning. After winning the US Open last fall, DeChambeau claimed that his par for Augusta National was 68. He finished tied for 34th place that week. DeChambeau won the Arnold Palmer Invitational in early March before finishing tied for third place at the Player’s Championship a week later. DeChambeau has never placed better than 21st in his four appearances at this tournament. Justin Thomas is +1000 to win the tournament as well. Thomas won the Player’s Championship in March after shooting 12 under par on the weekend at TPC Sawgrass. He has made all five cuts in his previous trips to Augusta, with his fourth place in November being his best result. Jordan Spieth is +1000 to with the tournament, with bettors pushing his number down after winning the Valero Texas Open last weekend. The former number one player in the world has rediscovered his game with four top-four results since February. Spieth won the 2015 Masters, and he has finished in third place or better four times. Jon Rahm is +1200 to win this week. Rahm is a new father as of Sunday, and he hopes he can experience the same magic that Daniel Willet did when he won the Masters as a new father in 2016. Rahm has been the model of consistency with top-ten finishes in seven of his last nine events. He has finished in the top ten at the Masters in three straight appearances, including his tie for seventh place last November.Rory McIlroy comes in at a +1800 price. He finished in a tie for 28th place at the World Golf Championship match-play event two weeks ago after missing the cut at the Player’s Championship. McIlroy blames his recent form on being too aggressive with his driver after witnessing DeChambeau’s recent success. He has since hired a new driving coaching. McIlroy has six straight top-ten finishes at Augusta National since 2014.Patrick Cantlay is a +2200 favorite. He has eight top-20 finishes this season, with a win at the Zozo Championship and second place at The American Express. Cantlay finished tied for ninth place in 2019 after leading on Sunday before a tie for 17th place last November. Xander Schauffele is a +2500 favorite. His last event was a tie for 18th place at the World Golf Championship match-play event two weeks ago. Schauffele followed up a tie for 2nd place at the Masters in 2019 with a tie for 17th place in November. Brooks Koepka is a +2800 favorite. He returns to action for the first time in six weeks after having surgery on his right knee a month ago. He had previously finished in second place in 2021 at the World Golf Championship event at the Concessions. Koepka finished in a tie for second place at the 2019 Masters before a tie for seventh place in November. Collin Morikawa is a +2800 favorite. He won the PGA Championship last year, and he has since won the World Golf Championship event at the Concession. This event is his second Masters after finishing in 44th place in November. ESPN and ESPN+ broadcast the Masters on Thursday and Friday. ESPN+ has the early coverage on the weekend before CBS takes over on both days.Prediction:  Rory McIlroy (+1800) to win The Masters Championship.

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