Big Al's Daily Angle: WNBA, NHL and Soccer Previews and Odds - 10/13/2021

by Big Al Staff

The Wednesday sports card features action in the WNBA, NHL, and World Cup qualifying matches. 

The second game of the WNBA finals takes place on ESPN at 9 PM ET. Chicago won the opener of this best-of-five series with their 91-77 upset victory at Phoenix as a 3-point underdog on Sunday. Kahleah Cooper led all scorers with 21 points, and she added ten rebounds for the Sky. Allie Quigley added 18 points, and former Finals Most Valuable Player Candace Parker contributed 16 points, eight rebounds, and three assists in the victory. The Mercury got 20 points and six rebounds from Brittney Griner. The backcourt of Diana Taurasi and Skylar Diggins-Smith combined for 32 points on 10 of 19 shooting. Phoenix is a 4-point favorite with the total set at 169 (all odds from DraftKings unless indicated otherwise). 

Five games are on the National Hockey League docket. Toronto hosts Montreal at 7:08 to begin the card. The Maple Leafs lost to the Canadiens in their seven-game opening-round playoff series last season after taking a 3-1 lead after the first four games. Auston Matthews is out for at least the first three games of the season with a wrist injury. Mitch Marner is questionable with an upper-body injury. Montreal lost to Tampa Bay in the Stanley Cup finals in five games. They lost Phillip Danault and Jesperi Kotkaniemi in free agency in the offseason but added forward Mike Hoffman from St. Louis. Goaltender Carey Price is not with the team after entering the league’s 30-day mental health leave program. Toronto is a -180 money line favorite with an over/under of 6.

Washington plays at home against the New York Rangers on TNT at 7:38 PM ET. The Capitals lost in five games in the opening round of the playoffs last year to Boston. Nicklas Backstrom is out with a hip injury, and Alex Ovechkin is questionable with a lower-body injury. The Rangers begin their new era under head coach Gerard Gallant after missing the playoffs last season. The former Vegas Golden Knights coach will have former Tampa Bay Lightning forward Barclay Goodrow, who the team signed in free agency. Washington is a -130 money line favorite with a total of 6.

Three games start at 10:08 PM ET. Winnipeg travels to Anaheim. The Jets got swept by Montreal in the second round of the playoffs last season. They will be without Mark Scheifele tonight, who continues to serve the suspension he incurred in that series. The Ducks missed the playoffs last year. Winnipeg is a -150 money line road favorite with an over/under of 5.5. 

Colorado is at home against Chicago on TNT. The Avalanche lost to Vegas in the West Division finals in six games. They lost goaltender Phillip Grubauer to the Seattle Kraken in free agency in the offseason. The Aves signed goalie Darcy Kuemper from Arizona to take his spot. Nathan MacKinnon is out for tonight after a positive COVID test. The Blackhawks acquired former Golden Knights goalie Marc-Andre Fleury in a trade with Vegas to become their new number one goaltender. Chicago also added defenseman Seth Jones from Columbus and forward Tyler Johnson from Tampa Bay. Colorado is a -210 money line favorite with a total of 6. 

Edmonton hosts Vancouver in a battle of Pacific Division foes. The Oilers got swept in the opening round of the playoffs against Winnipeg. They added forward depth in Zach Hyman, Warren Foegele, and Derek Ryan in free agency to support Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. The Canucks missed the playoffs last year in a season racked by COVID postponements. They added defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson in the offseason. Forward Brock Boeser is out tonight with an injury. Edmonton is a -185 money line favorite with an over/under of 6.5.

The World Cup qualification matches for CONCACAF teams continue on Wednesday with four games. The USMNT plays at Lower.com Field in Columbus, Ohio, against Costa Rica on ESPN2 at 7 PM ET. The Stars and Stripes are a -1 goal line favorite with a total of 2.5. (all soccer odds from Play MGM). Canada plays at home against Panama at 7:30 PM ET. Honduras is at home against Jamaica at 8:05 PM ET as a -0.5 goal line favorite with an over/under of 2. Mexico visits El Salvador at 10:10 PM ET as a -1 goal line road favored with a total of 2.5.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

© 2021 Al McMordie's BigAl.com. All Rights Reserved.