The Golden Knights return to the ice after a pair of postponed games in the Great White North left them with a bye week, their longest absence of the season even with the league-wide break last month. Las Vegas has lost 4 of their last 5 games and things don’t get any easier as they face a Pittsburgh Penguins team that has been at their best of late, winning 8 of their last 10 games. This will be Pittsburgh’s sixth and final stop on their road trip before returning to The Igloo to face Ottawa on Thursday.
The Penguins have won 3 of their 5 road games on this trip, though they have held the lead in all 5 games. Goalie Tristan Jarry has been stellar for the Penguins, posting a .929 save percentage and just a 2.05 GAA. Vegas’ offense has been inconsistent during their slump, and Jarry is arguably the toughest goalie they will face during the season at home. Robin Lehner is 1-2 since returning from injury and has a .898 save percentage, with one particular goal conceded to the Blackhawks’ Jujhar Khaira that could have easily been saved, and ended up being the difference in a 2-1 loss to Chicago.
Both teams are in the thick of the playoff race at the All Star break. These teams are nearly tied in points, as the Golden Knights sit atop the Pacific with 48 points and the Penguins are fourth in a high-scoring Metropolitan Division. The main question is whether Lehner has shaken off the rust with a few games under his belt and whether the 6-day break will help or hurt the Golden Knights, but it’s hard to ignore how much Pittsburgh has left in the tank after being on the road for nearly two weeks, and how much it has taken a toll on Sidney Crosby’s team.
Pick: Golden Knights (-110) and OVER 6.