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Golden Knights vs. Kraken Expert Pick – April 13th, 2023

Golden Knights vs. Kraken Expert Pick - April 13th, 2023

GOLDEN KNIGHTS VS. KRAKEN EXPERT PICK - APRIL 13TH, 2023 - This marks the end of the regular season, and one team’s motivation is clear in this matchup.

Vegas has a simple equation: win or get to overtime, and the Golden Knights wrap up the Pacific Division and the No. 1 overall seed in the Western Conference. Earning the top seed would give Vegas home-ice advantage until the Stanley Cup Finals, and the Golden Knights would get the most manageable first-round series in facing Winnipeg.

Seattle’s motivation is murkier. The Kraken know they’re in the playoffs, but their matchup is yet to be determined.

Right now, they sit in the first wild card spot, which would keep them away from Vegas and Edmonton until the conference finals.

Granted, they’d have to face Colorado and then either Dallas or Minnesota to get there, but on paper, that’s a more winnable matchup than either the Golden Knights or the Oilers.

Think Twice

And that’s why Seattle might want to think twice about winning this game.

If the Kraken do win and Los Angeles loses to Anaheim (which is admittedly unlikely), Seattle would move into the Pacific Division’s No. 3 spot. Instead of Colorado, the Kraken would either face an Edmonton team that’s beaten them three times and hit them for an average of five goals per night, or they’d have to beat Vegas again and do it in a seven-game series.

Unless the Kraken are really scared of the Avalanche — which they shouldn’t be, given that they beat Colorado two out of three — this might be a case where they back off and start preparing for that matchup.

Click here to read more analysis from Dan.

The Odds






Vegas Golden Knights

(50-22-9 SU,
42-39 PL)





Seattle Kraken

(46-27-8 SU, 48-33 PL)





Puck Drop

When: Thursday, April 13th at 10:30 pm EST

Where: Climate Pledge Arena, Seattle

Public Bets: 67% on Vegas

Public Money: 77% on Vegas

Odds courtesy of DraftKings, as of April 12th, 2023

Vegas vs. Seattle In-Season Trends

Even if the Kraken do go all out for the win, this hasn’t been a favorable matchup for Seattle.

In the battle of the NHL’s two newest teams, the Golden Knights have won six of seven meetings, and they’ve never lost at Climate Pledge Arena.

Seattle also hasn’t done much in terms of breaching the Vegas defense. In their past six matchups, the Golden Knights have held the Kraken to UNDER 2.5 goals five times. That includes earlier this week, in which Vegas bested Seattle 4-1 in Nevada.

That also underscores where Seattle sits in the Western Conference’s hierarchy and why losing this game wouldn’t be the worst thing for them.

The Kraken have done a great job going from expansion side to playoff team in just two years, but they’re not up to the level of the Western giants of Vegas and Edmonton.

Seattle’s a combined 2-5 against the Pacific heavyweights, and they’ve lost five straight against teams with a win percentage over .600. A win here would mean Seattle likely has to take out both of them just to reach the conference finals, while a loss would ensure the Kraken wouldn’t see either the Golden Knights or the Oilers until the Western finals.

Players to Watch

Jared McCann is having by far the best season of his career, notching 40 goals and 30 assists to lead the Kraken in scoring.

It’s rare for a player to shoot as well as he has over the course of a full season, but his shooting percentage of 19.2 sits in the top 20 of the league. Vince Dunn often serves as the quarterback from Seattle’s blue line, leading the Kraken with 50 assists.

Vegas will likely hold out leading scorer Jack Eichel (65 points) as well as captain Mark Stone (38 points) in order to ensure their health for the postseason.

With or without them, Jonathan Marchessault still leads the Golden Knights with 28 goals, and Chandler Stephenson both serves as Vegas’ main distributor (49 assists) and should win most faceoffs against Seattle’s 31st-ranked faceoff men.

The Pick

With Vegas likely without two top players, that would seem to suggest taking the Kraken here. But the Golden Knights have played half the season without Stone, and they’re deep enough to survive a night without Eichel.

On top of that, this is the rare game where winning does Seattle absolutely no good. The Kraken can improve their seed on paper, but doing so gets them a tougher matchup against an opponent they haven’t had much success against. There isn’t an ounce of benefit to Seattle going for a win in this game, as it would only make the job in the postseason more difficult.

I don’t see Seattle sabotaging itself here. I think the Kraken run out a reserve lineup, limit their best players’ ice time and get ready to face Colorado.

Dan's Pick

Golden Knights ML (-120)

Under 6

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