• Accuscore Impact Analysis - NHL Trade Deadline Splashes 2018/2019

    This season the NHL trade deadline on February 25th finally saw some big fish change their habitats, whereas previously it’s been just about as interesting as watching grass grow. Several teams pulled the trigger on anticipated headline deals, while some certain trade baits were left untouched. We are of course interested on how these decisions affect the outcomes of coming regular season games and more importantly, the playoffs.

    By running Accuscore’s simulations before and after the deadline trades – or actually a bit before as some decisive moves were already made previous week, we can determine the impact these changes have had on the teams, both in the short and the long run.

    Overall the changes definitely made a couple of teams stronger and of course then left a couple of stragglers weaker. Interestingly though, with less than 20 games left in the regular season, the impact on the predicted point totals changed only very slightly. This is probably due to the fact that teams growing stronger were already comparatively strong and most of the strong teams got better – and respectively the bad teams were already bad. Let’s see what effect the trades have had on some of the contenders and their likely playoff partners.

    Trade deadline winners

    Columbus Blue Jackets

    Not only did the Blue Jackets finally add a legitimate presence at the centre in Ottawa’s Matt Duchene and necessary depth in mid-6 wing in Ryan Dzingel, but they managed to hold on to talisman Artemi Panarin and no.1 goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky. Addition of hard-nosed defenseman Adam McQuaid and backup keeper Keith Kinkaid added some icing to the cake. With the moves, Columbus grew significantly stronger in offense and more reliable in the back. More notably, the trades allow moving the current players to their more suitable roles, namely a step or two down the hierarchy.

    Pre-DL: to make playoffs 83%, to win division 15%, point total 94

    Post-DL: to make playoffs 97%, to win division 20%, point total 98

     

    Vegas Golden Knights

    Arguably the best player and probably one of the most undervalued two-way forwards in the game, Mark Stone left Ottawa for the Golden Knights. One of the most constant performers in struggling Senators, Stone brings a truckload of offensive talent to Vegas – something the team has been lacking. Stone instantly became Golden Knights best scorer with almost 20-point margin with his 62 points in 59 games. Rarely has an impact of a single addition been as big as Stone’s is for Vegas. And they know it, since instantly after the trade the former Senator signed an 8-year $76M contract, making him the highest paid Golden Knight in history.

    Pre-DL: to make playoffs 71%, to win division 0.03%, point total 88

    Post-DL: to make playoffs 84%, to win division 0.10%, point total 91

     

    Nashville Predators

    Boasting an already strong team, Nashville Predators upgraded a couple of key positions albeit not growing stronger depth-wise. Kevin Fiala and Ryan Hartmann were sent away and in return the Predators acquired Mikael Granlund and Wayne Simmonds. While Granlund provides some much needed talent in the offensive end with his hockey IQ and passing ability, Simmonds brings in another tough net-front presence which will be much needed in the post-season. Although Simmonds has disappointed this season, change of scenery might spark a little life on the big forward. Bottom-6 veteran centerman Brian Boyle joined already earlier, providing some depth to the offence. Fiala and Hartmann were solid roster players, but it seems their replacements add some value to Pred’s Stanley Cup run.

    While the regular season’s predictions improved only marginally for the Predators after trade deadline, the impact on probabilities to win a playoff series increased with almost 5% against their Western Conference rivals – except for the Jets.

    Winnipeg Jets

    Also considered one of the frontrunners for Stanley Cup in the western conference, Jets did what they did last season: acquired a center for top-6. Last year it was Paul Stastny, now in Vegas and this year it is Ranger’s Kevin Hayes, a big body as is Jets’ configuration with some excellent prowess in both ends of the ice. He’s been a solid +40 point scorer in more or less chaotic Rangers team and is expected to jump in to help the likes of Patrik Laine and Nikolaj Ehlers to score the goals. Jets also bolstered their D with Panthers’ Bogdan Kiselevich, who adds depth to injury ridden defensive core missing Josh Morrissey and Dustin Byfuglien. Buffalo’s defender Nathan Beaulieu came in as a reclamation project after failing to make an impact in his two seasons and just might get a chance in the coming weeks. Matt Hendricks came in as a veteran presence to the dressing room and will probably spend a lot of time as a healthy scratch mentoring the youngster and filling in the 4th line if necessary.

    Like with Predators, Jets’ predictions for regular season improve only slightly due to the additions. And as is with the Predators, Jets’ chances of winning a playoff series improved closer to 4% - except against the Predators.

    No-impact exchanges

    Several teams consider contenders made some roster changes which have no impact according to the simulations. Some teams needed to shake it up without really improving that much and some teams preferred more suitable players for different role – be as it may, the following trades provided some headlines but didn’t affect or had a marginal effect on Accuscore’s regular season predictions and the playoffs-scenarios.

    Washington Capitals acquired defenseman Nick Jensen from Detroit Red Wings in exchange to Madison Bowey. While Jensen is a definite upgrade to Bowey as of now, the impact in solid Capitals defence is minimal at best. Carl Hagelin’s arrival from LA Kings should provide some depth in offense, but his numbers this season and last season are so poor his impact is marginal as well.

    Pittsburgh Penguins GM Jim Rutherford continued his shuffling of the deck at the deadline. Already having sent out Carl Hagelin to LA for Tanner Pearson, Pearson was now exchanged for hard-nosed bruiser of a defender Erik Gudbranson of Vancouver. Former 3rd overall pick never filled his potential and is unlikely to have a big impact on Penguins hunt for the Cup, especially since exactly similar calibre Jamie Oleksiak was let go earlier. Coming in already before the deadline were also Florida’s Nick Bjugstad and Jared McCann while Derick Brassard and Riley Sheahan went the other way. The moves balance out overall and the impact is literally non-existent.

    Dallas Stars would’ve probably been in the winner side, but Mats Zuccarello’s injury in his first appearance pushed the Stars down a bit – especially with most of the other western contenders growing stronger. Additions of Andrew Cogliano and Jamie Oleksiak already in January and Ben Lovejoy joining in exchange to Connor Carrick are only fringe moves, which are not showing up on simulations. Healthy Zuccarello has a small impact, but in the playoffs Stars did not get remarkably better.

    Toronto made their move already in January, acquiring Jake Muzzin to bolster the defence. Maple Leafs boast such an impressive team that Muzzin addition had no significant impact to their expected results. The same goes for San Jose Sharks, who added forward Gustav Nyquist from Detroit Red Wings. Already having a playoff percentage of 100% and point total prediction at 104, Nyquist makes no difference in Accuscore simulations.

    Colorado Avalanche added centerman Derick Brassard, now with his 3rd team of the season. His numbers are remarkably poor and there’s only a marginal impact on Colorado’s probabilities.

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  • Accuscore’s NHL 2018/2019 Season Preview and Predictions

    The winter is coming and so is the brand new NHL season. We’re looking at another 1271 regular season games, starting from tonight and lasting until early April 2019. There’s been some major movements in the league, but the strong teams are still strong and the weak are still weak – or are they?

    The summer was riddled with big name transactions, as John Tavares finally quit New York and headed back home to Toronto. Ottawa’s turmoil continued as arguably the best defender in the league, Erik Karlsson has left the Canadian capital for what can only be described as a ridiculous return from San Jose Sharks.

    Last season finally saw Alexander Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup – and it’s been a summer of celebration for the Caps fans and players alike, as we’ve witnessed through various channels over the internet. Will the Capitals recover from the hangover to challenge once again?

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    With the training camps over and rosters set for the opening night, Accuscore’s supercomputer has worked its magic once again and pre-determined the outcome of the NHL regular season 2018/2019 by simulating each and every game for 10 000 times.

    This is how the regular season standings are most likely to look after it’s all done and dusted on April 6th 2019:

    Accuscore NHL 2018/2019 Season Forecast

    Accuscore’s Regular Season Outright Total Picks

    In the Western Conference there’re not a lot of surprises. According to the simulations, both Winnipeg Jets and Calgary Flames manage to gather three more wins than the Vegas line would suggest. The line is rather high for the Jets at 106.5, but considering they already posted 114 points last season, it’s worth a shot. Flames on the other hand missed playoffs last season with a meager 84 points, but they’re a stronger group this time around and likely to make the playoffs. The line of 93.5 means that if they’re in the battle for the playoffs, it should be a piece of cake.

    The other end of the table sees Colorado Avalanche collapsing again far out of the playoff position. There are several question marks over the team, especially depth-wise but their young core might also surprise. Even if Accuscore’s numbers indicate they only reach 79 points, the line of 90.5 is a tad too low to go for the under – in case they are able to hang in for the playoff battle, there could be some moves to further enhance their chances.

    In the Eastern Conference the top looks very familiar and the bottom is quite as expected as well. Tampa Bay ended up with 113 points last season, and they’re not any less convincing this time around. Gathering more points than last season from their weakened Eastern Conference bottom feeders should not be a problem and the line of 107.5 points seems reachable. At the other end of the queue, there’s New Jersey Devils who are in a somewhat problematic rebuilding phase. Superstar Tayler Hall is likely to win a couple of games for his team, but otherwise the young core is unlikely to be able to push for playoffs and the line of 91.5 is a tad high. To add insult to injury, no.1 goalkeeper Cory Schneider is out for indefinite amount of time to start the season. Sorry Devils, this is not your season yet.

    Western Conference Picks

    Winnipeg Jets 106.5 points: OVER

    Calgary Flames 93.5 points: OVER

     

    Eastern Conference Picks

    Tampa Bay Lightning 107.5 points: OVER

    New Jersey Devils 91.5 points: UNDER


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  • Olympics Hockey Profitable, Top NHL & College Basketball Trends

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    Olympic Hockey Review + NHL & College Basketball Top Trends

    Germany was a minute away from the biggest surprise of Olympics ice hockey tournament history. Their unbelievable run for a gold was denied by Olympic athletes from Russia in the last minute of the game and an eventual 4-3 overtime defeat for Germany.

    Even though there were many surprises and Germany busted brackets by reaching the final of the tournament, Accuscore predictions provided our members with hefty profits during the games. Side value bets, especially, were right on a money since start of the tournament. Members who bet 100 dollars for every game's side value picks in Olympics ice hockey tournament cashed +1555 dollars in pure profit. This wasn't amateur hour for out members.

    This time, NHL players didn’t participate in the Olympics. They continued their regular season schedule last two weeks as planned. And so, AccuScore members benefited from accurate hockey predictions and NHL predictions simultaneously.

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    Since start of the season, accurate Accuscore predictions have provided 829 dollars profit, if total, side value and money line bets have been placed for every game. Like in Olympics, NHL side value bets have been especially profitable and returned profits of 2286 dollars since start of the season. Total bets haven’t been as profitable as side value predictions in NHL, but in Finnish ice hockey Liiga, total bets have been a real bank. So far, 6540 profit form the Liiga games speaks for itself...if you didn't know already, AccuScore takes hockey seriously.

    All of today's NHL picks: NHL picks
    All of today's Liiga Picks:LIIGA picks

    College Basketball Top Trends

    March madness is just around the corner. Like the name says, it is complete madness when trying to predict all games correct in the final tournament. Before the madness, we can highlight some best betting results from the games of individual teams:

    Charlotte has won only five games so far, but that's in line with our computer's thoughts. Actually, if you had placed a side value bet based on our predictions in every Charlotte game, you have over +1500 profit only from those games. So, while Charlotte won't be making the tourney, there's still time to cash in on their season.

    NCAA basketball Totals have been especially strong with UNLV and number 4 ranked Villanova. By betting totals in every game for these teams, 1340 and 1140 dollars profit, respectively, would be sitting in your wallet. Predictions for another highly ranked team, Michigan State, have been accurate as well. Side value bets for the Spartans have recorded over 900 profits since start of the season. Now we are preparing for the perfect bracket - stay tuned.

    All of today's College Basketball Picks:NCAA Mens Basketball Picks