NHL Props Monday: Capitals’ Ovechkin Takes Aim At Golden Knights

Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin looks on during a break in a game against the St. Louis Blues
Image Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

For the second week in a row, the NHL has a bunch of games on its Monday docket (seven in all). With dozens of COVID-postponed games to make up along the way, this likely will be the norm over the next several weeks — which is great news for NHL Props bettors!

Monday’s top-five NHL Props selections feature the greatest goal scorer of his generation and his fellow countryman (also a goal-scoring machine), plus a veteran goaltender who has struggled since making his season debut earlier this month.

Odds via FanDuel and DraftKings, and updated as noon ET on Jan. 24.

New York Rangers: C Mika Zibanejad

New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad reaches for the puck during a game against the Vegas Golden Knights
Image Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

The Prop: 0.5 Total Assists (vs. Los Angeles)
The Odds: Over +110/Under -140

While defenseman Adam Fox and winger Artemi Panarin have more assists than Zibanejad this season, the latter provides the best value play for this prop. Zibanejad has picked up at least one assist in exactly half of his games (21 of 42), and he’s been on a tear lately, notching six helpers in his last three games.

Five of those six assists came against the Maple Leafs and Coyotes at home, where Zibanejad has 13 of his 27 assists (including at least one in nine of 17 games).

Most of Zibanejad’s goal have come on the road (11 of 15 goals, including one in Los Angeles on Jan. 10). So taking him to be the set-up guy at the Garden on Monday is the way to roll, even against an L.A. squad allowing 2.71 goals per game on the road.

Editor’s Note: New to NHL props? Check out our complete NHL Props Betting Guide to get up to speed!

Washington Capitals: LW Alex Ovechkin

Washington Capitals left wing Alexander Ovechkin controls the puck during action against the New York Islanders
Image Credit: Tom Horak-USA TODAY Sports

The Prop: Score Anytime Goal (vs. Vegas)
The Odds: -125

Picking Ovechkin to score on any given night is virtually free money this season. The 36-year-old Russian leads the league with 29 goals (in 42 games), putting him just seven goals back of Jaromír Jágr for third place on the all-time list.

Ovechkin has found the net in 22 of 42 games this season, including four of the last five. On Monday, he’ll be firing against a Vegas squad that’s been decimated by injuries this season. Not only are the Golden Knights without stellar defensemen Zach Whitecloud (back, day-to-day) and Alec Martinez (facial injury), but Mark Stone (COVID) and Max Pacioretty (wrist) — two defensive-minded forwards — are on injured reserve.

Including the playoffs, Ovechkin has six goals in 10 career games against the Golden Knights. With Vegas banged up, expect future Hall of Famer to add another Monday.

Minnesota Wild: LW Kirill Kaprizov

Minnesota Wild left wing Kirill Kaprizov skates during a game against the Tampa Bay Lightning
Image Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Prop: Score Anytime Goal (vs. Montreal)
The Odds: +125

From one high-scoring Russian winger to another, Kaprizov has been on a tear this season. Entering Monday, “Dolla Bill Kirill” is eighth in the league in points (47) and has scored a goal in six of his last eight games. He’s deservedly been named to the All-Star Game, as he’s been playing like a true superstar.

Meanwhile, a season after making a stunning run to the Stanley Cup final, Montreal is in shambles. Veteran goalie Carey Price isn’t expected to play at all this season while recovering from surgery. (And with the Canadiens in last place in the league, why even bother rushing him back?)

Backup goaltender Jake Allen is also out for the next eight weeks with a lower-body injury, and third-stringer Sam Montembault won’t play Monday after suffering an upper-body injury last week. That means 22-year-old Cayden Primeau (1-3-1, 3.84 GAA, .898 save percentage this season) will be forced to take over between the pipes.

Good luck to Primeau in his quest to keep the red-hot Kaprizov from lighting the lamp for the fourth time in his last five home games.

Boston Bruins: G Tuukka Rask

Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask reacts after allowing a goal against the New York Islanders
Image Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Prop: 26.5 Total Saves (vs. Anaheim)
The Odds: Over -110/Under -120

Offseason surgery and an inability to secure a contract kept Rask off the ice until Jan. 13. Suffice it to say, things haven’t gone smoothly since his return. In three games, Rask has surrendered nine goals on 63 shots (.857 save percentage).

When you look a bit deeper, though, you see Rask yielded five of those goals (on just 12 shots) to the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday. But Carolina ranks ninth in the league in scoring. Rask allowed two goals apiece to the Winnipeg Jets and Philadelphia Flyers, who rank 23rd and 26th, respectively, in goals scored.

Now, Anaheim (13th) is closer to the Hurricanes than the Jets or Flyers in the goal-scoring standings. But the Ducks have dropped seven of their last 10 games, and they’ve been shut out twice in their last five.

Anaheim’s offensive struggles aren’t due to a lack of effort, though. The Ducks have tallied 42, 37, 34 and 35 shots in their last four outings. So the save opportunities figure to be there … or not. After all, Boston is allowing just 26.9 shots per game at home (third-fewest in the league).

Given that fact, and the possibility that Rask could get the hook if he struggles early, the Under seems the way to go with this prop.

Colorado Avalanche: LW Andre Burakovsky

Colorado Avalanche left wing Andre Burakovsky takes a shot against the San Jose Sharks
Image Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The Prop: 0.5 Total Assists (vs. Chicago)
The Odds: +156

With a roster full of stars, Colorado has plenty of firepower loaded up for Monday’s clash against the Blackhawks, who have given up the fifth-most goals (135) in the league this season.

Among his more notable teammates, Burakovsky flies a bit under the radar. But he’s still been productive, ranking fifth among Colorado forwards in assists (18 in 37 games) and seventh in time-on-ice per game (16:20).

What makes Burakovsky a smart value bet here is he’s gone Over on his assist prop in 11 of 22 games against Western Conference opponents and nine times in 19 home contests. Also, prior to being held off the scoresheet in his last two outings, Burakovsky logged an assist in seven of nine games (including four in a row).

The Avalanche score a league-best 4.15 goals per game, and that number climbs to 4.50 at home. Chicago is allowing 3.41 goals against per game on the road, and is 2-4-3 in its last nine on the road.