This article is part of our NHL Picks series.
NHL Picks Tonight: Stanley Cup Game 6 Player Props
NHL Player Props
Nathan MacKinnon OVER 5 Shots on Goal (PrizePicks)
I have taken this line in every game so far. Outside of the blowout game 2, MacKinnon has had 12 or more shot attempts in every game this series. The reason that is significant is because he has had nineteen games this season with 12 or more shots, he has had five or more in every single one, and six or more in seventeen of those nineteen games. I always find it risky to just follow recent trends and expect them to continue, but with a five-game sample size against the same team, and with something that definitive, I can feel confident in the logic as it follows. What makes it even more convincing is that while he averages more shot attempts at home, his shot-on-goal to shot attempts ratio is higher away from home. In the playoffs, He converts 65% of his shots to go on target away, while that number drops to 56% at home. He only averages 8.6 shot attempts at home compared to 10.6 away, but if he has been getting 12 shot attempts every game this series, including away games, then that split is not as concerning. Even if he misses that mark of twelve shot attempts, if his conversion rate remains anywhere close to that 65%, he can just eight shot attempts and still cover. Five is way too low of a line given this information. In my eyes, the worst-case scenario is a push and if that is the case, that means there is minimal risk and maximum reward. I love it. And, for those on sportsbooks, I would still take it at 5.5.
Ondrej Palat OVER 0.5 Points (PrizePicks)
Throughout the series, Palat's time on the ice has seen a steady increase; he has gone from fourteen minutes in games 1 and 2, to at least twenty in games 4 and 5. He has only covered this line in three of the five games this series, those games being games 1, 3 and 5. Game 2 was the blowout game where no trends or data proved to be predictive. Game 4, he had his lowest power play minutes on ice of the series despite seeing the most minutes on ice total so far this series. What is more interesting about game 4 is that it was his first home game of the playoffs without a point. Before then he had hit the over on all nine of his home playoff games. While this is a new series, I think that one miss should not move us away from the trend, especially one miss with the odd circumstances of lots of minutes, with minimal power play minutes. I can also confidently say that the matchup does not sway me away from it after this miss because in game 3, where he was also home, he still went over. Not only did he go over, he finished with two points on four less minutes, The biggest difference between games 3 and 4 is that in game 3 he had 5.2 power play minutes, in game 4 it was only 2.9, I think it is more likely the ladder goes up than the primary.