by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
The Calgary Flames will be looking to continue their steady rise up the North Division standings when they close out their season series with the Montreal Canadiens on Monday as -125 home favorites on the NHL odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com (how the moneyline works).
Calgary has claimed victory in each of the first two dates of its current three-game series with the Canadiens, and now sits just four points back of Montreal in the division standings going into Monday evening’s matchup at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
Canadiens vs Flames | OddsShark Matchup Report
Overall, the Flames have posted wins in five of their past seven contests. That marks a dramatic turnaround for the club after falling to defeat in eight of their previous nine outings. Calgary has also risen to the occasion in four dates with the Canadiens during the team’s current hot stretch. The Flames took home the win in three of those clashes, and now sport a 6-2-0 record against Montreal this season, including four straight wins on home ice.
The Flames have built their late-season resurgence on steady defensive play and spectacular goaltending, as the team has surrendered just 1.86 goals per game over its past seven contests. Calgary has also consistently shut down the Canadiens attack during their season series, allowing just nine total goals while winning six of the past seven matchups.
Unfazed by his recent increased workload, goaltender Jacob Markstrom has stepped up. The 31-year-old has compiled an impressive .925 save percentage while appearing in each of the past seven games. He has also been in net for each of the team’s six victories over Montreal this season, capped by a sterling 30-save performance in Saturday’s 5-2 victory.
The Flames offense has also stepped up in recent dates with Montreal, scoring nine goals over the first two games of this series, and four or more goals in three of their past four tilts.
That is all bad news for the injury-hobbled Canadiens, who now find themselves under enormous pressure to halt their current slide as they hit the ice on Monday as +105 underdogs at online betting sites.
Losers in nine of their past 13 outings, Montreal has seen what was previously considered an iron grasp on the final playoff spot in the North Division steadily slip away. The Montreal offense has mustered more than two goals just twice in its past 11 outings. That situation is not helped by a rash of injuries that has sidelined Brendan Gallagher, and left the status of Tomas Tatar, Jonathan Drouin, and Paul Byron for Monday’s game in doubt.
As well, the road has been particularly harsh for the Canadiens, who have averaged just 2.50 goals per game while losing 12 of their past 16 away contests.