On Wednesday, the Edmonton Oilers travel to St. Louis to battle the Blues while the Chicago Blackhawks take on the Anaheim Ducks on the road in a nationally broadcast double-header on NBC Sports Network.

Edmonton’s played close to .500 hockey, going 13-11-2 this season before their Monday night battle with the Dallas Stars. The Oilers are in the thick of the Pacific Division race because no team has yet separated from any other. Edmonton’s opponent on Wednesday hasn’t had nearly the success the Oilers have had.

A preseason second tier choice to win the Stanley Cup, the St. Louis Blues have been a huge disappointment. They’re the worst team in the deep Central Division, not only are they behind favored Nashville and Winnipeg, but they’re also behind Colorado, Dallas, Minnesota and Chicago. Any victory the Blues can muster could be the one that leads to the win streak they desperately need.

Another Central Division team, the Chicago Blackhawks, battle the Ducks in the second game on NBC Sports Network. The Blackhawks are only worse than St. Louis by about a game. Chicago would like nothing more than to beat one of the better squads in the Pacific Division on Dec. 5, but Anaheim won’t make it easy on the Blackhawks.

Check out analysis and picks for Oilers at Blues and Blackhawks at Ducks!

Wednesday, Dec. 5

Edmonton Oilers at St. Louis Blues

Edmonton takes on St. Louis for the first time since December 2017. The Oilers get a day of rest before tackling the Blues. The rest might do wonders for Edmonton, a team that doesn’t play that badly on the road, going 6-7-1. One thing in Edmonton’s favor is that center Connor McDavid should play. McDavid’s been out with an unspecified injury. He should be okay this week.

The Blues have more shutouts than any team in NHL, 22, but they’ve been cold, winning 3-of-10, and going 2-6 SU in their last 8. St. Louis allows 3.4 goals while only averaging 3. They also have a losing home record. I’m siding with Edmonton.

NHL Wednesday Free Picks: Edmonton Oilers -120 ML

Chicago Blackhawks at Anaheim Ducks

These two battled on Oct. 23 with Anaheim losing 1-3. The Ducks have been on a 6-1 winning roll in their last 7, though. Anaheim appears to have turned their early season woes around. The Ducks won 4 straight, two of the victories were over Eastern Conference heavies Tampa Bay and Washington, in a recent 4-game road trip.

Anaheim could produce a game that looks nothing like what we saw the last time the Ducks faced the Blackhawks. It helps their cause that they’re 7-3-3 this season at home while the Blackhawks are 4-9-2 on the road.

One other thing to note’s that Chicago has lost 7-of-10 and stumble into Anaheim on a 4-game losing streak. Taking a chance on Anaheim’s puckline is my preferred play.

NHL Wednesday Free Picks: Anaheim Ducks -1.5 (+159)