Wednesday Wagers: Will Oilers' McDavid set new personal record?

Watch as Connor McDavid zig zags from near the blue line through the Coyotes' defence to snipe in his 200th career goal past Karel Vejmelka.

Suffice it to say there won’t be a shortage of talking points on Scotiabank Wednesday Night Hockey this week.

The featured game sees the Toronto Maple Leafs and a horde of hockey media descend upon the United Center for a game against a Chicago Blackhawks team marred in off-ice controversy and on-ice disappointment.

How will Chicago respond just one day after the findings of an ongoing sexual misconduct investigation were released, resulting in significant upheaval within the franchise?

The national audience can also enjoy Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers hosting the Philadelphia Flyers on Sportsnet 360. There are five games in total with Boston vs. Florida, Vegas vs. Dallas and Detroit vs. Washington available to watch on SN NOW Premium.

With all that in mind, here are a handful of player prop bets to keep an eye on during Wednesday’s slate of games.

Can Matthews build off first goal?

Austin Matthew scored Toronto’s lone goal in a 4-1 loss to Carolina earlier this week. It was his 200th career tally and he scored it on a nice wraparound move against his friend and former teammate Frederik Andersen.

The Maple Leafs could use some more of that from their top star forward with Wednesday presenting a solid opportunity against an opponent in turmoil.

Matthews has the shortest odds of any player on either team to score a goal Wednesday at +100 – Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat have the next-best odds at +150 followed by William Nylander at +175.

Matthews had six separate multi-game goal streaks last season en route to leading the league with 41 goals in 52 games played.

The reigning “Rocket” Richard Trophy winner has five goals in eight career games against Chicago – three of those were scored during the 2018-19 season.

Can McDavid extend his multi-point streak?

The Edmonton Oilers are off to a 5-0-0 start for second time in the past three seasons and fittingly Connor McDavid is on a five-game point streak to open a season for the second time in three years.

McDavid is brimming with confidence and why wouldn’t he be? He’s off to a blistering start with six goals, seven assists for a league-leading 13 points.

The 24-year-old superstar already has three scoring titles and is the odds-on favourite to receive his fourth in 2022, however McDavid has never started a season with points in six consecutive games. McDavid recorded four goals and eight assists in his first five games of 2019-20 before he went pointless in his sixth game.

McDavid’s odds to record at least one point against Philly is listed as heavy -400 chalk (separate odds have McDavid anytime assist at -250 and McDavid anytime goal at +100) and if you’re wagering that McDavid will extend his multi-point streak it’s also favoured to hit at -135 odds.

If you’re thinking two points isn’t enough for McDavid on Wednesday then there’s +160 value on a three-point outing (McDavid had 18 games last season with at least three points), +438 for a four-point night and huge +1067 odds if McDavid notches five points in a game for the first time since Feb. 20. Another multi-point effort would bring McDavid to within one game of tying Wayne Gretzky's franchise record set in 1983-84 when The Great One began that season with seven consecutive multi-point games.

McDavid recorded at least one point in the final eight regular-season games of 2020-21, so when you add that to his 2021-22 start, he has 11 goals and 23 assists for 34 points during his current 13-game regular-season point streak.

BARGAIN HUNTING

You’re not likely to get great value when betting on streaking star players, which is why it can often benefit a bettor to chase value and seek out players on slumps or those flying under the radar.

Here are a few players in action Wednesday with interesting matchups and juicy odds.

Anthony Mantha anytime goal +250: It’s the first time Mantha is playing the Red Wings, the team that drafted him 20th overall in 2013, since the Capitals acquired him in a trade that sent Jakub Vrana, Richard Panik and two high draft picks back the other way.

Jamie Benn anytime point +100, anytime goal +300: It has been goose eggs across the board for the Stars captain since his one-assist season debut. Benn hasn’t had too much regular-season success against Vegas (just two goals, zero assists in seven games) but he did score three times in five playoff games in 2020 during the Dallas-Vegas conference final series.

Joe Thornton anytime assist +300: Even at age 42, It’s not crazy to think Jumbo Joe remains more than capable of producing at least one assist every five games – even in a reduced role at age 42. Thornton has one goal and zero assists in four games this season. An anytime assist against the team that drafted him first overall more than 20 years ago at three-to-one odds could be worth a shot.

All listed betting odds via Bodog as of Wednesday morning

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