Hockey East picks: Jan. 27-31

Dave and I differed just twice last week in our picks. Winning them both doubled my lead to four games.

Jim last week: 9-2-1
Dave last week: 7-4-1
Jim to date: 116-70-24
Dave last week: 112-74-24

Friday, January 27

Merrimack at Boston University
Jim’s pick: The Warriors opened some eyes with Tuesday’s upset of the Terriers, but I just don’t see it happening at Agganis.
BU 3, MC 1 
Dave’s pick: After Tuesday’s loss, the Terriers say, “Nobody comes into this house without paying the price. Not here. Not ever!”
BU 5, MC 1

Massachusetts at Maine
Jim’s pick: If either team is going to battle for home ice in the first round, this weekend is paramount. I like Maine better on paper and certainly like them a lot more on home ice.
Maine 4, UMass 2
Dave’s pick: This series all comes down to the venue. Both teams come in at 2-9-1 in league play, tied for last place, but Maine is 7-5-0 at home and UMass is 1-6-0 on the road.
Maine 4, UMass 2

Vermont at Connecticut
Jim’s pick: Maybe this is a chance to pick up another game on Dave, who has continuously bet against the Catamounts this year?
UVM 3, UConn 2
Dave’s pick: In the words of that noted hockey aficionado Ralph Waldo Emerson, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” Which is a fancy way of saying I’m not going to keep picking against the Catamounts.
UVM 152, UConn 3

Northeastern at UMass Lowell
Jim’s pick: Last week was a good week for Northeastern and a difficult one for the River Hawks. If I’m picking trends, I’d go with the Huskies. But I think Lowell has the jam to rebound.
UML 4, NU 3
Dave’s pick: A week ago, it was Lowell that had the momentum of a charging locomotive and Northeastern was reeling. I’ll need more than one weekend to change my assessment of these two teams.
UML 3, NU 2

Providence at New Hampshire
Jim’s pick: Providence hasn’t been the best Friday team this year. And though they ride a winning streak, I’m going with UNH to open this series at home.
UNH 3, PC 2
Dave’s pick: I’m not a big believer in the “bad team on Friday” kind of statistic, but if I were consistent with my rationale in the Lowell-Northeastern pick just before this, I’d opt for the Huskies. One great weekend shouldn’t mean Providence is necessarily back to my preseason expectations. However, I’m going to invoke that “foolish consistency” line again and hop back on the Friars bandwagon.
PC 3, UNH 2 (OT)

Saturday, January 28

Notre Dame at Boston College
Jim’s pick: This might be the most difficult game of the weekend to pick. BC got back in the win column last weekend but I’m not 100% convinced this Eagles team can handle a top opponent. That said, I’m still picking the Eagles at home.
BC 3, ND 1
Dave’s pick: While the Eagles may have ceded the title of Best Team in Hockey East to BU (perhaps temporarily, perhaps not), they’re still the runnersup until proven otherwise.
BC 3, ND 2

UMass Lowell at Boston University
Jim’s pick: The way BU is playing, even after a loss at Merrimack, I find it difficult to pick against them.
BU 4, UML 3 (OT)
Dave’s pick: As I said a week or two ago, it’s going to take a lot to get me to pick against BU.
BU 3, UML 2

Massachusetts at Maine
Jim’s pick: A weekend sweep could go a long way for either team. So picking Maine indicates I believe they are on the upswing.
Maine 4, UMass 2
Dave’s pick: For me, it isn’t the upswing. It’s the venue.
Maine 3, UMass 2

Providence at New Hampshire
Jim’s pick: I’m 100% convinced this series is a split. I just hope I pick the right way.
PC 3, UNH 2
Dave’s pick: If I waited to see Jim’s picks before making my own, I’d see this series as a good chance to pick up two games. But I make my own picks first, and I’m gambling on a Friars sweep.
PC 3, UNH 2

Tuesday, January 31

Northeastern at Massachusetts
Jim’s pick: I know UMass won’t go 0-for the rest of the season. I just don’t know when I can pick them to win.
NU 5, UMass 3
Dave’s pick: With one win (over Alabama-Huntsville) and ten losses over their last eleven games, the Minutemen have made it tough to believe.
NU 4, UMass 1

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