NHL Playoff Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions Day 3: 4/13/19 - Against The Spread

Florence Fletcher
April 14, 2019

Congratulations to the eight teams for making it this far. Could a different team win the cup? "It's only going to get harder". A case could be made neither should be starting for their team.

As always, you can send your love/hate tweets to me on Twitter @fuzzychris91.

Tampa Bay is getting a key member of its defense corps back tonight.

They find themselves down 2-0 in their best-of-seven series against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Predators defensemen Roman Josi and P.K. Subban each scored goals, and Pekka Rinne stopped 26 shots. Tampa Bay is +105 o on the -1.5 puckline, while Columbus is at -125. The Norris Trophy victor took a helmet to the face during a collision with Washington's Carl Hagelin on March 30. Starting the 2019 calendar year as the worst team in the National Hockey League, the St. Louis Blues' hopes of a playoff berth seemed like a long shot until rookie netminder Jordan Binnington took over the reins in net. And know that all the subsequent series are going to be just as riveting. Led by John Tavares' 47 goals and followed by Auston Matthews' 37, this team has no problem shooting the puck. Frederik Andersen has not been good down the stretch, and the Leafs need him to be their best player every night.

Identifying the power play as a problem, GM David Poile brought in a big net-front presence in Brian Boyle (who was also sought after for his defensive acumen) and Wayne Simmonds (a player well-known for his resume of power-play prowess, though that's faded recently). Jake Muzzin and Jake Gardiner will both be ready for the playoffs, but even with those two back and healthy, the Bruins defence is still better. The NHL odds for Game 2 have them at -245 again, nearly assuredly they will not have the same kind of support. Add in Mitch Marner and an effective William Nylander, and you have yourself a lot of scoring power.

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After finishing the regular season atop of the western conference, the Calgary Flames were the first major upset of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, falling to the Colorado Avalanche in six games. We have not seen a force in the National Hockey League like the Lightning for some time and that force will end up winning the Cup. They got loud again in the minutes before the teams emerged from their dressing rooms for the start of the game.

Moving onto the defending champs in the Washington Capitals going up against the Carolina Hurricanes.

The race for the greatest trophy in sports, the Stanley Cup, is set to begin and EA Sports NHL 19 has run their annual playoff simulation to determine this year's champion.

The Blue Jackets fought back as they were able to stabilize and midway through the second period Nick Foligno collected an errant puck and scored on a breakaway to cut the Lightning lead to 3-1 after two periods. "Columbus had no quit in them and good on them".

"Now all of those guys have got their first game out of the way, they should get some confidence", coach Bill Peters said. He finished the season with a 2.39 GAA and a.917 SV%. Vegas may not have the same magic that it had past year, but its additions of Mark Stone before the trade deadline and Max Pacioretty and Paul Stastny over the offseason give the team a star-studded second line that still hasn't played up to its potential. Everything is going right, from great team chemistry, to incredible perseverance throughout the games, to determined leaders, showing the team how to get it done, and get it done right.

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