Betting Predictions for the NHL Playoffs Second Round

Posted by Aaron . on April 29, 2016 in

If the first round of the Stanley cup playoffs this year is any indication, we are headed for a barnburner of a postseason so far. The Pittsburgh Penguins turned Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers from a dominant postseason goalie to a spectator by skating circles around his defense and sending pucks past him in quantity. The Minnesota Wild almost erased a four-goal deficit in Game 6 against the top seed in the West, the Dallas Stars. The New York Islanders used multiple overtime games to send the Atlantic champ Florida Panthers home. What are some things that you can bet on happening in the second round? Find out the latest NHL odds here.

Betting Predictions for the NHL Playoffs Second Round

 

 

Video game speed: Dallas vs St. Louis

The Dallas Stars are all about puck possession and led the NHL in shot volume (attempts both for and against) in 5-on-5 play. In six games against Minnesota in the first round, they shot toward the Wild net 310 times. Jamie Benn netted 10 points in those six games, and Jason Spezza netted 9 more, so the team might be able to score at its high pace against the Blues even without Tyler Seguin, who has at least two things wrong with one of his legs, but the NHL injury policy allows teams to be fairly secretive.

Meanwhile, the Blues have an offensive firestarter of their own in Vladimir Tarasenko, but his coach Ken Hitchcock does not trust him defensively. That could limit his ice time for this series. The Blues were able to contain the offense of the Chicago Blackhawks. However, the Stars have an even more powerful offense and should be able to find space against the Blues. The key for Dallas will be limiting those boneheaded turnovers and other mistakes that end up behind one of their goalies.

So, I’m predicting Dallas in seven in this series. It will be tough for them to shake the St. Louis D, but they will do it eventually. I’m also predicting that Dalla scores at least 25 goals over those seven games. They will find ways around the Blues’ defense, but they will also make enough mistakes that they will need all of those goals to win the series.

Penguins rising?

The Penguins made the New York Rangers look absolutely silly in the first round, quickly draining the Blueshirts’ will and winning in five games. There were those who thought that they might be able to do the same to the Capitals, but then they ran into T.J. Oshie, the unheralded winger who posted a hat trick, including the overtime winner, to deliver a 4-3 Game 1 win.

The good news for the Penguins is that they were able to get three pucks by Braden Holtby, arguably the best goaltender still around in these Stanley Cup playoffs. However, they were not able to swarm the Caps into submission like they were with the Rangers. So while I love the Penguins’ style of play and their energy, I think that what the Capitals bring will eventually be more than what the Pens can handle. I’m predicting Washington in six in this series.

Escape from New York

If you had had to guess which team from New York would have made it to the semifinals in the East, you probably would have picked the Rangers instead of the Islanders. However, it’s the Islanders who have ridden their wild card past the Panthers and into the second round. The Islanders tangle with the Lightning in the second round, and they posted yet another upset in the Sunshine State by winning Game 1, 5-3. Thomas Greiss has been unbelievable in goal for the Isles so far, and the checking line (Casey Cizikas, Matt Martin and Cal Clutterbuck) dealt out seven big hits and even grabbed the empty-netter to ice the game. The Lightning have a power play that is underwhelming (16% so far in the playoffs). Unless things change, a Lightning team with superior talent looks headed to the golf course. I’m predicting the New York Islanders in six.