The Eastern Conference games got me off to a rough start yesterday with the Flyers pulling off the upset, while the Panthers held on for to tie their series with the Isles. Luckily though the West saved me thanks to big wins from the Stars and Sharks.
The NHL keeps on going hard with 4 more games tonight, including a couple of elimination games for the Red Wings and defending champion Blackhawks.
My playoff picks record now sits at 13-10 for +0.85 units.
Detroit Red Wings @ Tampa Bay Lightning
I’ve taken the Bolts every game in this series and I’m not going to stop now that they are back on home ice. The simple fact of the matter is the Red Wings have trouble scoring goals. Even when they are controlling parts of the game it seems to always take a strange bounce for the Red Wings to find the back of the net. The Lightning on the other hand have Kucherov, Johnson and now Drouin all on fire creating beautiful scoring chances at the other end.
I think the Lightning could get up early in this one and then it could possibly get out of hand as the Red Wings smell that the end is near.
Play: Lightning 1.63 @ SportsInteraction.com
Pittsburgh Penguins @ New York Rangers
The Pens pulled out a huge win on the road a couple nights ago and they really dominated that game only allowing the Rangers to get 17 shots on Matt Murray in his first appearance in goal. The Penguins have a very complete team this year and with all of their key players healthy I think they will be a very tough out in these playoffs. Look for the Penguins to not let their foot off the gas this time, like they did in Pittsburgh, and push the Rangers to the brink.
Play: Penguins 1.80 @ SportsInteraction.com
Anaheim Ducks @ Nashville Predators
The Ducks finally started to play smart Anaheim Ducks hockey in game 3 as they kept themselves out of the penalty box for the most part and kept the Predators scoring chances to a minimum. I think coach Boudreau will continue to hammer home the fact that this team needs to play smart and that the Preds are only really dangerous if they are on the man advantage. I expect the Ducks to get another win and keep the Preds to 0 or 1 goals.
Play: Ducks 1.91
Chicago Blackhawks @ St. Louis Blues
Let’s be honest. The Blues have been the better team in this series and they deserve to be up 3-1 on the defending champs. That said, this is the Chicago Blackhawks we are talking about and their backs are against the wall. That’s a very dangerous team and I do not expect them to just roll over and die.
The loss and Andrew Shaw will definitely hurt the Blackhawks who really used his tenacity in front of the net, especially on the powerplay. This seems to be a very complete and mature St. Louis Blues team and they will understand just how important this game 5 is, especially against the defending champs. I think St. Louis will play with the same urgency they have in the first four games and really take the game to the Blackhawks. This one will be tight, but I like the Blues to finish off the Blackhawks tonight.
Play: Blues 1.80 @ SportsInteraction.com
So if all goes to plan we will have two teams advance to the second round tonight. Last night I called the first team to advance in the Capitals and they let me down, so it will be interesting to see if we get any eliminations tonight.