In an unusual twist in the Stanley Cup playoffs, four teams will have already played two games before the Nashville and Anaheim have even dropped the first puck on their playoff series.
We will share why in a minute why this had to occur, but if you are reading this article and others related to it from your humble hockey aficionado, we have gotten off to a good start at 5-2 picking all the games thus far.
For tonight, we will look into three more NHL picks and if you are interested, you can also read about Game 2 of Chicago at St. Louis here at sportsbookreview.com. Let’s attack the NHL odds looking at this trio.
The Ducks were snowed out in game with Washington earlier in the winter and had to play in D.C. on the last day of the season, where they wrapped up a fourth consecutive Pacific Division crown. The NHL cut Anaheim some slack, not having them fly coast to coast and play on Wednesday to start playoffs and gave them two extra days.
Anaheim will need it, in spite of finishing the season on 27-9 roll. Nashville’s 21-15 record pails in comparison to the Ducks, but it was plenty good enough to get them a seat at the Stanley Cup table and they are similar team to Anaheim.
Both teams are strong down the middle with exceptional center play and have solid goaltending. Nashville took two of three in the regular season, however, the home team has won four in a row. GTBets has the Ducks at -160 and while I am a little wishy-washy on this contest, Anaheim is 24-7 after a road win by two or more goals.
Free Pick – Anaheim wins
With my selection of Detroit on Wednesday, that was in part based on Tampa Bay’s Tyler Johnson being out. With all the secrecy surrounding hockey injuries which is allowed to perpetuate, I was quite surprised to see Johnson dressed and ready for Game 1. He has been a Detroit killer and he added two assists in the Lightning’s 3-2 victory.
Going into the series, I was certain the Red Wings would get one game in Tampa, but with Johnson back, a little less sure. I will stick with my Detroit choice out of principle and fully realize they cannot let the Lightning skate freely like they did too often or allow them to go on odd man rushes.