avatar Written by Graeme & Scott on Thursday, April 25th, 2019

And so ends another mundane first round in the NHL playoffs.

The Columbus Blue Jackets, New York Islanders, Colorado Avalanche and Carolina Hurricanes made it through to the next rount – just as everyone expected.

Seriously – what an insane opening round.

The sportsbooks now have the Boston Bruins as the favourites to take the Stanley Cup. Behind them are the Islanders and Sharks, followed by the Blue Jackets.

It’s going to be some interesting hockey.

One mistake people will make is immediately looking to bet the underdogs of each series, based on the first round series result. But don’t make that mistake.

Sometimes, freak things just happen. Other times, there are learning experiences from it. Most people had the Capitals to take the series and at their price it was still a good bet in retrospect. But looking back, it’s hard to ignore the workhorse capabilities of the Hurricanes, and that this one may have not been as big a shock as it seems.

Islanders/Pens is another where when you look at it in retrospect, Islanders got no respect. Penguins were plagued by issues throughout the season performance wise and it all came to a head in the playoffs.

As for the Flames and Lightning series? Man, sometimes shit just happens ha. That’s hockey.

As per usual we will analyze each series beginning with the two ones taking place today:

Blue Jackets vs Bruins Series Betting Tips:

Scott: The Jackets surprised everyone when the swept the Lightning who had one of the best regular seasons in NHL history. The Bruins are coming off of tough 7 game series against the Leafs.

The Jackets have had 8 days off, the Bruins only 1. You have to wonder if the extended time off will hurt the Jackets and the momentum they gained. The Bruins have had really no time off which although it sucks for them to not get any rest it allows them to get right back to business.

The Bruins will have home ice for this series and depending on how far they go, the rest of the playoffs. They are a strong team who can wear teams down

Bruins in 6

Graeme: My takeaway from the Bruins vs Leafs series? The Bruins didn’t win the series. The Leafs lost the series.

The Bruins best performance was in Game 2. I don’t think they came close to that the rest of the series. Rask made some insane stops in Game 7. And Leafs fans can point to about 10 different things their team or management did wrong. I’m not sure if Bruins fans can really point to much that actually won them the series. Even their top line – who DID perform – didn’t really feel as effective as they have been during the regular season. The depth stepping up was good for them though.

During the regular season, the Bruins were the better team but overall metric wise they were very close games. It’ll be interesting to see with a week off if Bobrovsky continues the magic or not. But I think I’ve got to go with the Jackets. They were a team that I can look at and say “they earned their spot” here and I just don’t feel that way with the Bruins.

I’d say Jackets in 6.

Americans: Best odds for the Bruins to win the series are -145 at Intertops..

Everyone Else: Best odds for the Bruins to win the series are 1.69 at Intertops..

Americans: Best odds for the Jackets to win the series are +145 at GT Bets..

Everyone Else: Best odds for the Jackets to win the series are 2.45 at GT Bets..

Stars vs Blues Series Betting Tips:

Scott: Binnington has been great for the Blues but Bishop has been as good as him if not better during the playoffs.

This should be a good series and could be a long one. The Blues have home ice for this round.

The Stars top line of Seguin, Benn and Radulov are incredible and will give Binnington problems. During the regular season Binnington had a .879 save percentage against the Stars and if they can continue to have success against him then I like their chances.

Stars in 6

Graeme: I take my hat off to the Dallas Stars – they completely surprised me first by making the playoffs and then by progressing to the next round.

I’m not a big fan of the Preds as many know so I’m not surprised they lost. However I am surprised in the manner in which it happened as the Stars just seemed to go from strength to strength.

Now they take on the St Louis Blues who won the road games and then overcame that to win a home game as well.

After everything we said in the opening I really don’t want to be backing underdogs all the time ya know? It’s hard not to get swayed by the opening rounds. Stars dominated them result wise in the regular season 3-1-0 although advanced metric wise, Blues were overall the better team.

I’m going to be straight up here – I am going with the Blues, and I fully believe I am doing it due to the reasoning of “I dont want to back every underdog”. I find myself sitting here trying to convince myself to back the Blues – coming up with reasoning.

So I’ll go with the Blues. But mathematically, I think the Stars is an +EV bet. Just have to go with my original assessment that the Stars aren’t a playoff team.

Blues in 6

Americans: Best odds for the Stars to win the series are +140 at Intertops..

Everyone Else: Best odds for the Stars to win the series are 2.40 at Intertops..

Americans: Best odds for the Blues to win the series are -155 at GT Bets..

Everyone Else: Best odds for the Blues to win the series are at 1.65 at GT Bets. Canada has 1.66 at Sports Interaction + free $20 bet..




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