avatar Written by Graeme & Scott on Thursday, May 20th, 2021

The Bruins and Capitals went to overtime AGAIN last night in what is such a tight series. Unfortunately it ended on a brutal error by Samsonov. He had made some great saves in that game and it’s sad that people will just talk about that glaring error.

The Oilers got their playoffs off to a bad start as the Jets beat them against the run of play.

Avs and Canes both flexed their muscles and got convincing victories. It was a fun last few minutes in that Avs/Blues game.

For today, we’ve got a busy 4 games on the go. Three Game 3s, and the much anticipated Leafs vs Canadiens series gets underway. We’ve said it before but if you don’t – take a minute and get an account at BetOnline.. In every single game pick today they have the best odds and that is comparing over 10 different sportsbooks.

Let’s get to it:

Leafs vs Canadiens Series Betting Tips:

Scott: These long time rivals havent met in the playoffs since 1979.  They played each other 10 times this season with the Leafs winning 7 times.

I know we have seen the Leafs fall apart in the playoffs before but the team they have this year looks unreal. 

Matthews is amazing, Marner too.  Throw in Tavares and Nylander and you have an incredible top 6.  They also have some good players who fill out much needed roles.  Guys like Foligno, Thornton, Spezza and Simmonds might not light up the score sheet like Matthews and Marner but they are valuable.

The Habs limped into the playoffs losing their last 5 games.  They had some costly injuries that hurt them this season.

I know the Leafs can fall apart at times in the postseason but this team seems different and I expect them to go deep in this year playoffs. 

Leafs win in 5 games

Leafs -2.5 Best Odds:

Canada: 2.45 Odds at Bet365 (Americans: We recommend http://www.bovada.lv.
USA: +135 Odds at Bovada.
Everyone Else: 2.45 Odds at Bet365 (Americans: We recommend http://www.bovada.lv.

(Odds correct as of 2021/05/20 8:39:21 AM EST but are subject to change.)

Graeme: First of all anyone counting out the Montreal Canadiens here – please remember last years playoffs. It was a similar situation with people insulted the Habs were even part of the COVID playoffs and they destroyed the Penguins 3-1.

How did the Leafs do back then? Oh yeah I remember – lost to the Jackets in the qualifying round. Shut out TWICE.

Yep. I remember!

Unfortunately looking at the advanced metric matchups for this one – it tells the tale. The Leafs are simply a better side. Even when Montreal outplay them – which was actually quite often – the Leafs were still able to get the job done.

The Canadiens were awesome to begin the season but really dwindled off unfortunately. If they’re able to recapture that early season form things could change but it’s hard to see past a Leafs victory here.

Basically looking at this one from all perspectives – the only way I can see the Habs winning the series is if the Leafs pull a classic Leafs.

I think Leafs win in 6 but Leafs -1.5 just isn’t playable at about 1.60 odds.

Instead I am going to say screw it, and place a bet on Montreal. There is the chance of Leafs being Classic Leafs, plus I have so many friends that are Leafs fans and man I would LOVE to throw that betting slip in their face. I’ll get it enlarged, printed out, framed and carry it around with me everywhere I go. Probably print hundreds of copies and hide them around their houses.

If you have any Leafs fan friends and want to join my – here’s the best odds on the Canadiens to win the series;

Canada: 3.85 Odds at Bovada.
Everyone Else: 3.80 Odds at BetOnline..

(Odds correct as of 2021/05/20 8:39:21 AM EST but are subject to change.)

Panthers vs Lightning Game 3 Betting Tips:

Scott: With the series featuring two teams from Florida, home ice isn’t as crucial but the Lightning won the first two games and the series moves down the road to Tampa Bay for the next 2 games.

The Panthers really have their work cut out for them now.  The Lightning look great and now get the last change since they’re at home.

Has been a good series to watch and the emotions are flying.  I picked the Panthers to win the series but I’m not so sure anymore.   Sure they could get back into this and make a series of it.   But they haven’t given me a reason to back them in this game.  And the odds for a Lightning win aren’t worth it

Graeme: I thought the Panthers were unfortunate in Game 2. Early goals can always be a killer. They had that bad first period then looked better for the most part – although just couldn’t get the high quality shots in. They are really hurting with Ekblad out.

I wouldn’t write the Panthers off yet but this is a do or die game for them. If they lose here, anything else is just delaying the inevitable. I think we’re also seeing the difference in playoff experience between the sides.

I hope the Panthers can get back on track here but I just don’t think they have it. Plus with Tampa being at home I’m fine backing Lightning to win incl OT. From a neutral perspective, I hope I’m wrong and Panthers get back on track.

Canada: 1.74 Odds at BetOnline..
USA: -135 Odds at BetOnline..
Everyone Else: 1.74 Odds at BetOnline..

(Odds correct as of 2021/05/20 8:39:21 AM EST but are subject to change.)

Penguins vs Islanders Game 3 Betting Tips:

Scott: These teams have traded wins and both games were decided by a single goal.  After losing game 1 the Penguins responded well thanks to a big game from Jarry.

I like the Penguins to win this series and I still do but the Isles are a team you can never count out.  The Penguins really need Malkin back and he may be ready for game 3.

Penguins win incl OT if Malkin plays

Canada: 2.02 Odds at BetOnline..
USA: +102 Odds at BetOnline..
Everyone Else: 2.02 Odds at BetOnline..

(Odds correct as of 2021/05/20 8:39:21 AM EST but are subject to change.)

Graeme: No play for me here. The odds are just too close. I lean Islanders actually – but not enough to warrant it. Might throw something on the game going to OT myself. Plus an over 5 in a playoff game? Boy that is tempting. Pens on the road concede a lot and it could be a more open game. Yeah screw it I’m going with that.

Over 5 Goals incl OT

Canada: 1.75 Odds at BetOnline..
USA: -133 Odds at BetOnline..
Everyone Else: 1.75 Odds at BetOnline..

(Odds correct as of 2021/05/20 8:39:21 AM EST but are subject to change.)

Knights vs Wild Game 3 Betting Tips:

Scott: After getting shutout in game 1 1-0, the Knights answered with a physical win in game 2 winning 3-1.  Reeves didn’t put up any points but he had 10 hits, Kolesar added 8.  When those dudes are throwing hits like that it’s going to wear a team down.

The Wild will now have 2 games in Minnesota to try and retake the lead but the Knights will have the motivation of beating Talbot and will be a tough matchup for them.

Knights win incl OT

Canada: 1.91 Odds at BetOnline..
USA: -109 Odds at BetOnline..
Everyone Else: 1.91 Odds at BetOnline..

(Odds correct as of 2021/05/20 8:39:21 AM EST but are subject to change.)

Graeme:The Knights stepped their game up last time out and got the win. Now they’re on the road where they boasted a 19-9-0 record. The Wild however were an excellent home team at 21-5-2.

I’ve said that based on the matchups, the Wild can cause the Knights problems.

Of course the Wild really need to figure out Fleury. That’s going to be a sticking point for them. They need to get the puck past him and that could be the decider.

I think the Wild could pull the win out tonight. Unfortunately I just need a better price. I feel this one is pretty much dead on. If Wild were 2.20 or something I’d be all freaking over them. But at around 1.95? Not for me.

No Bet

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BetNHL.ca » Tonights Tips » May 20th, 2021 NHL Betting Tips
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Western Rattlers

May post more later. Just thinking that in previous years, the Leafs had some kind of major consistency problem, maybe just too young, too rich too soon, too spoiled by the environment of HNIC, fans and corporate owners who treat you like gods no matter how mostly horrid you’ve been since 1967. But with the many trades and some growing up of their hot shots, I sense the Leafs may have gained some focus and maturity. I suspect they’ll win the series, that’s certainly not clear in the tea leaves at centre ice, and Montreal is capable of winning at least two games if they breath their oxygen. The Leafs are not a Tyrannasaurus Pest, they’re just really good. No lean or bet, I just hope we see great hockey.


Cheers guys.
Your analysis is always insightful. Sorry for not always commenting but I do regularly check in. I really only get to see highlights on YouTube as on the UK time zone.
Go Islanders!


Thanks man. Good to hear from you 🙂 And that can be a good way to take in the games honestly – I rely on them a lot during the regular season for the games I didn’t watch that night.


It felt so weird actually cheering that Panthers OT goal considering I bet against them.

That over 5 in Pens game was hilarious.