The Vancouver Canucks jumped out to a 1-0 series lead in the Western Conference Semifinals against the Nashville Predators on Thursday night, and they’ll look to put a hammerlock on the series in Game 2′s NHL betting action at Rogers Arena.
The Predators really reverted back to the team that we are used to seeing in Game 1, and the truth of the matter is that this is the style that they are going to have to play to have any chance of advancing to the Western Conference Finals for the first time in team history. Nashville slowed the game down to a crawl and relied on rock solid defense and goaltending to stay in the game. The plan would’ve worked had the offense done just a tad bit more. The ‘O’ only mustered 20 shots for the game and wasn’t able light the lamp even once, though there were definitely some opportunities that presented themselves. The problem that the Preds have realized though, is that they aren’t winning games when Martin Erat doesn’t get a single shot on goal and Mike Fisher only has one whack at net. However, the good news is that Pekka Rinne is back in fine form again, as he only was beaten one time on 30 shots against one of the most ferocious offenses in the league.
Vancouver has to be relieved that it didn’t have an ill effects to the short turnaround time for Game 1 of this series after that epic Game 7 that went to overtime against the Chicago Blackhawks two nights before. The Canucks have played particularly well on their home ice in the second season, taking down four of the five games with just that one dud in Game 5 against the defending champs. Roberto Luongo picked a great time to come up with arguably his best performance of the postseason as well. He stopped all 20 shots that he faced for a shutout, something that he has become familiar with over the years for the pride of Western Canada. It’s the second straight amazing game for the man they call Loo, and if he can stay confident in himself and shake off the idea of being benched for Game 6 in the Windy City, the Canucks will be tough to beat. We know that we have yet to see the best out of the Sedin brothers in the postseason as well. Sure, they combined for 12 points in the first series against the Blackhawks, but they can really explode for one of the best offenses that the league has to offer as well.
Nashville Predators vs. Vancouver Canucks Pick: It’s really hard to believe that the Predators are beating the NHL odds in this one, but they have to have at least a one in three chance of getting the job done, especially if Rinne keeps this play up. Go with the Predators +190 for a potential upset to level this series at a game apiece going back to the Music City.
Andrew Ryan has been in the sportswriting biz since the late-90s, and he has worked side by side with some of the best and brightest in sports gambling. Always searching for the best trends in sports, Andrew uses his brilliant math mind to his advantage to beat the books.
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