2012 Stanley Cup Finals Betting Update
The Los Angeles Kings are knocking on the doorstep of their first ever Stanley Cup Championship after taking a commanding 3-0 lead over the New Jersey Devils in this best-of-seven series. With Game 4 scheduled for Wednesday night at the Staples Center, the following is a closer look at this series as a whole along with some pertinent betting trends to help handicap Wednesday night’s contest.
New Jersey Devils Team Update
If New Jersey thought that losing the first two games of this series at home would act as a motivating force for Monday night’s Game 3 on the road it was sadly mistaken. The Devils blew a few golden opportunities to take the early lead and paid the price in the end in a 4-0 shutout as 136 road underdogs that effectively ended any hope of bringing the Stanley Cup home this season.
A rash of Los Angeles penalties at the end of the first period set-up a one minute 5-on-3 scenario, but New Jersey was unable to capitalize on the two-man advantage. The power play has been a thorn in this team’s side for most of the playoffs but it was especially evident on Monday night as the Devils went 0-for-5 on the night.
It is hard to pin too much of the blame for the 0-3 series deficit on Devils’ goalie Martin Brodeur, although frustration did seem to get the better of the 40-year old veteran in the final two periods of Game 3. Overall, he has stopped 78 of 86 shots he has faced in this series for a save percentage of just below 90. The main problem has been New Jersey’s inability to score goals. Its top three sharp shooters have been completely shutout and despite having the overall edge in shots-on-goal 82-78, the Devils have been outscored 8-2.
Los Angeles Kings Team Update
If the Kings go on to close this series out on Wednesday night, it would complete one of the most amazing runs in Stanley Cup Playoff history. They came into the postseason as the eighth-seed in the West and proceeded to knock-off the top three seeds in just 14 games. Los Angeles has been true road warriors throughout these playoffs with a perfect 10-0 record.
The Kings have parlayed their ability to win on the road with four straight Game 3 victories that have given them a commanding 3-0 edge in all four of their playoff series. Los Angeles did lose two Game 4’s at home, so there may be some hope for the Devils’ fans to see their team play in New Jersey one more time this season. However, with the Stanley Cup on the line and potential celebration in front of its home-town fans, do not count on it.
The NHL should get a jump on engraving Jonathan Quick’s name on this year’s Conn Symthe Trophy as the most valuable player in the playoffs given his performance between the pipes. He added an exclamation point to everything he has already accomplished by pitching a shutout on Monday night. Quick now has a goals-against-average of 0.59 and a .972 save percentage in the first three games of this series to go along with an overall 1.36 GAA and .950 save percentage in 17 postseason games.
Game 4 Betting Trends
The Devils are 19-9 in their last 28 games as underdogs on the road, but just 1-4 in their last five Stanley Cup Finals games. The total has stayed ‘under’ in three of their last four games.
The Kings are 20-6 in their last 26 games following a win and 9-1 in their last 10 playoff games as favorites. The total has stayed ‘under’ in six of their last seven games.
New Jersey has now lost six of the last eight meetings. The total has stayed ‘under’ in all three games of this series and in the last six meetings overall.
DJ is a freelance writer that concentrates on his true passion in life; the world of sports. He produces a number of articles each week for BangTheBook.com as well as a select group of other websites that specialize in providing the most up-to-date information for the sports gaming industry. His goal is to write insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player.