After a thrilling overtime clash in Game 1 that went the way of the visitors, the Pittsburgh Penguins might be facing a must win on the NHL betting odds on Friday night at home against the Philadelphia Flyers.
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The Flyers are playing on house money in this game, knowing that they have already gotten out of the Steel City with at least one victory. Head Coach Peter Laviolette knows that the Pens are going to storm back at some point though, and they are likely to win at least one game in the City of Brotherly Love in this series, so a second win here at Consol Energy Arena could be a must. Daniel Briere was the star of the show on Wednesday night. With his team in a 3-0 hole, he scored a pair of goals to get Philly back into it, and the rest of the team picked up the slack from there. Brayden Schenn had a huge game, recording two assists and a power play goal on the only man advantage of the game for the Flyers. Jakub Voracek, a man that scored just 18 goals on the season, finished the deal and gave the Flyers the advantage in the series. Do keep a close eye on Voracek. He is just 22 years old, but he now has four goals and five assists in his last seven games, making him one of the hotter offensive players right now for Philadelphia.
For the first 30 minutes or so, the Penguins were absolutely having their way in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals. They were up 3-0 thanks to goals by Sidney Crosby, Tyler Kennedy, and Pascal Dupuis, and they looked the part as the favorites to win the Stanley Cup. From that point forward though, matters weren’t all that pretty. Pittsburgh was outshot 20-15 over the course of the last two periods and overtime, and they really didn’t have a heck of a lot of good looks at Ilya Bryzgalov, a man that had to be under a heck of a lot of pressure making his playoff debut for a Stanley Cup contender. For as well as Crosby played in that first period, he didn’t get a shot on goal for the rest of the game, which just doesn’t cut it for a man of his offensive importance. Evgeni Malkin was silent as well, registering just three shots on goal in his 24 shifts, going -1 for his efforts.
Philadelphia Flyers @ Pittsburgh Penguins Pick: This is a veteran Pittsburgh team, and we wouldn’t be all that surprised if it were to come back and get the job done against a team that has a history of choking in the playoffs. That being said, this is just too ridiculous of a price to want to back the home side. At +180, the Flyers are clearly the right play even though we do think that they are going to ultimately go down in this game.
Free Hockey Pick: Philadelphia Flyers +180
Aaron 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.