Okay NHL fans and betting enthusiasts, with the start of both conference finals at hand, now is a perfect time to preview both series while offering up some expert hockey insight that could help you cash in consistently on both series from start to finish. The Stanley Cup playoffs are almost coming to an end! Now is the time to get in on the action!
2019 Stanley Cup Conference Finals Betting Preview
While hockey begins as something you watch, what it becomes is something you feel.
— NHL (@NHL) May 9, 2019
Carolina Hurricanes (54-31-6-2) vs. Boston Bruins (57-28-7-3)
- 2019 Stanley Cup Conference Finals Odds: TBA
The Hurricanes have won six straight playoff games by sweeping the Islanders after taking the final two games of their first round series against the defending champion Capitals. Carolina has won won 21 of their final 30 regular season games to earn the top wild card in the East, so the Canes have been hot for quite some time now.
“The journey that we’ve been on — and, obviously, the road isn’t over — we’re still creating it ourselves,” said Carolina captain Justin Williams, who won a Stanley Cup with the Hurricanes in 2006. “But it’s been quite a change around here certainly in the past few months. Everybody’s believing in each other and you see what happens.”
Petr Mrazek was injured in Game 2 against the Islanders and replaced by backup Curtis McElhinney, who posted three wins with a 1.56 goals-against average and .947 save percentage. Mrazek said the injury was a non-issue after practicing fully on Monday and Tuesday, and coach Rod Brind’Amour said his main concern is to “make sure both guys are 100 percent. That obviously trumps everything.”
Defenseman Jaccob Slavin has 11 assists to lead Carolina in scoring while Teuvo Teravainen, Jordan Staal, Sebastian Aho and Warren Foegele have nine points each in the playoffs. The Canes ranked 16th in scoring (3.0 gpg) during the regular season and eighth in goals allowed (2.7 gpg). Carolina went 25-18-4 on the road this season.
Boston finished tied for the second-highest point total entering the postseason but had to come from behind in both of their two playoff series to beat Toronto in seven and Columbus in six.
“We’re halfway to our goal. I think you need to relish the plateaus along the way and we’re certainly at one of those,” Bruins forward David Backes said. “Toronto was a different beast than Columbus was, but they each bring their own challenges and we were able to answer both challenges.”
Boston’s top line of David Pastrnak, Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron, has combined to put 16 goals and 32 points on the board in the postseason. The bruins also have an all-world goalie in veteran Tuukka Rask, who recorded a .948 save percentage and 1.71 GAA versus Columbus and put the Blue Jackets away with a 39-save shutout in Game 6.
“I think that he was our best player the whole series,” Boston captain Zdeno Chara said. “He was the stone at the back end that we rely on every night, and he deserves a lot of credit for the performance he put in those six games.”
Boston averaged 3.1 goals per game in the regular season (11th) while limiting the opposition to just 2.6 goals per game defensively (3rd). The Bruins went a blistering 33-11-3-1 at home this season.
Boston won two of three regular season meetings with Carolina by winning 3-2 on the road on Oct. 30 before falling 5-3 on the road on Dec. 23. Boston won on their home ice 4-3 in overtime on March 5. Game 1 of this series gets underway on Thursday night.
Game Series Schedule
- Game 1 (@ BOS): Thursday, May 9, 8 PM ET
- Game 2 (@ BOS): Sunday, May 12, 3 PM ET
- Game 3 (@ CAR): Tuesday, May 14, 8 PM ET
- Game 4 (@ CAR): Thursday, May 16, 8 PM ET
- Game 5 (@ BOS): Saturday, May 18, 7:15 PM ET
- Game 6 (@ CAR): Monday, May 20, 8 PM ET
- Game 7 (@ BOS): Wednesday, May 22, 8 PM ET
St. Louis (53-32-7-3) vs. San Jose (54-32-7-3)
- 2019 Stanley Cup Conference Finals Odds: Blues +100 / Sharks -120
On Saturday, may 11, the Blues and Sharks will open their Western Conference Finals series. San Jose took two of three against St. Louis during the regular season. St. Louis recorded a 4-0 shutout win at home on Nov. 9 before the Sharks won 4-0 at home on Nov. 17 and then, 3-2 in overtime on their home ice on March 9.
St. Louis Blues
The Blues have won six of their last nine games while holding the opposition to two goals or less in five of those victories. The Blues held the Dallas Stars to one goal in each of the final two games of their second round series to reach the Western Conference Finals. St. Louis averaged 3.0 goals per game during the regular season (15th) while limiting the opposition to 2.7 goals per game (5th).
San Jose Sharks
The Sharks have won six of their last 10 games to dispatch defending conference champion Vegas and then, Dallas in the second round. San Jose has scored three goals or more in five of their last six wins while holding the opposition to two goals or less in five contests during the span. San Jose averaged a fantastic 3.5 goals per game during the regular season to rank second in scoring while allowing 3.1 goals per game defensively (21st). The Sharks also went a stupendous 31-13-3-2 at home this season while St. Louis went a more modest 26-14-5-2 on the road.
Game Series Schedule
- Game 1 (@ SJ): Saturday, May 11, 8 PM ET
- Game 2 (@ SJ): Monday, May 13, 9 PM ET
- Game 3 (@ STL): Wednesday, May 15, 8 PM ET
- Game 4 (@ STL): Friday, May 17, 8 PM ET
- Game 5 (@ SJ): Sunday, May 19, 3 PM ET
- Game 6 (@ STL): Tuesday, May 21, 8 PM ET
- Game 7 (@ SJ): Thursday, May 23, 9 PM ET