The first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs is already in full swing. On Friday, four different NHL playoff games go down — and we have the best bets to make on each one. You’re going to want to read this to get expert advice on gambling on the games!
There’s a lot to cover so let’s just jump right into our picks. All odds featured underneath come from the top-rated online sportsbooks.
Moneyline: Carolina Hurricanes at Boston Bruins
If there’s any team that badly needed to get a home game, it’s probably the Bruins. Plain and simple, Boston has been dominated so far. They’ve been outscored 10-3 in two games and badly need a win on its home ice to make this a series. Given those two bad outings, we’re actually taken back that the Bruins are moneyline favorites in Game 3.
Look, Boston is going to need a lot more to win besides being at home. They’re already in a bad position with Hampus Lindholm being ruled out in Game 3. He took a borderline illegal shot in Game 2, which leaves the Bruins down their key defenseman. That’s especially troubling given how easily Carolina has gotten in the back of the net through two games.
We’re betting that the Hurricanes win straight-up and nudge the series 3-0. This team is playing with a lot of confidence. Just look at its No. 3 goalie Pyotr Kochetkov. The third-stringer came into Game 2 and proceeded to make 30 saves AND got into a scrappy fight. Confidence indeed, which is why we’re taking the underdogs in this one.
Over/Under 6.5 Goals: Toronto Maple Leafs at Tampa Bay Lightning
|Over 6.5 goals scored
|Under 6.5 goals scored
Everyone knew this Toronto-Tampa series was going to be good. Both teams are legit Stanley Cup contenders at top NHL betting sites, but only one can advance. The Leafs stunned the Lightning with a 5-0 shutout in Game 1, but the defending champions rebounded with a 5-3 victory in Game 2 to even up the series. So who takes Game 3? Ya know, we’re not quite sure, hence why we’re betting the Toronto-Tampa over/under instead of moneyline.
We expect goals to come with relative ease. We mean, the Leafs are asking to be scored on so far this series. The team has played 22 minutes shorthanded after two games — which is the exact thing you do NOT want to do against the Lightning, who feast in those special situations. With the series going back to Tampa, these Toronto miscues could continue to pile up.
We need one more game in this series before we’re comfortable betting moneyline again. In the meantime, we’ll gladly bet the over 6.5 goals scored.
Moneyline: Minnesota Wild at St. Louis Bills
|St. Louis Blues
What a Game 3 we have here — so much that the most popular betting sites are largely in agreement: this St. Louis-Minnesota game is a moneyline toss-up. The home-ice Blues are ever slight favorites at -125, but as you can see, the Wild isn’t even plus-money either.
We’re picking Minnesota on the back of goalie Marc-Andre Fleury. He took unneeded slack after the Game 1 loss but rebounded in the Game 2 victory for Minnesota. But make no mistake about it: his late-season trade revitalized this Wild team. He was 9-2-0 with a 2.74 goals-against average, and .910 save percentage in 11 regular-season games after joining the team. Fleury's veteran presence will key Minnesota to a road victory, bank on it!
Against The Spread: Edmonton Oilers at Los Angeles Kings
|Edmonton spread (-1.5)
|LA spread (+1.5)
Typically, we’re not fans of betting on spreads when it comes to hockey — especially in the playoffs and in a series that’s tied one apiece going back to Los Angeles. But for our last bet of the night, we felt like upping the risk and taking Edmonton to cover the 1.5-goal spread.
Before you call us crazy, hear us out: the Kings have zero answers for the Oilers’ offense. They were just shut out 6-0 in Game 2 and also allowed three scores in Game 1’s 4-3 upset. Amazingly, seven different Edmonton players have already scored in the first two games of the playoffs. That speaks to the level of depth in this roster — and how many different ways they can beat you.
Game 1, to us, felt flukey. That’s not to diminish Los Angeles, but we just don’t think they have as high of a ceiling as Edmonton when they’re firing on all cylinders. The Oilers are 20-5-2 and have been one of the hottest second-teams in the whole NHL. We feel it deep in our gut that they’ll reclaim home-ice advantage with a dominant win on the road here in Game 3.
How To Bet On 2022 NHL Playoffs?
If you need a one-stop-shop for betting on the 2022 NHL playoffs, then you need to visit one of the bookies listed underneath. Any one of these sites will have you covered with ALL NHL bets you’ll need the rest of the postseason — whether it’s moneyline wagers, props, or futures. The table below lists our favorite bookies for NHL betting.