NHL playoffs betting (May 24): Senators face KO Game 6 on home ice

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Updated: May 23, 2017

The defending NHL champion Pittsburgh Penguins can return to the Stanley Cup Final with a win over the Senators in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa tonight; playoff record: 13-7-19, -1.74 units; overall record: 249-28-203, +55.44 units

Eastern Conference Finals, game 6: Pittsburgh Penguins @ Ottawa Senators (Pittsburgh lead 3-2)
Where: Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, ON, Canada
When: Wednesday, May 24, 10am (AET)
Prices: Pittsburgh $1.72, Ottawa $2.25

Confirmed bet: +5.5/total (one unit @ $2.11)

TIW says: Ottawa coach Guy Boucher loves playing the underdog card and has anointed the Pittsburgh Penguins as Eastern Conference champions-elect. “We know they’re a better team. Everybody knows that on the planet,” Boucher said after his team were pole-axed 7-0 in Game 5. He added that the Senators opened up early in the Game 5 loss, and that was what got them in trouble. He has since had what he feels were productive conversations with the team about returning to a 1-3-1 defensive structure for which he has become known.

The Senators will go back to no. 1 goalie Craig Anderson, who was pulled in Game 5 after giving up four goals on 14 shots. Boucher also said defenseman Erik Karlsson (playing with two hairline fractures in his left heel, pictured below) and center Derick Brassard, who were in the dressing room nursing injuries at the conclusion of Sunday’s game, would be good to go. The Senators are 0-for-29 on the power play since Game 2 of the second round against the New York Rangers, including 0-for-15 in the series. That 10-game drought ties an NHL-record that dates back to the Toronto Maple Leafs of 1942.

 

Sidney Crosby was on the ice the last time a defending champion returned to the Stanley Cup final, with his Pittsburgh Penguins upending Detroit in seven games for the third of the franchise’s four titles. Crosby looks to once again punch his team’s ticket to the NHL’s showcase event. After being held without a point in the first two games of the series, Crosby has five points (three goals, two assists) in the past three games and is a big reason the Penguins have spent a lot of time in Ottawa’s zone. Evgeni Malkin (NHL-best 17 assists, 23 points) notched three assists to push his career playoff total to 98.

That moved him past team owner Mario Lemieux (96) for second on the franchise’s all-time list. While much is expected of superstars Malkin, Crosby and Phil Kessel, Pittsburgh’s third line of Bryan Rust (goal, assist), Nick Bonino (two assists) and Carter Rowney (three assists) combined for seven points in Game 5. Matt Murray, who recorded his second career postseason shutout following a 25-save performance, has turned aside 68 of 71 shots since replacing Marc-Andre Fleury and owns a 17-6 record in 24 playoff appearances.

 

Yesterday’s result: 1-0-0, +0.91 units

Anaheim Ducks @ Nashville Predators WIN NT (one unit @ $1.91) WIN (3-6)

 

 

• Selections are listed in three categories – 1) Suggested (likely bet but yet to be finalised); 2) Confirmed (locked in at the price listed); and 3) Leans (tips, but not recommended bets); all times quoted are Australian Eastern Time (AET); prices with thanks to Pinnacle (except where markets are not available), correct at time of publication. Bets void if listed goaltenders are changed. Results/comments on today’s games/races will follow in the next post.

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