Penguins brace for pivotal Game 4 matchup against Predators
Back the Pens in Game 4
Here are a few Stanley Cup Final betting options to consider, with odds courtesy of Bovada.
P.K. Subban guaranteed a victory in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final and the Nashville Predators delivered. Now the Preds, who still trail the best-of-seven championship series, can square things at two games apiece on Monday night when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins at Bridgestone Arena in Game 4.
The Predators are a difficult team to play on home ice, which is why Bovada is pegging the Western Conference champions as the -155 favourites. The club has only lost one game on home ice during these playoffs, but that won’t scare away the Penguins, who head to Smashville as +135 underdogs.
The Penguins may be leading the series, but Nashville has outplayed the defending champions through three games of the Cup final, outshooting their opponents 32.33 to 22.33 on average. The Predators, who will feed off their boisterous home crowd again on Monday night, have also had the advantage on the power play through three contests — scoring four goals on 10 chances. In comparison, the Pens have netted just one power-play goal in 10 opportunities on the man advantage.
The difference early on has been Penguins goaltender Matt Murray, who was remarkable in the first two games of the final and boasts a sensational 1.96 goals-against average in the post-season. Murray will be called upon to come up with key saves for the Penguins, who continue to chase a second straight Stanley Cup with a depleted defensive corps.
Pittsburgh’s two star forwards — captain Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin — were both held without a shot for the first time in the series. That is a huge accomplishment for the Predators considering the two sit one and two in NHL playoff scoring.
A pleasant surprise for the Penguins has been the play of Jake Guentzel, whose 13 post-season goals ranks first in the league. Of those 13 tallies, five have been game-winners, which means if the game is on the line in overtime, put your money on Guentzel to score.
Two of the first three matches in this series have gone over the projected total goals line. Bovada is setting the bar high once again with a projection of 5.5 for Game 4, however consider keep with the trend as the series has produced exciting offensive hockey.
The Preds may be flying high, but the Penguins will head back to Pittsburgh with a 3-1 series lead.
Pick: Pittsburgh Penguins (+135) and the over (5.5)