We have already covered the Eastern Conference Final in the Stanley Cup playoffs, and we decided that it will be the Penguins who will move on in that series. Assuming that we are correct, the big question that now needs to be answered is who they will face in the final. Just as we have in the east, there is a surprise participant in the Western Conference Final, as very few hockey fans outside of the state of Tennessee had the Nashville Predators going this far. They are full value for their place in the western final, though, and they will have a tough series ahead of them, as they will be going up against an Anaheim Ducks team making their second appearance here in the last 3 years. One of these two teams are going to come up a little short, but which of them will it be? Find the latest NHL betting odds here.
Here’s A Closer Look At The 2017 NHL Western Predictions For The Conference Finals
Why bet on the Nashville Predators to reach the Stanley Cup Final?
This is the stage of the postseason where tiredness and injuries can start to take their toll. This is not likely to be a problem for the Predators, as they are healthy, and have reached the Western Conference Final in just 10 games, which is the best of any of the 4 teams left in the playoffs. While it has been a team effort for the Predators to get here, a large portion of the credit for their success needs to go to goalie Pekka Rinne. He has been nothing short of outstanding this postseason, outing together a rather unbelievable .951 save percentage through the opening two rounds. If the Predators do have a weakness, it’s that they are not that strong offensively, which may mean that they are forced to lean on Rinne a little more in order to move on.
Why bet on the Anaheim Ducks to reach the Stanley Cup Final?
As we mentioned earlier, the Western Conference Final is familiar territory for the Ducks, but this is also the spot where their playoff run comes to an end. If they are going to make it past the Predators, they are going to need to continue the solid blueline play that has carried this far. They are also likely going to need another Herculean effort from Ryan Getzlaf, who is coming off a spectacular series versus the Edmonton Oilers, where he amassed 10 points in the 7-game series. While the defensive core of the Ducks has been solid, there are some concerns about their goaltending. John Gibson has not exactly been stellar in net, and his .903 save percentage is not what you would expect from a goalie at this stage of the proceedings.
Who will win the Western Conference Final?
Over the years, the team that wins the Stanley Cup very often does so because they have great goaltending to draw on. I’m not suggesting that Pekka Rinne is going to turn the Predators into a championship team, but he will do enough to get them to the Stanley Cup Final. Nashville in 7.