NHL Western Conference Finals Betting Preview

Posted by Daniel Strum on May 13, 2016 in

It seems that every NHL season delivers up a surprise team that goes deeper than expected, and it’s fair to say that the Western Conference Final features a pair of teams that many are surprised to see there. If you had put some money on the San Jose Sharks and St. Louis Blues being the two teams in the conference final, you could be sitting on a rather nice little chunk of change right now. Both of these teams have had to battle hard to get where they are, with 3 of their 4 combined series going the full 7 games. This would suggest that both teams may be running a little on empty, but when you reach this stage of the season, and are this close to being in the Stanley Cup Final, you tend to find energy reserves that you did not know were there. The biggest question now is which of these two teams will go on to represent the West in the Stanley Cup Final, so let’s see if we can perhaps give a clearer answer to that question with our in depth NHL odds analysis.

NHL Western Conference Finals Betting Preview

Why bet on the San Jose Sharks

The Sharks have made a dramatic turnaround after back to back disappointments in the last two seasons. Two years ago, they were knocked out by the LA Kings in the opening round after building up a 3-0 series lead. Last year proved to be even more miserable, as problems on and off the ice led to them missing the playoffs altogether. The Sharks booked their ticket to the postseason with a third place finish in the Pacific Division, and that meant a re-match with the LA Kings in the opening round. San Jose made no mistake this time around, putting away the Kings in 5 games. They had what looked like an easier go of things against the Nashville Predators in the second round, but were forced to go the full 7 games in order to move on. The Sharks have been very disciplined throughout the postseason, and are the least penalized team in the playoffs. If they can maintain that against a physical Blues side, they could well move on.

Why bet on the St. Louis Blues

The Blues have gone a long way toward shaking off the choker label in this postseason, but they have not had an easy time of it. St. Louis has had the toughest road of any of the 4 teams left in the playoffs. They had to start out by facing the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks, who they bounced in 7 games, and then they had to go up against the high-scoring Dallas Stars, who they also dumped in 7 games. The Blues have been strong and physical throughout the postseason, but have also been a real offensive threat along the way. They have made a habit of wearing teams down with their physical play, but that may be a tough ask against a Sharks team that easily manhandled the very physical Kings. The Blues have a bit more to offer on offense than the Sharks, and that may prove to be the difference.

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My NHL Western Conference Finals Prediction

This is another series that looks destined to go all the way, as these two teams are pretty evenly matched. The Blues have thrived in long series, and I think they will do so again.

St. Louis Blues in 7