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Nashville Predators vs. St. Louis Blues Predictions, Picks and Preview – 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs – Western Conference Second Round Game One

Nashville Predators vs. St. Louis Blues Predictions, Picks and Preview – 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs – Western Conference Second Round Game One


Nashville Predators vs. St. Louis Blues Game 1 Preview

Where: Scottrade Center, St. Louis, MO

When: Wednesday, April 26, 2017, 8:00 PM ET

Line: Nashville Predators (-105) at St. Louis Blues (-115); total: 5.0 – view all NHL lines

TV Broadcast: NBCSN

NHL News and Predictions

Betting on the Nashville Predators (+1.5)

Moneyline: -105

With one of the biggest upsets in recent Stanley Cup Playoffs memory, the Nashville Predators enter the second round as one of the most dangerous teams left in the field.

The Predators swept the top-seeded Chicago Blackhawks in four games with relative ease, outscoring the West’s best regular-season team by a whopping 13-3 margin. Nashville’s prolific forwards in Ryan Johansen, Viktor Arvidsson and Filip Forberg were too much for the Blackhawks to handle, as the trio combined for 15 points in the series.

Even better, goalie Pekka Rinne is having the best postseason performance of his career as well. Rinne allowed a mere three goals to the league’s fourth-highest scoring team during the regular season, as he now sports a surreal sub-1.00 goals-against average of 0.70 and a dazzling .976 save percentage.

It’ll be interesting to see how the Preds will adjust their game plan against the Blues ahead, especially considering that they only took three of ther head-to-head meetings in the regular season. Nevertheless, this Nashville squad definitely appears to be a serious contender from the Stanley Cup based from their sheer domination of Chicago.

Betting on the St. Louis Blues (-1.5)

Moneyline: -115

Similarly impressive as the Predators are the St. Louis Blues, who only needed five games to eliminate the Minnesota Wild from the postseason. The MVP for the Blues has got to be Jake Allen, who has redeemed himself so far from a lackluster showing in last year’s playoffs.

Although Allen’s 1.47 goals-against average and .956 save percentage are fantastic numbers that still pale in comparison to that of Rinne’s, it’s worth noting that the third-year netminder faced a flurry of shots to say the least from the NHL’s second-highest scoring team in Minnesota. Allen stopped 174 of the Wild’s 182 shots in the series, including 51 in St. Louis’ 2-1 overtime victory in the series opener.

On the other hand, we’re still waiting for the Blues offense to crank it up a notch. Left Wing Jaden Schwartz currently leads his team in points with five (two goals, three assists), but star foward Vladimir Tarasenko needs to be a better leader on the attack. Tarasenko, who has 20 goals through 38 postseason starts, scored his only goal of the series in Game 5’s series-clinching win.

Even though the Predators won one more game versus the Blues during the regular season, it was the boys from The Lou who had the last laugh in their final meeting on April 2. St. Louis cruised to a 4-1 victory, which pretty much locked the team in as the West’s third seed all the while sending Nashville down to the final wild card spot.

The Blues killed all six of the Wild’s power-play opportunities at home during their series, so their defense and specials teams shouldn’t be that big of a concern heading into Wednesday’s contest. It’s all a matter now of whether or not they can keep up with the Preds in the scoring department to kickstart the second round with a bang.

Writer’s Prediction

The Predators (-105) land the first blow in the series, 4-2.

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Written by Mark

Sports Betting Tips, News, and Analysis