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

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

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Nashville Predators vs. St. Louis Blues Game 5 Preview

Where: Scottrade Center, St. Louis, MO

When: Friday, May 5, 2017, 8:00 PM ET

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

TV Broadcast: NBCSN


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Betting on the Nashville Predators (+1.5)

Moneyline: -105

With the 2-1 victory on Tuesday, the Nashville Predators now find themselves one win away from an unprecedented conference final berth.

It was the eighth-consecutive home win in the postseason for the Predators, who now have a commanding 3-1 series lead over the St. Louis Blues. They’ll look to close out the series this Friday night in St. Louis behind more timely goals and another outstanding defensive performance.

James Neal scored in the second period to give Nashville a 2-0 lead in Game 4 that the team wouldn’t squander, while defenseman Ryan Ellis also found the back of the net with the man advantage. With that game-opening goal, Ellis tied a franchise record with his seven-game point streak in the playoffs, as well as gave his team its third power play goal in 10 opportunities this series.

Just about everyone from the Predators is scoring at will, even their blueliners. They have the most goals by defensemen this postseason with eight.

Above all else, goalie Pekka Rinne (32 saves on Tuesday) continues to put on the best showing of his postseason career. Rinne currently boasts a stellar 1.33 goals-against average along with a dazzling .953 save percentage – both playoff-bests this year – and the netminders behind him in those statistics aren’t even close.

With the way that Nashville swept the Blackhawks in the first round and with its sound performances against the Blues, it appears as though fans from the Music City will be serenading their Preds with songs of praise and joy before the weekend even starts.

Betting on the St. Louis Blues (-1.5)

Moneyline: -115

Despite outshooting the Predators for the third time in the series (33-25 in Game 4), the St. Louis Blues find themselves in an even deeper hole to climb out of.

A trio of St. Louis players are doing their best to stay competitive in the series. Joel Edmundson, who now has the second-best plus-minus rating in the playoffs at plus-10, scored the only goal for his team on Tuesday to prevent the shutout. Meanwhile, Alexander Steen assisted on that goal to extend his point streak to three games.

Lastly, Jake Allen isn’t getting enough credit for his work in front of the net. Although Allen picked up the loss and made only 23 saves in Game 4, he’s actually right behind Rinne with a sweet .936 save percentage this postseason.

What’s killing the Blues is that their aggression tends to be over-the-top for the most part. They’ve committed a total of 51 minutes in penalties compared to just 28 by the Predators.

In addition, a couple of the team’s standouts have cooled off at the worse time. Vladimir Tarasenko, who scored twice in the Blues’ victory in Game 2, has been held point-less in back-to-back contests. The same could be said about Jaden Schwartz, whose three goals and four assists all came from just the first seven playoff games and has been kept in check for Games 3 and 4 of this series.

If Tarasenko and Schwartz become non-factors yet again in Game 5 this Friday, we might as well kiss St. Louis’ bid for a second-straight conference final appearance goodbye.

Writer’s Prediction

The Predators (-105) win in overtime, 3-2, to advance to the Western Conference Finals for the first time in franchise history.

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Mark
Written by Mark

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