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St. Louis Blues vs. Minnesota Wild 2017 Western Conference First Round Series Predictions, Picks and Preview

St. Louis Blues vs. Minnesota Wild 2017 Western Conference First Round Series Predictions, Picks and Preview

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St. Louis Blues vs. Minnesota Wild Series Preview

*Find the complete list of the 2017 NHL betting lines HERE!

Series Schedule

  • Game 1: April 12, 9:30 p.m., at Minnesota
  • Game 2: April 14, 8 p.m., at Minnesota
  • Game 3: April 16, 3 p.m., at St. Louis
  • Game 4: April 19, 9:30 p.m., at St. Louis
  • *Game 5: April 22, TBD, at Minnesota
  • *Game 6: April 24, TBD, at St. Louis
  • *Game 7: April 26, TBD, at Minnesota

*IF NECESSARY

Regular Season Head-to-Head

Among all the first-round playoff matchups this year, the Blues and the Wild probably had the closest head-to-head battle in the regular season. In three of the five meetings, the winner only won by a single goal.

St. Louis took the season series, 3-2, and did it by winning three straight after losing the first two, making this postseason showdown fascinating.

Topping all of that is that this is your classic offense versus defense clash, but let’s just elaborate on that below.

Why the Blues Will Win the Series (+130)

The Blues had a big turnaround after letting go of coach Ken Hitchcock, who was their second-longest tenured coach in team history. They replaced him with Mike Yeo, who, as you may remember, was also the former coach of the Wild.

Yeo vastly improved the down-and-out defense, and it was the main component as to why the Blues suddenly went 22-8-2 since he took over in February 1st. St. Louis only gave up 1.5 goals per game in their last 32 games, including nine where they allowed one goal or less.

Jake Allen was hot-and-cold before the coaching change, but remained hot after, going 10-2-2 with a .942 save percentage.

Considering the late-season resurgence and their great adjustment in the regular season series with the Wild, there’s no denying that their great odds for this matchup.

Why the Wild Will Win the Series (-150)

The Wild also have some momentum. There was an alarming struggle for the whole March, but they have since recovered and closed out the season winning five of their last six, where they scored four or more goals four times.

As one of the most potent offenses in the league, they finished the year ranking second overall in goals, with 266, which is more than what the powerhouse Washington Capitals had. They had four players score 20-plus goals and three of them also had 30 or more assists.

Adding to that is having the great defense. Among the top five scoring teams in the league, Minnesota is second only to the Capitals in goals against, penalty killing percentage, and save percentage.

Writer’s Prediction

The Blues (+130) come out on top after seven games.

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JE
Written by JE

Sports Betting Tips, News, and Analysis