Up 2-0 in the Eastern Conference finals, and seemingly getting stronger with every series, the Bruins have emerged as even-money favorites to win the 2019 Stanley Cup, followed by San Jose (+170), St Louis (+500) and Carolina (+1400).
When it comes to betting on the NHL playoffs, this guide to brush up before the the finals covers not just the money line but also “the puck line”. The biggest question marks with Boston were about depth and goaltending.
Tuukka Rask has been arguably the best goalie in the postseason (.937 save percentage) while secondary scoring from Charlie Coyle and David Krejci (12 points each) has taken pressure off Boston’s top line of Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak, and Patrice Bergeron.
One of the reasons why San Jose is the second favorites at this point to win it all is because of how well their depth is playing. Logan Couture leads the Sharks with 11 goals scored this postseason. Brent Burns has recorded 15 points and Tomas Hertl has recorded 14 points (nine goals and recorded five assists).
Erik Karlsson leads the team this postseason with 13 assists. Martin Jones has not exactly been great in net, but he has made the big saves when he has needed to.
One of the reasons why the St. Louis Blues is the third favorites at this point to win it all is because they have been inconsistent on defense, but they have been a resilient team during the postseason and I wouldn’t count them out by any means.
When Jordan Binnington has a bad game, he is very good at bouncing back at the next game. His record this postseason is 8-6 with a .908 save percentage and a 2.58 GAA.
Vladimir Tarasenko has been a major disappointment for St. Louis this postseason. Even though he has scored five goals in 14 postseason games, Tarasenko has only recorded one assist and his plus/minus is -8.
For some reason, it feels like he needs to do more and he just hasn’t. Jaden Schwartz has led the way for the Blues with eight goals and four assists. Alex Pietrangelo leads the team in assists this postseason with nine.
The Carolina Hurricanes are the least favorites to win it all at this point because they have struggled so far against the Boston Bruins. Carolina is also struggling with goaltending. Petr Mrazek has not looked the same ever since returning from a lower-body injury.
I don’t see Curtis McElhinney saving this series for them. The Hurricanes only have one true superstar in Sebastian Aho. He and Jacoob Slavin each have recorded 11 points this postseason. Teuvo Teravainen leads Carolina in goals scored this postseason with seven.