Game five is set back in Minnesota and the Wild will play host to the St. Louis Blues after tying the series back up at two games apiece. This is easily one of the more evenly matched series in the playoffs so far, where it has now come down to a best-of-three scenario for these teams. The Blues started hot with a win in game one before giving up two straight wins to the Wild. Game four saw the Blues claw back and tie up the series before sending it to Minnesota for game five. It’s time to continue our NHL odds series with a Blues-Wild prediction and pick.
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Here are the Blues-Wild NHL Odds, Courtesy of FanDuel
NHL Odds: Blues-Wild Odds
St. Louis Blues: +1.5 (-215) (+122 ML)
Minnesota Wild: -1.5 (+176) (-146 ML)
Over: 6.5 (-108)
Under: 6.5 (-112)
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Why The Blues Can Cover The Spread / Win
The St. Louis Blues have had some flashes of excellence here and there but it’s tough to win games when the defense just isn’t shining through. The losses of Torey Krug, Nick Leddy, Robert Bortuzzo, and Marco Scandella does not help their case either, with the most important piece of that bunch being Krug. However, the Blues’ offensive strengths are clearly not the issue, and will likely need to score even more goals to stay in this race. The Blues also switched up their goaltending for game four, giving Jordan Binnington the start over Ville Husso. Binnington will likely start game five tonight as he came away with a victory in the game prior. He’ll be the last line of defense against a scary Wild offense.
Why The Wild Can Cover The Spread / Win
The Minnesota Wild lost their momentum in game four after winning back-to-back games prior. However, they’re back in their home barn where they have been deadly all year long. Overall, the Wild are pretty healthy and will lean on Kirill Kaprizov to get the job done yet again as he has five goals and six points so far through the first four games. The defense for the Wild hasn’t been great, remaining ultimately pretty quiet, but also flying under the radar. They don’t perform “highlight plays” but they’ve been playing good, smart, technical hockey; making plays that won’t show up on the stat sheet. Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury will likely get yet another start in game five tonight as he has managed a .914 save percentage so far. He’ll look to put the team on his back once again and snag a win at home tonight.
Final Blues-Wild Prediction & Pick
This is one of these series where it is so evenly matched that anything can happen. Both teams are buzzing right now, knowing that they can win, and it’ll be a fantastic rest of the series as it is now a best-of-three situation. If there’s any difference in these teams, it would be their offense. The Blues like to play with patience and wait for those scoring opportunities to open up for them while the Wild are a fast and precise team, creating those scoring opportunities for themselves. Again, I genuinely think this game (and series) can go either way. Because of that, I’m going to keep it safe and take over 6.5 total goals tonight. Both of these teams can put pucks in the back of the net, and both goalies have been allowing it recently. With that, give me the over, even though I think the Blues can somehow pull this series off in seven games.
Final Blues-Wild Prediction and Pick: Over 6.5 (-108)