Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning
Stanley Cup Finals Game 2 Pick: Under 5 goals (June 6th 2015)
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This is a 1* Free Play on the UNDER between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Tampa Bay Lightning.
If you played Tampa Bay like I did in Game 1, you likely have a pretty foul taste in your mouth after the way the game ended. Other than a brief two minute lapse in concentration, the Lightning controlled the pace of the contest throughout, but regardless, the final outcome ensured an easy win for our TOP RATED play on the UNDER.
I think the UNDER is the savvy move in Game 2 also.
If you didn’t have a chance to read my FREE PLAY analysis for Game 1, I believe it’s worth a second look here as for the most part, it also directly pertains to my selection in Game 2:
Chicago is back in the Finals for the third time in the last six seasons with its 5-3 win over the Ducks on Saturday, while the Lightning held on for a 2-0 victory at MSG to advance. Tampa Bay earned home-ice advantage because it had six more points than Chicago during the regular season. Note that these two teams split a pair of regular season games, the Hawks won 3-2 in a shootout on November 11th, before the Bolts struck back with a 4-0 victory on February 27th. Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop was particularly effective against Chicago in those games, stopping 65 of 67 shots, while captain Steven Stamkos was also extremely productive with two goals and three overall points. Tampa Bay may not have the storied history that Chicago does, but it’s still the first team ever to play four Original Six teams in one Stanley Cup Playoff. If you’re watching the NHL at this time of year, then you’re more than just a casual fan, so breaking down individual player match-ups isn’t really important, these teams are in fact very evenly matched, a sentiment clearly shared by the oddsmakers. Both are loaded with plenty of offensive talent and veteran leadership and each is backed by superb goaltending. But is rest going to lead to rust? I think with a few days off, the answer is a definite “yes” on that one and this initial “flat footedness” is something that we can take definitely take advantage of. Also note that Chicago has seen the total go UNDER the number in four of six this year when playing with three or more days rest, while Tampa Bay has seen the total dip below the posted number in five of seven in the same position. There seems to be many strong situational and trend based factors pointing to the UNDER to warrant it a second look in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals.
The two best players on the ice in Game 1 were the men standing between the pipes and with each team waiting for the other to make the first mistake, I think that the writing is indeed on the wall and that another classic hard-hitting, grind-it-out playoff battle is in the cards. Consider a second look at the UNDER in Game 2.