Computer Picks: 16/04/2010–Round One, Day 3

Updated: April 16, 2010 at 3:29 am by Jeff Tay

From a neutral perspective, these NHL playoffs could not have gotten off to a more exciting start, with all seven games so far being decided by one goal margins, and both number-1 seeds being stunned by their respective 8th-seeded opponents. “Revenge”, however, will be the buzz-word thrown around over the next day or two, and as unlikely as it was to see so many of the road teams win so far, it would probably be even more unlikely to see many of them win again in hostile territory.  There is still no denying though that the prices that many of these favourites are being offered at are still very steep and generally unprofitable, and there are also signs, as well, that these playoff series are playing out very similarly to how their corresponding regular season series played out before them (very evenly matched, with some road wins). 

As unpopular as it may seem then, the best thing to do right now might just be to proceed with extreme caution, as many of the favourites will indeed be the more desperate teams going into day 3, while the underdogs, of course, will be being offered at some very generous betting prices. Meanwhile, you might also be able to count on the scoring to steadily decline as the playoffs progress, and 5.5 might soon start to look like an unattainable number. These playoffs so far have certainly not been for the feint-of-heart bettors, as the massive underdogs and the under 5.0’s have been cashing the majority of the tickets.

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Nashville Predators vs. Chicago Blackhawks

There was a lot of buzz over the run that the Detroit Red Wings made to finish up their regular season, but absolutely zero buzz about the Nashville Predators, who actually finished their regular season on an 11-4 run.  The Nashville Predators have been a vastly underrated and undervalued team for the majority of this season, and here they are again being priced as a team with a less than 1 in 3 chance of winning game #1 (priced at more than +200 on the moneyline). Nashville will be faced with conceivably one of the most difficult challenges available in the Chicago Blackhawks, and will probably be outshot quite regularly throughout the series, but goaltender Pekka Rinne will be a great equalizer, and as we have seen so far in both these playoffs and in playoffs past, goaltending can make an immense difference. Behind great goaltending and also a great deal of size up front and on the back end, Nashville should be able to offer a challenge to the highly-touted Blackhawks.

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