The Cheat Sheet: April 13th, 2011

Updated: April 13, 2011 at 2:36 am by Jeff Tay

Gather around hockey fans and devoted gamblers, the playoffs are here, and there’s money to be made. While most fans this time of year are looking at the games through “fan goggles”, and betting on their favorite teams, we’ll try to see things from a balanced perspective, and find value where there’s misconception. Today on the docket: 5 games, sorted into Gold picks, Silver Picks, Bronze Picks, and black lumps of coal.

Let’s see how today’s numbers break down, using the trusty database-recall system.

Wednesday’s Sheet:

– In the first 7 games of last year’s playoffs, 4 road teams managed to ‘steal’ a win, and all 7 of those games were decided by 1 goal. This isn’t the regular season where oftentimes teams take nights off, and unprepared teams get steamrolled. This is the time of year where every team battles for every inch of ice, and games becomes tighter than ever (triple-overtime, anyone?). So, with that in mind, you better be goddamn confident in a team if you plan on betting them at -150 or beyond. I say to hell with that though. Find your favorite underdog and bet them to steal at least one of their first two road games instead (or bet them +0.5 in reg.). If every series in the NHL starts off 2-0 for the favorite, then my hat goes off to the players and coaching staffs of those teams, but I don’t think it’s too likely that things will actually go that smoothly.

– For anyone who missed my playoff futures analysis reports, they are in the betting section.

Agree with the Gold pick? Disagree with it? See a betting line on the board that seems wrong? You know what to do (fill up the comment section).