Stanley Cup Playoffs: Odds, projections and best bets for Game 5 of the Western Conference Final

259
 

The Dallas Stars managed to stave off elimination with an overtime victory in Game 4, but can they force a Game 6? It’s going to be tight. Read on for odds, news, predictions, and best bets. And, don’t forget to check out the VSiN Hockey Betting Podcast Monday – Friday throughout the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

 

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Odds, projections and best bets for Game 5 of the Western Conference Final

Stars avoid elimination with 3-2 overtime win in Game 4

The goaltending was on point in Game 4. Jake Oettinger was great. He allowed two goals, but both Golden Knights’ goals were virtually impossible to stop so Oettinger made every stop he could have made. The same would have been said about Adin Hill, too, but the Stars did hit two posts in the game, and Joe Pavelski was able to beat the Vegas goaltender cleanly in overtime, albeit, after a chaotic sequence.  

Like the first two games, there was no margin for error in Game 4, and it’s the first time an overtime goal went the Stars way in the series. In fact, it was the first time in the playoffs that the Stars won in overtime, and they’re going to need a lot of luck to win three more games like that. Oettinger will have to be near perfect, or Hill will regress, because I don’t like their chances (13 percent) of winning three straight coin flips.

Shot attempts were mostly even, but the Stars finished the game with a 54 percent edge in expected goals, according to Evolving Hockey. It was the third game in a row that Dallas owned a bigger share of the expected goals which illustrates just how hard it is to win games against the Vegas Golden Knights. Even when you’re on your best, they can still beat you.

NHL Odds via VSiN

Dallas Stars (+120) at Vegas Golden Knights (-140)

Game 5 is set for Saturday in Las Vegas, and the Golden Knights are much bigger favorites than they were in the first two home games. Vegas closed at around -110 in Game 1 and Game 2, but with Stars’ captain Jamie Benn suspended, and forward Evgenii Dadonov injured, the Golden Knights are now priced as a -140 home favorite.

My hockey betting model projects that Vegas will win Game 5 approximately 54.5 percent of the time, which converts to -120 odds, and that means I’m a lot closer to betting on the Stars than I am the Golden Knights. The betting market will have to push the odds toward Vegas a lot for that to happen, though.

Shops, especially in Las Vegas, have moved toward the Golden Knights, with the Stars’ odds now listed as low as +135 on the moneyline. That price isn’t really available worldwide, though. In fact, only one sportsbook has +130 available in my jurisdiction here in Canada, so while value is beginning to show on the road team, I haven’t placed a bet yet and I probably won’t unless the odds shift even more across the market.

Best Bets

There’s not a whole lot drawing me into Game 5 from a betting perspective, but I do have a couple of small player prop bets.

Alex Pietrangelo Over 2.5 Shots on Goal +140 (0.5 units)

The Golden Knights’ defenseman cashed the over on his shot total for the first time in the series, registering five shots on goal in Game 4, but he’s attempted at least five shots in every game so far in the series and he attempted 10 shots in the last game. Pietrangelo leads the team in shot attempts and time on ice by a fairly wide margin.

Wyatt Johnston Anytime Goal +320 (0.5 units)

Johnston is now skating on a line with Tyler Seguin and Mason Marchment due to his usual linemates, Jamie Benn and Evgeni Dadonov, being out of the lineup and he wasn’t able to make an impact in Game 4. Johnston had registered 19 shots on goal in his last four games prior to Game 4, but he only managed one shot and his ice time dipped a bit. Johnston has been an impact player all postseason long, though, and he’s still in a good position to find the score sheet. He’s only scored four goals in the playoffs, but he’s one of the team leaders in shots and there’s some value on his anytime goal prop at +320 odds.

All bets tracked by Betstamp.

Updated Series Projections

Below are my series projections for the Western Conference final. Shop around and compare these odds to what is being offered different sportsbooks and you might find some value.

Series Winner

Vegas Golden Knights: 87% (-669)
Dallas Stars: 13% (+669)

Correct Series Score

Vegas Golden Knights win in 5: 54.5% (-120)
Vegas Golden Knights win in 6: 22.5% (+344)
Vegas Golden Knights win in 7: 10% (+900)
Dallas Stars win in 7: 13% (+669)

Series Spread

Vegas Golden Knights -2.5 Games: 54.5% (-120)
Vegas Golden Knights -1.5 Games: 77% (-335)
Dallas Stars +2.5 Games: 45.5% (+120)
Dallas Stars +1.5 Games: 23% (+335)

Series Total Games

5 Games: 54.5% (-120)
6 Games: 22.5% (+344)
7 Games: 23% (+335)

Check out the VSiN Hockey Betting Podcast Monday – Friday throughout the Stanley Cup Playoffs.