Well, players who bet on NHL playoffs and picked the Penguins in Game 2 came out winning this Wednesday evening. Despite playing great hockey for most of the match, a slip-up for just a few minutes opened the door in the slightest manner for the Nashville Predators’ opponent. And since that opponent just happens to be the Pittsburgh penguins, a few minutes was entirely too much.
It’s actually been a bit spectacular to see the Penguins capitalize on such few opportunities, and their efficiency in such a tight window has been the hallmark of this team. But does the glory truly belong to the black and gold? Or should NHL sports betting fans start pointing the finger at Pekka Rinne?
Rinne Needs a Win
Coming into the series against Pittsburgh, Rinne had posted an impressive .947 save percentage throughout the postseason that left the best online sportsbooks hailing the goalkeeper as the principal reason for Nashville’s success. There’s no denying Rinne played a big part in Nashville success leading up to the Finals, but there’s no denying Rinne has also played a big part in their 0-2 start.
So far against Pittsburgh, Rinne has posted a .777 save percentage. The difference is more than notable, it’s staggering. In Game 1, Rinne allowed 4 goals on 11 shots. In Game 2, Rinne followed that lackluster performance with one even more disappointing, allowing 4 goals on 25 shots.
Now the series heads to Nashville and unfortunately for the Predators, they are now feeling the pressure of elimination. Rinne ended getting pulled in the first two games of the series, and all eyes will be on the goalkeeper in Game 3 to see which version of Rinne we’ll get. Will it be the Rinne we saw earlier in the playoffs? Or will it be the Rinne that Pittsburgh has gotten to know.
Game 3 – Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Nashville Predators – Saturday, June 3rd
When: 8:00 pm ET
Where: Bridgestone Arena, Nashville
Series: Penguins Lead 2-0
Stream: NBC Sports
Odds for Players Who Bet on NHL Playoffs:
Pittsburgh Penguins +1 ½ (-260) 5 ½ (+115) +115
Nashville Predators -1 ½ (+220) 5 ½ (-135) -135
Surprisingly enough, despite the results of the first two games, the NHL sports betting odds have decided to peg the Penguins as the underdog. Granted, Pittsburgh has had their struggles outclassing the Predators at times, and it’s clear that with a little better play at the goalkeeper position Pittsburgh will have their hands full against Nashville.
The Predators have to find a way to keep Rinne’s confidence up in an effort to return him to his former gory. Despite the fact that Nashville lost Game 2 4-1, the Predators played extremely competitive for most of the game. That all went sideways at the start of the third, but the point is that Nashville is more than capable of competing with the Preds, and the NHL sports betting lines reflect that.