Overtime games finally come to the NHL playoffs

May 5, 2009 5:05 PM
Power Plays by by Mark Mayer |
playoffs
NHL
last wk
7-4-1
68-53-2
3-0

See, we ask for a long overtime game and it comes.

It took triple OT for Anaheim to even things with Detroit. Vancouver-Chicago and Boston-Carolina are also 1-1 with Washington-Pittsburgh having played Game 2 on Monday. The Capitals held serve at home in the opener, 3-2.

Usually as the playoffs drag on, the checking and hitting becomes more intense and the goaltending gets even better. In 3 of the 5 games during the second round, the teams totaled 5 goals. That 5 is big since many of the projected totals from the books open 5 or 5½.

And that brings into play what the linesmakers call The Grand Salami. While I tend to go for it in a deli, betting over or under the projected total goals for the entire night is not really on my plate. But if you like, the Grand Salami is 11 for Tuesday’s two games. I might have jumped on the under except one of those games is Vancouver-Chicago, which has produced 17 goals in the first two matchups.

It’s safe to say there won’t be 4-0 sweeps in this round and probably every series will go at least 6. The TV coverage has been great and we still can’t believe that puck didn’t go over the line in the Carolina-Boston game after 15 looks at it. Every angle showed no definitive decision so the refs correctly ruled no goal. But Carolina had enough.

Now for some definitive decisions for this week:

Tuesday, May 5

Blackhawks -140 vs Canucks (5½): For all the praises of Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo, the Blackhawks have scored nine goals. I said last week that Chicago was a live underdog to win the series and see no reason to alter my thinking. CHICAGO.

Red Wings -145 at Ducks (5½): The Ducks believe in Jonas Hiller, who stopped San Jose and now has a win in the nets against the defending Cup champs. A very nice price for the home dog. ANAHEIM.

Wednesday, May 6

Capitals at Penguins (NL): If the zig-zag theory applies to the NHL, this would be the series to use it. Not knowing Monday’s outcome, we’ll side with the home team in Game 3. PITTSBURGH.

Bruins -115 at Panthers (5): When Cam Ward gets hot in goal, the Hurricanes can beat anyone. Look for another goalie duel between Ward and Tim Thomas. UNDER.

Question? Comment? E-mail me at: Mark Mayer