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NHL playoffs: Revisiting the four series that opened Monday night

May 3, 2022 08:27 PM

All eight first-round matchups are underway in the Stanley Cup playoffs, and updated series prices are available to bettors looking to bet on a team that lost Game 1. All odds come courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

Tampa Bay Lightning ( 175) vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (-210)

As I mentioned in the playoff preview, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Maple Leafs win the series, as my model suggested they had about a 45% chance of doing so. I still ended up with a bet on the Lightning to win the series at even money, though, because a 55 percent chance translated to a decent edge at that price. Unfortunately for me, the Lightning lost the series opener (I also bet on them to win that game) and if I’m basing my opinion on that game alone, the defending champs aren’t Stanley Cup material. The Maple Leafs dominated every facet of the game and won 5-0 in front of a raucous Toronto crowd. According to Evolving Hockey, the shots were basically even by the end of the game, but the home team’s expected goals percentage was 64. Of course, it’s early in the series, and counting out the Lightning would be foolish. However, if Game 2 plays out in a similar fashion, I’ll be a lot less optimistic. Regardless, I’m not going to double down with a series wager, as my model estimates that the Maple Leafs will win the series approximately 63.7% of the time. That converts to a fair line of -175, and, therefore, there’s no value betting on the Lightning to get back in the series.

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