Predicting How Many Games Will Be Played in the Stanley Cup Finals
by Scott Jack Scores & Statson
The Boston Bruins and St. Louis Blues will battle it out for the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup. The action will get underway on Monday night at TD Garden in Boston.
One of the most popular Stanley Cup props is how many games the series will last.
The Blues and Bruins can both make strong cases as to why they should win the Cup, but with this bet, you don’t even need to predict which team will win. You simply predict how many games will be played in the Stanley Cup Finals.
► Series Ends in Game 4 (+500 Odds) ► Series Ends in Game 5 (+185 Odds) ► Series Ends in Game 6 (+155 Odds) ► Series Ends in Game 7 (+155 Odds)
You can rule out the sweep immediately. These two teams play similar games. Both goalies are playing great and have been cool under pressure. Both teams are strong defensively and several games in this series could end up being decided by a lucky bounce.
Looking back at the history of the Stanley Cup Finals, we haven’t seen a team sweep since the Red Wings swept the Capitals in 1998. We also haven’t seen the Stanley Cup Finals last seven games since 2011 when the Bruins won the Cup in seven against Vancouver.
The most common number of games played in the Stanley Cup Finals in recent years has been six. Five of the last seven finals have gone six games. Based on how similar these two teams are, I expect the series to go back-and-forth initially.
I’m predicting that these teams will split the first four games with each team winning once at home and once on the road. The series will head back to Boston tied 2-2 and I predict the Blues will win the next two games and win the Cup at home in game 6.
Boston has the edge in goals scored (3.35 vs. 3.00 GPG) and goals allowed (1.94 GPG vs. 2.53 GPG) in the playoffs. However, 38.6% of those goals have been scored by the Bruins top line of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, and David Pastrnak. Many of those goals (17.5%) were scored on the power play, which is converting at 34% in the playoffs.
If St. Louis can stay out of the penalty box, they’ll win this series. Boston’s top line had a tough time scoring 5-on-5 (1 goal playing 5-on-5 in the Eastern Conference Finals). The Bruins have depth but rely too heavily on the top line to score goals.
The Blues are stronger defensively too. The Blues edged the Bruins in hits (558 vs. 510), blocked shots (274 vs. 247) and takeaways (177 vs. 122). As the series progresses, I expect the hard-hitting Blues to wear down the Bruins and close out the series in six games.
► Best Bet: Stanley Cup Finals will end in six games (+155) at America’s Bookie