NHL Betting Guide: Tuesday 9/1/20

Elimination games bring out either the absolute best, or absolute worst in a team. Thankfully last night, it was the former. Although the Boston Bruins were sent packing, they fought hard in a double overtime loss while the Colorado Avalanche fought hard enough to see a Game 6. With two more teams facing elimination tonight, time will tell what fate awaits the Philadelphia Flyers and Vancouver Canucks.

Here are a couple plays from tonight's card!

Philadelphia Flyers vs New York Islanders

Flyers moneyline (+105): 4-Star Rating Out of 5

Down 3-1 in their Eastern Conference Semifinal matchup with the New York Islanders, it's do-or-die time for the Philadelphia Flyers.

The offensive well has run dry for the Flyers as they've managed just six goals through their the first four games of the series. There are indicators that output will start to creep up, though. Philly has increased scoring chances and high-danger chances in each of the last three games. The Flyers are averaging 10.8 high-danger chances and 31.3 scoring chances a game in this series but don't yet have the goals to show for their efforts. Expect output to start matching production.

Even if the offense falls flat on its face, Carter Hart showed last round that he can single-handedly steal a game or two.

New York has run amok so far this postseason, winning 10 of 13 games and putting up some impressive -- if not unsustainable -- numbers. The Isles have scored the most goals in the Eastern Conference while allowing the fewest among teams who made it to the second round. They currently have the highest shooting percentage and second-highest save percentage of all playoff teams, and, as a result, they currently rank first in PDO, sitting at 1.050. Both marks are well above season average, and I rely on PDO as an indicator that regression is looming.

The numberFire algorithm gives the Flyers a huge 65.3% chance of winning tonight. That is substantially higher than the +105 price currently available at FanDuel Sportsbook, making Flyers moneyline a four-star play.

Vegas Golden Knights vs Vancouver Canucks

Canucks +1.5 (-130): 4-Star Rating out of 5

To say that the Vegas Golden Knights have been dominant this postseason would be putting it mildly. Possession is normally a good indicator for a team's success. In theory, the more you hold the puck, the more chances you will create, while simultaneously limiting the ability of the opposition to create chances. That theory is evident with the Golden Knights.

Vegas is second in relative possession since the NHL relaunch. As expected, they are among the top teams in creating chances and the top team in limiting chances. Simply, Vegas is hard to beat.

But Vegas has lacked that killer instinct in crunch time. Last round they had the Chicago Blackhawks down 3-0 in the series before losing Game 4 and squeaking out a 4-3 win in Game 5. The same was true last season, when they blew a 3-1 series lead, including a three-goal lead in the last 10 minutes of the third period of Game 7, against the San Jose Sharks. Elimination games have not been kind to the Golden Knights.

Close games when a team is facing elimination has been a reliable trend so far this postseason. Teams facing elimination have won or covered the puck line in 11 of the last 16 such games played.

Here's a unique trend that probably doesn't mean much -- on games played Tuesday to Friday, the Canucks are 8-0. They are winless from Saturday to Monday, going 0-6.

The next three games of this series will be played before Friday, which will hopefully be a good omen for Vancouver. Our algorithm projects that the Golden Knights; advantage isn't as pronounced as the betting market implies. It's on that basis that taking the Canucks +1.5 is a four-star play.