Game one scoring will be at a premium according to the NHL analyst Dana Lane. Join him as for a complete breakdown of Gami 1 between Predators and Penguins.
After a few days off it’s finally time to get the 2017 Stanley Cup Final underway from the PPG Arena in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
When I handicap game one I want to play the Penguins but the -170 price is too high, forcing me to only consider the ‘total’.
No matter how you attack this game it’s hard to overlook the Penguins experience in the series. They’re going for their second straight cup and third in nine years against a team that has never been the Stanley Cup. Mike Fisher is the only Predators player to ever play in a cup final and that was only five games.
I expect Nashville to aggressively forecheck the Penguins defensemen until they can prove that they can move the puck effectively without the services of Kris Letang. You may see more of the Penguins forwards coming back in the defensive zone to help the defensemen out. If that’s the case, that will certainly slow down the Penguins attack.
With the Ryan Johansen loss the Predators will be slowed up the middle causing offensive problems of their own, a problem that gets worse if Fisher is out or ineffective since taking a knee to the head in the Anaheim series. Kevin Fiala is also out for Nashville after breaking his femur in the second round.
More on the Penguins injury front it appears that Patric Hornqvist will return for game one while Justin Schultz is still dealing with an upper-body injury. Tom Kuhnhackl remains out as is Chad Ruhwedel.
The point is there are too many variables caused by injuries for game 1 to get on any NHL pick other than the ‘under’. I need to see how all the missing and damaged pieces will fit before I proceed with anything other than the ‘under’.
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