Pittsburgh Penguins vs. New York Islanders Series Price Odds & Predictions

Monday, April 8, 2019 8:17 PM UTC

Monday, Apr. 8, 2019 8:17 PM UTC

After losing to Barry Trotz and the Capitals in the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs, the Penguins lose again to Trotz, this time with the Islanders.

For the second straight season, Barry Trotz will beat Sidney Crosby and the Penguins in the playoffs, except this season, he will do it as coach of the New York Islanders. As he did when he reconstructed the under-achieving Capitals' system and approach and led them to their first-ever Stanley Cup in his fourth season in Washington, Trotz has taken the worst defensive team in the NHL last season and made them the best. As a result, the veteran NHL coach has his new team overachieving and in the playoffs in his first season behind the Islanders' bench.

The last time the Isles faced Washington in the playoffs was in 2015 when they lost in six games to the Trotz-coached Capitals. As they did in that series, the Islanders will play their first-round home games in the former, now temporary home, the Nassau Coliseum. Like it was in 2015, when the fans thought they were seeing the last games played in the team's home since 1972, the old barn will be rocking and the crowd will be a major factor again. The Isles went 2-1 at the Coliseum in that series and forced a Game 7 by winning Game 6, which was then believed to be the last Islanders game there ever. Well, now that they've got at least two more games there and potentially four, you can bet the fans and team will want to make that the best home advantage in the playoffs with the intimate 13,917 capacity.

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Barry Trotz and the #Isles are really looking forward to the home-ice advantage that the Coliseum crowd brings. #Isles pic.twitter.com/XLhPU4FNP2

— x - New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) April 8, 2019
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The Pittsburgh Penguins are clearly the more talented team here with the likes of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang and more, but the Islanders have the Trotz factor and potentially the best home advantage going for them and that will be the difference as the Islanders (+115 to win the series take down the Pens in five games.

The Islanders won the regular season series with the Penguins going 2-1-0-1. They were outscored by Pittsburgh 13-12 in the four games.

The Islanders were 48-34 against the spread this season. They were 24-17 at home and on the road. New York scored 228 goals and allowed 196. The Isles were 26-51-5 on the over/under. They were 15-26-0 at home and 11-25-5 on the road. The Isles were 43-39 on the puck line. Mathew Barzal led the team in assists with 44 and points with 62. Anders Lee had the most goals with 28 lamplighters.

The Penguins were 44-28 against the spread. They were 21-20 on the road and 23-18 at home. Pittsburgh scored 273 goals and allowed 241. The Pens were 35-41-6 on the over/under. They were 19-21-1 on the road and 16-20-5 at home. The Pens were 39-43 on the puck line. Crosby led the team in assists with 65 helpers and points with 100. Jake Guentzel led the team in goals with 40 lamplighters.

Goaltending Matchup

For the Penguins, Matt Murray was 29-14-0-6 with a 2.69 GAA and .919 save percentage. Casey DeSmith was 15-11-0-5 with a 2.75 GAA and .916 save percentage.

For the Islanders, Robin Lehner was 25-13-0-5 with a 2.13 GAA and .930 save percentage. Thomas Greiss was 23-14-0-2 with a 2.28 GAA and .927 save percentage.

M*A*S*H Report

For the Penguins, Chad Ruhwedel (upper body), Zach Aston-Reese (lower-body) and Brian Dumoulin (lower-body) are day-to-day.

For the Islanders, Tanner Fritz (hand) is day-to-day, and Andrew Ladd (knee) is out for the season.

Series Prediction: Islanders in 5

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