NHL Betting: Minnesota Wild To Peg Back The Blackhawks In Game 3

Montreal Canadiens 2.90 Boston Bruins 2.25

All tied up via an authoritative third period retort by the Bruins in Game 2 it's all set up for a superb atmosphere at historic Bell Centre.

Although Montreal will be ruing the lead they lost in the final ten minutes on Sunday it's mission accomplished in terms of flipping the home ice advantage, they have to accept that Boston are good enough to intervene it's just about picking their own moments to get in front.

Much like before the series began it's the Bruins offering the soundbites to the media trying to unsettle Carey Price in particular, he's grown with the responsibility of playing goalie in Montreal and I don't doubt his self-belief that might have come into question in the past. This time last year David Krejci was in unstoppable form propelling Boston towards the Finals, the Czech is finding 2014 a bit tougher and along with Brad Marchand who's usually another clutch performer they're each looking for their first goal of the playoffs.

On the whole there's been plenty of goals scored by both teams so far and the over 5.5 total goals lines remains high at 2.35 to fit with prior predictions, admittedly it could become a grittier matchup but right now the action is so frantic that is a solid option. Much like the game later on the home side are outsiders in the odds, for 2.90 I wouldn't pass on Montreal to shake things up.


Chicago Blackhawks 2.20, Minnesota Wild 2.85

No surprises yet in this series between the two Central Division foes and Chicago are looking to press home their advantage after taking a 2-0 series lead.

Again a couple of late goals added to the margin of victory which flattered the Blackhawks even though you'd have to consider them deserving winners of either contest. Because of the added focus on gritty goals at this time of year power forwards assume key roles in their team's fortunes, Charlie Coyle has played well for Minny but Bryan Bickell is coming into his own after a hugely disappointing regular season and already has five points over the first two encounters.

Another Blackhawk who clearly relishes the postseason is goalie Corey Crawford as his numbers are significantly up on what he'd been posting throughout the year, working out how to solve him is difficult enough when Chicago's defence is so complete. Playing in front of their own fans as well as needing to win should free the Wild up to press a bit more as they haven't been devoid of quality chances, a positive start is also critical and probably lives or dies with the first goal.

Having to take these next two games is a predicament Minnesota are extremely familiar with, the three very controlled home victories they secured in the first round are testament to that and I think the Wild are worth taking tonight.

Best Bet: Minnesota Wild to win at 2.85