Game 2 Notes: Will Holtby and Fleury Bounce Back?

Game 2 Notes: Will Holtby and Fleury Bounce Back? article feature image

Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

The Highlights

  • After seeing a 10-goal outburst in Game 1, casual bettors may be drawn to the over again in Game 2.
  • Even though both Marc-Andre Fleury and Braden Holtby were off in the opener, their larger sample points to a bounce-back in Game 2.
  • What other trends, stats and facts should you know before Wednesday night’s tilt?

Overreact At Your Own Peril

Coming into the Stanley Cup Final, both Washington and Vegas were led by two of the top goalies in the playoffs. Braden Holtby came into the Final off back-to-back shutouts in elimination games and Marc-Andre Fleury entered the series as the clear Conn Smythe favorite thanks to his .947 save percentage — the best in NHL history up to that point in the postseason.


Both Holtby and Fleury had their worst games of the postseason in Game 1. The Capitals’ netminder looked lost positionally, and his rebound control was suspect at best, while Fleury was leaky and even kicked the puck into his own net.

In total, 10 goals were scored in Game 1, which can lead to an overreaction by casual bettors to flock to the total in the next game. This market adjustment happens both ways as people will overreact to both good and bad performances. Naturally, I’m expecting bettors to bank on goals in Game 2, which should open up an opportunity for a play on the under.

If you look at the larger sample size, both of these goalies have been very effective this postseason, and I’m taking the under 5.5 on Wednesday night. I feel good about both of these goalies finding their game — and casual bettors finding the over — in Game 2.  — Sean Newsham

All Over It

Like Sean was saying, it is easy to see the Knights and Capitals combine for 10 goals in Game 1 and be tempted to bet the over, but historically the under has been profitable in the Stanley Cup Final. Since 1996, the under is 72-42-10 (63%) in the Finals.

The Game 2 total opened 5.5. Of 1,114 playoff games in our database, only 440 (39.5%) have a total of 5.5 or greater. In these high-total games, it has been profitable to bet the under the deeper we get in the postseason. — John Ewing


Facts and Figures

Since 1990, four teams — including the Capitals — have played a Stanley Cup game in which they were coming off consecutive shutouts — all four teams lost the next game. However, the previous three teams (2008 Red Wings, 2003 Devils and 2002 Red Wings) ALL came back to win the series.

The Golden Knights are the first team since the Chicago Blackhawks in 2010 to play a Stanley Cup Final game riding a five-game winning streak. The Blackhawks beat the Flyers in six games, but since 2006, teams on a winning streak of at least five games in the Cup are 1-4 in their next game.

Ten total goals were scored in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Golden Knights and the Capitals, going over the total by 4.5 goals. Since 2006, when a Stanley Cup Final game goes over the total by two goals or more, the over in the next game is 2-10-1, a run that includes a seven-game under streak. — Evan Abrams