Avalanche vs. Stars Game 5 Updated Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions (Monday, Aug. 31)

Credit:

Photo by Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Goaltender Pavel Francouz #39 of the Colorado Avalanche makes a save

  • Check out our betting preview for Monday night's NHL Playoffs Game 5 matchup between the Colorado Avalanche and Dallas Stars.
  • Find updated betting odds, predictions and a pick for the game below, including why Pete Truszkowski is betting over six goals scored in Game 5.

Game 5: Avalanche vs. Stars Odds

Avalanche Odds -125 [BET NOW]
Stars Odds +108 [BET NOW]
Over/Under 6 (-115/-106) [BET NOW]
Time 9:45 p.m. ET
TV NBCSN

Odds updated as of Monday at 7:45 p.m. ET and via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.


The series between the Dallas Stars and Colorado Avalanche wasn’t supposed to go this way. The Avalanche were prohibitive -225 series favorites before we saw the two teams go head-to-head. However, as we enter Game 5 it’s the Colorado Avalanche who are already facing elimination.

Since the series kicked off, we’ve seen some staggering changes. The Avalanche opened as -175 favorites in Game 1 and have since dropped precipitously, currently going off at -137 at DraftKings for Game 5.

Not only have the odds changed, but Colorado’s top goalie, Philipp Grubauer, is out of commission and the team has been forced to turn to Pavel Francouz. This has had a tremendous impact on this series.

Will the Avalanche win to extend their season? Or is there another trend in this series that is worthy of our investment?

Colorado Avalanche

It’s been a weird series thus far from the Avalanche. Despite the 3-1 series deficit, it hasn’t been that bad for Colorado. In terms of the possession metrics and shot quality numbers, it’s been fine, if not better. It has played two relatively even games (Games 1 and 3), and has dominated the other two to the tune of nearly 70% of shot attempts and 65% of high-danger chances.

No matter how talented your team is, falling behind 3-0 less than 11 minutes into the game is not a recipe for success. The Stars had a three-goal lead in Game 4 before Colorado had its first shot on net. The Avs didn’t come out strong, but the real trouble came because Francouz could not make a save for his team.

Francouz entered the postseason in a battle to be Colorado’s starting goalie. Grubauer ended up winning the job but he suffered an injury in Game 1 of this series. There was little to no concern about Francouz as he was actually slightly better than Grubauer during the regular season in goals saved above expectation, save percentage and goals against average.

However in this series, the Czech goaltender has been beaten 15 times in less than four games. He has stopped only 94 of the 109 shots he’s faced, which is good for a lowly .862 save percentage. He was even pulled in Game 4 in favor of third-string-turned-backup goalie Michael Hutchinson.

Francouz will almost certainly be back in net for the Avalanche when they face elimination in Game 5. The Avalanche will need him to be better if they want to have any chance as there is just no hope for overcoming a goalie stopping only 86% of shots in the postseason.

Dallas Stars

If you went into a coma in March and just woke up in time for this game, I’m sure you’d have a lot of questions about the state of the world and what exactly is going on here in 2020. Eventually, you’d get to asking what the hell is going on with the Dallas Stars.

Dallas is a team that has earned the reputation of a defense first, grinding, low-scoring hockey team. However in its last five games inside the NHL bubble Dallas has found the net 26 times, which is an average of more than five goals per game.

Sure, the Stars are being what some would call opportunistic. Others might consider it taking advantage of the atrocious goaltending I mentioned earlier. However, there were always signs that Dallas was underperforming offensively during the regular season.

Dallas averaged just 1.96 goals per 60 minutes at 5-on-5 during the regular season, which was second worst in the NHL — better than only the lowly Detroit Red Wings. However, its expected goals per 60 was 2.42, which was solidly in the upper half of the league. Sure, the Stars weren’t an offensive dynamo, but they were better than they showed.

Dallas has been buoyed by a four-line attack. The first line centered by Tyler Seguin has really gotten going in the first round. The trio involving Seguin, Jamie Benn and Alex Radulov has a combined 17 points in four games in this series. The second line with Joe Pavelski and Denis Gurianov has been the team’s best unit in terms of driving play. With guys like Roope Hintz and Radek Faksa starting to contribute offensively, the Stars look dangerous.

There’s a relatively underappreciated name in the top five of scoring in these playoffs. Right there alongside players like Nikita Kucherov and Elias Pettersson is Stars sophomore defenseman Miro Heiskanen. Heiskanen has 16 points in just 14 games while leading the Stars attack from the backend. He’s joined by John Klingberg, who has three goals and 12 points in the postseason from the Stars blueline.

Betting Analysis

Colorado is a -137 favorite in this game as the bookmakers are expecting a Game 6 in this Western Conference series.

Colorado is certainly more affordable than its price earlier in this series, but it’s still not a price I’m rushing to buy. By betting on the Avalanche, you are disrespecting the importance of the goaltending position or you expect Francouz to bounce back and provide NHL-level goaltending.

I don’t doubt Colorado’s ability to keep its season alive in another 6-4 game, which seems to be the norm in the series. But why pick a side when high-scoring games are the norm in this series?

All four games thus far have gone over the total, and relatively easily for the most part. Colorado has a dynamic offense. Dallas has a well-balanced attack. Stars goaltender Anton Khudobin has been better than Francouz, but certainly isn’t earning MVP consideration with his performance. As mentioned, Francouz is struggling big time.

It’s always smarter to bet with the streak and ride the train as long as you can, rather than trying to time the exact opportunity to get off the train.

I’m riding the over 6 train in this one and I feel comfortable laying up to -115. I doubt this game gets down to a 5.5 total, but if you can find one, even better.

The pick: Over (-106) [Bet now at DraftKings and get a $1,000 sign-up bonus.]

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