Devils vs. Hurricanes Odds & Prediction: Bet the Favorite in Game 5 (May 11)
Grant Halverson/Getty Images. Pictured: Jesperi Kotkaniemi of the Carolina Hurricanes
- The Hurricanes looks to clinch their second round series when they host the Devils on Thursday night in Game 5.
- Carolina has dominated the series so far and is favored tonight.
- Below, Tony Sartori shares his Hurricanes vs. Devils breakdown and best bet.
Devils vs. Hurricanes Odds
|Over/Under||5.5 (-120 / +100)|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
Game 5 gets underway on Thursday evening in this NHL Eastern Conference series with the Carolina Hurricanes hosting the New Jersey Devils.
In what has been a generally un-entertaining series, Carolina has won three of the first four games with a +10 goal differential. Will the Canes finish things off tonight at PNC Arena, or can New Jersey force a Game 6?
Here’s a look at the odds, as well as my Devils vs. Hurricanes pick.
New Jersey Devils
Outside of Game 3’s 8-4 victory on home ice, the New Jersey Devils have gotten smoked in every other matchup this series. Losing each of those other three games by at least four goals, New Jersey is in a tough spot going on the road in one of the toughest environments to play in throughout the entire league.
While goaltender Vitek Vanecek helped lead the Devils to victory in Game 3, it is likely they go back to rookie netminder Akira Schmid in Game 5. After going back to Vanecek in Game 4, the more experienced goaltender allowed five goals on just 17 shots for a dreadful .706 save percentage (SV%) before getting pulled.
Now, the Devils are in a difficult spot in net since you cannot go back to Vanecek after that performance, but Schmid has also struggled mightily in this series. Through three appearances in the crease this round, Schmid is 0-2 with a fade-worthy .830 SV% and 5.40 goals against average (GAA).
In front of the goaltending situation is a terrific young team, but they still fall behind the Carolina Hurricanes in every key category.
Since the Christmas break, at five-on-five, the Devils rank fifth in the league in expected goals for per 60 minutes (xGF/60) and ninth in expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA/60). While those are two terrific marks, they do not stack up compared to the Canes.
Over that same stretch, Carolina ranks four and eight spots higher, respectively, than New Jersey. For those math aficionados at home, it is true that the Canes rank first in the two most key metrics in hockey over the second half of the season, which makes sense considering their recent dominating performances.
Backing up this elite two-team is goaltender Frederik Andersen. While Andersen suffered a hiccup in Game 3, that should not overshadow his elite performance in net during these Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Through five starts between the pipes during this postseason, he is 4-0 with a commanding .930 SV% and 1.80 GAA (the loss in Game 3 was technically credited to Pyotr Kochetkov after he took over for Andersen and allowed another four goals).
Devils vs. Hurricanes Pick
Andersen’s strong play in net should continue against New Jersey, a team he has typically dominated throughout his career. Through 13 career starts against the Devils, he is 10-2 with a stellar .930 SV% and 2.10 GAA.
Fading the Devils in this contest – and series – is not an indictment on them, but rather a backing of the Canes’ two-way dominance.
Mix in a more consistent goaltender and home-ice advantage in Game 5, we should expect Carolina to clinch a berth into the next round.
Pick: Carolina Hurricanes (-125) | Play to -140
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