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Blues vs. Avalanche Game 2 Odds, Pick, Prediction: NHL Playoffs Betting Preview (Thursday, May 19)

Blues vs. Avalanche Game 2 Odds, Pick, Prediction: NHL Playoffs Betting Preview (Thursday, May 19) article feature image
Credit:

Joe Puetz/Getty Images. Pictured: Jordan Binnington

  • The Colorado Avalanche host the St. Louis Blues in Game 2 of their second-round playoff series.
  • The Avalanche dominated Game 1, but Jordan Binnington kept the game close for the Blues. Can he do that again?
  • Tony Sartori breaks down the game and shares his best bet below.

Blues vs. Avalanche Odds

Blues Odds +200
Avalanche Odds -250
Over/Under 6.5 (-130 / +105)
Time 9:30 p.m. ET
TV TNT
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

It’s time for Game 2 of this second round playoff series. The Colorado Avalanche are set to host the St. Louis Blues following a 3-2 overtime win on Tuesday. Despite the close score, Colorado dominated Game 1 from beginning to end.

So, will we see another low-scoring affair in Thursday’s showdown or can the goal-scoring pick up this time around? Let’s take a look and see where we can find the most betting value.

St. Louis Blues

The St. Louis Blues will look to bounce back in Game 2 after hanging around to force overtime in Game 1. There was only one reason the Blues did not lose Game 1 by five goals and that is starting goaltender Jordan Binnington.

Binnington stopped 51 of 54 shots (0.944 save percentage) and generated +2.11 goals saved above expected (GSAx).

I am not expecting much regression in Game 2 as Binnington has been incredible throughout playoffs. Since taking over before Game 4 of St. Louis’ first-round series against the Minnesota Wild, Binnington has produced a 0.944 save percentage and a 60-minute average of +1.02 GSAx.

This GSAx per 60 minutes figure puts him second amongst starting goaltenders remaining in the playoffs. Another reason I’m not worried about regression for Binnington is that we have seen this before — when he led the Blues to the Stanley Cup in 2019.

On the other hand, St. Louis’ offense struggled to generate anything against Colorado. Despite the game going into overtime, the Blues were still only able to manage to generate 1.87 expected goals for (xGF).

This makes sense as the Blues only recorded 25 shots on goal throughout the entire game, including zero shots in overtime. In fact, their only two goals were created off a turnover and off a bad line change by Colorado.

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Colorado Avalanche

The Avalanche look to extend their series lead to 2-0 before traveling to St. Louis for Game 3. While the offensive firepower of Colorado always seems to get the attention, it is really the defense that sets the Avalanche apart from the rest of the league.

Led by the superstar duo of Cale Makar and Devon Toews, Colorado is a terribly difficult team to enter the zone on and create high-danger scoring chances. We have seen this to be true all season as Colorado ranks fourth in the league in five-on-five expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA).

In the playoffs, the Avalanche lead the field in five-on-five xGA per 60 minutes at just 1.84. Their rockstar blue line has taken much of the pressure off of starting goaltender Darcy Kuemper, who has taken advantage of the situation.

Thus far in the postseason Kuemper boasts a 0.930 save percentage and a 1.67 goals allowed average. While it is no secret Colorado has an outstanding offense to pair with its amazing blue line, I have faith in Binnington to keep the Avalanche in check once again in Game 2.

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Blues vs. Avalanche Pick

Game 2 is a good case of “pick your poison.” While there is absolutely no way you can bet against Colorado right now, there is also a great argument to be made in not being able to bet against Binnington.

With those two things in mind, and with how Game 1 played out, I like Game 2 to go under the total at plus-money. This bet certainly hinges on Binnington being able to shut down Colorado once again, but history has proven he is very much capable of doing so.

The Blues’ offense, which is one of the deepest in the league, was completely lost in Game 1 and was having an enormous amount of difficulty entering the zone. Even with the adjustments that will be made, I do not expect much positive regression from the St. Louis offense.

Pick: Total Under 6.5 Goals (+110 | Play to (+100)

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