NHL Playoffs Game 3 Odds & Prediction: Flames vs. Stars (May 7)
Brett Holmes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Johnny Gaudreau.
- The Dallas Stars and Calgary Flames are set for Game 3 on Saturday night.
- After a pair of low-scoring games, expect plenty of goals in Game 3.
- Greg Liodice shares his best bet below.
Flames vs. Stars Odds
|Time||9:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
Two games, two shutouts. The series between the Calgary Flames and the Dallas Stars is shaping up to be a tight one as the Stars tied the series 1-1 and shut out the Flames in Cowtown.
The Stars were the last team to clinch a playoff spot in the West, but have given the top team in the Pacific headaches. Don’t sleep on the Stars, they’ve managed to surprise when many have doubted them.
Many have pegged the Flames as a favorite to win the Stanley Cup at +650. The Pacific Division champs have struggled to put the puck in the net all series after lighting up the league all season. They’re due for an explosion sooner or later.
No one has had a more effective season on the offensive end than the Calgary Flames. Carried by three 40 goal scorers in Johnny Gaudreau, Matthew Tkachuk and Elias Lindholm, the Flames have dominated the opposition. However, in the two games this series, Dallas has stifled them. The Flames have thrown them everything they got, but Jake Oettinger has stood his ground and only yielded one goal in two games.
During the season, Calgary was an exceptional team in the offensive zone and posted a 55.5 xGF% (expected goals for). They also had a great power play, scoring 22.8% of the time. In this series though, the Flames have put up 55 shots and controlled play with a 52.4 xGF% (expected goals for). The only goal they scored was a power play goal, so they haven’t been able to crack Oettinger at even strength.
Jacob Markstrom had a wonderful season which earned him a place in the Vezina conversation. The hulking Swede posted an exceptional .922 SV% with a +10.8 GSAx (Goals Saved Above Expected). In these playoffs, he’s only allowed one goal on 38 shots along with a +1.1 GSAx.
The Stars have always been a team in a gray area. Led by Joe Pavelski, young sensation Jason Robertson, Roope Hintz and experienced vets in captain Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin, the Stars have a ton of talent. In the bubble, they surprised plenty of people by going to the Stanley Cup Final. Since then, the Stars have been hard to figure out. Perhaps this will be the year they get over the hump and make significant progress.
Dallas did a decent job at controlling play, with a 51.43 xGF%. They also were a quality team on the power play, scoring at a 22.41% clip. In their two games in these playoffs, they’re close to their season average in expected goals, putting up a 47.6 xGF%. The power play has obviously been non-existent as they’ve only scored two goals all series, though one was with an empty net.
Jake Oettinger has showed up in these playoffs, only allowing one goal on 55 shots in the two games in Calgary. He’s also put up a solid 2.4 GSAx, stifling one of the deeper teams in the league. The youngster has proved to the Lone Star faithful that he can be a No. 1 goaltender in his first full season, posting a .914 SV% and a 1.4 GSAx.
Flames vs. Stars Pick
I, for one, am surprised at how low scoring this series has been. Both teams can put the puck in the net at a high pace, but goaltending has stolen the show. I had no doubt a goalie like Markstrom would be able to stifle Dallas, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how well Oettinger has handled his first playoff stretch.
BetMGM has Over 5.5 at +105 and I think going that route is the best course of action. No matter how great the goaltending has been in the past two games, it eventually has to crack.
Calgary was one of the highest scoring teams all season, scoring 3.55 goals a game. Top it off with the three 40 goal scorers and a 35 goal scorer in Andrew Mangiapane and you’d have to think the offense will come at some point.
Dallas isn’t the scoring juggernaut the Flames are, as they only scored 2.84 goals a game. Not to worry though, as the Stars do have a good amount of players who can light the lamp.
I would jump on the over quickly before the odds get worse.
Pick: Over 5.5 (+105)
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