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A preview of the NHL Playoffs games this week - Betting preview and odds

A  preview of the NHL Playoffs games this week - Betting preview and odds

 NHL Hockey  NHL Hockey Sports Betting

The New York Rangers were back at 20/1 odds to win the Stanley Cup for those who bet on hockey back when the league's playoffs got underway in the middle of April, and at 10/1 a couple of weeks ago, but their NHL betting futures are now on the rise thanks to their big comeback victory over Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round of the postseason.

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Rangers Stun Penguins, Advance to the Third Round

The Rangers fell behind 3-1 in their best-of-seven second-round series against the Penguins, but managed to storm back and win Game 7 by a 2-1 score on the road on Tuesday night to punch their ticket to the Eastern Conference final. New York got goals from Brian Boyle and Brad Richards in that Game 7 victory and 35 saves from Henrik Lundqvist, who has a 1.99 goals-against average and a .931 save percentage through his first 14 starts of these NHL playoffs. Heading into action on Wednesday the Rangers had dropped to 4/1 on the Stanley Cup odds.

And New York's opponent in the Eastern Conference final will be the Montreal Canadiens, who won Game 7 on the road against the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night. Dale Weise, Max Pacioretty, and Daniel Briere all scored for Montreal in that clincher, with netminder Carey Price making 29 saves in the contest. Montreal had blanked rival Boston 4-0 in Game 6 of the set on Monday.

Blackhawks Continue the March to Stanley Cup Finals

The Chicago Blackhawks remain on track to defend their Stanley Cup title this spring, as they bounced the Minnesota Wild in their second-round series with a 2-1 overtime victory in Game 6 of the best-of-seven set on Tuesday night. Kris Versteeg scored in regulation for Chicago in that victory, with Patrick Kane providing the series-clinching goal in the extra frame. Corey Crawford stopped 34 of the 35 Minnesota shots in that contest, and he owns a 1.97 GAA and a .931 save percentage so far in the playoffs. Amongst the Stanley Cup betting favorites all season long, Chicago's series win on Wednesday night pushed them to 2/1 on those NHL futures at Bovada.

Chicago won't know its opponent for the Western Conference final until late on Friday night, when the Anaheim Ducks play host to the Los Angeles Kings in Game 7 of their second-round series. The Ducks had a chance to close out the set in Game 6 on Wednesday night but the Kings came through with a 2-1 win for those that bet on NHL games to force Friday's rubber match. Jake Muzzin and Trevor Lewis scored for Los Angeles in that game; Kyle Palmieri replied for Anaheim.

Rangers vs. Habs Series Gets Underway on Saturday

The Rangers vs. Canadiens series will get underway with Game 1 at the Bell Centre in Montreal on Saturday afternoon, with the Canadiens going 2-1 against the Rangers during the season. The teams combined for just four goals in those UNDER results, with the OVER/UNDER 1-7-2 in their last 10 meetings on the NHL betting totals. Montreal is 7-3 in their last 10 versus the Rangers.

The Western Conference final is then expected to get underway on Sunday, with Chicago going 2-1 against Anaheim during the regular season and 3-0 against Los Angeles. Overall the Blackhawks are just 5-5 in their past 10 games against the Ducks dating back to 2011, with the OVER/UNDER at 3-7 in those contests. Chicago is then 8-2 in its past 10 vs. the Kings, with the O/U at 5-4-1.

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