The number two seed out of the west, the Calgary Flames, will face off against the number one wild card seed in the Dallas Stars for game one in the first round. The Stars had a very close postseason scare when they almost lost to the Golden Knights, but ended up actually pushing into the first wild card spot. Can the Stars find a way to upset the Flames in game one? It’s time to continue our NHL odds series with a Stars-Flames prediction and pick.
Here are the Stars-Flames NHL Odds, Courtesy of FanDuel
NHL Odds: Stars-Flames Odds
Dallas Stars: +1.5 (-134) (+180 ML)
Calgary Flames: -1.5 (+112) (-220 ML)
Over: 6 (+100)
Under: 6 (-122)
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Why The Stars Can Cover The Spread/Win
The Dallas Stars undoubtedly have their work cut out for them in this matchup. Statistically, the Stars hover in the middle of the pack for just about every category. Nothing is going to jump out at you, but they can easily swing momentum into their favor. One thing that the Stars do have the edge at is playoff experience. Half of the Stars team (and coaching staff) were a part of the odds-defying Stanley Cup Final run in the 2020 playoff bubble. That experience will definitely bring light to their deep playoff run hopes.
The Stars are overall pretty healthy, but goaltenders Jake Oettinger and Scott Wedgewood will look to split reps until Oettinger becomes fully healthy – hopefully for Stars fans, that’ll be very soon. With that said, it’s not super clear who will start game one, but either way, they’ll still have to shut down a dangerous Flames team.
Why The Flames Can Cover The Spread/Win
The Calgary Flames come into the playoffs after wrapping up the season in great form, going 10-2-2 in their last 14 games. They were always in playoff talks since the beginning of the season after missing them last year, but it’s clear that they belong where they are. The Flames are essentially healthy and have a lot of depth on their team while they continue to kill the competition on offense, defense, and goaltending. Speaking of which, star netminder Jacob Markstrom will get the start tonight as he’s been rock solid this season, posting a .922 save percentage while allowing 2.22 goals against per game. They’ll look to stay red hot, pun intended, and not only win this game but the series as a whole.
Final Stars-Flames Prediction & Pick
The Flames are just objectively the better team. They have more depth throughout their roster, more winning tendencies, better goaltending, etc. On paper, it’s very lopsided. However, the Stars are no stranger to putting up good fights against good teams. Other teams might underestimate the Stars with their lack of depth and scoring capabilities, but they somehow have made it work in the last games of their season, pushing them up to the first wild card position. With that said, I’m still going to the Flames at home. They’re coming into the playoffs on a hot hand and they show no sign of stopping. For value purposes, give me the Flames to win in regulation, also known as the 3Way bet.
While I don’t think the Stars are going to win this series, I think it’ll be hard-fought. Of course, it’s tough to predict a sweep in the NHL where anything can happen at any time. With that, I’m going to take the Flames in 5, simply because of the lack of depth in the Stars roster. I think they win one at home, as underdog teams typically do, but not much production beyond that.
Final Stars-Flames Prediction and Pick: Flames 3Way (-140)