Blackhawks vs. Wild Pick – NHL May 5th

Must win time for the Minnesota Wild tonight at home. Getting down 3-0 to the Chicago Blackhawks is a death wish for their season. The Wild have been in the second round on occasions before and it hasn’t gone too well for them. Again in 2015, it is looking like a familiar way to end the year for the Wild. They do however have a couple of games in front of them at home. The Wild will have to win both to stay in the thick of things, because getting down 3-1 could be a tough deficit to overcome as well going back to Chicago. Dubnyk was the savior for the Wild this season in net, an unexpected savior. But he is really going to need to dig deep here to get the Wild back in it. There isn’t time to revert back to Oiler Dubnyk, he needs to be the guy that had a 2.07 GAA through the regular season. Thus far, it hasn’t been the case, he’s been erratic and the Blackhawks have taken advantage of his poor play. Dubnyk has allowed 4 goals in each, which can’t be the case. The Wild aren’t going to get into shootouts with many people and win 10 goal games. I called that Dubnyk might be a little shaky and it came true in game 1 as we cashed in there. In game 2 he also didn’t have a strong game either.

The Blackhawks haven’t been without goaltending controversy. If Dubnyk is struggling early look for him to get the yank, and the Blackhawks are familiar with doing such a thing. They’ve flip flopped between Corey Crawford and Scott Darling. The Hawks have settled on Crawford, which I think was the wise choice. He has the experience and has been battle tested in these spots in the past. Crawford responded with a nice performance in game 2 in the 4-1 Blackhawk victory. Crucial game tonight for the Wild. Will the Blackhawks let off the pedal or will the Wild find a way to get back in the series? We’ll all find out tonight as the Hawks and Wild meet in Minnesota for game 3.

Chicago Blackhawks @ Minnesota Wild

With all of the problems the Blackhawks have had in net, it is no wonder why they have been playing in some higher scoring games than usual. A 4-3 game between the Wild and Blackhawks would have seemed like an afterthought earlier in the season, but as Devan Dubnyk continues to slide, and still uncertainty in net for Chicago, higher scoring games have been pretty prevalent. Those that have been playing OVER bets on the Blackhawks throughout the playoffs have been cashing in big time. And note that a lot of those totals have been posted at 5, so a lot of bettors have been taking advantage of that.

The OVER is 6-1-1 for the Blackhawks in the playoffs this year. Conversely, the Wild are hitting the OVER at a rate of 4-1-4. We are getting a total of 5 again tonight. I think oddsmakers keep expecting the Blackhawks to regress back to the UNDER but it hasn’t been the case. We are also getting plus money on the OVER here tonight. I’ll be on the OVER tonight as I think the Wild are going to get a boost of energy playing at home in Minnesota. As far as Dubnyk is concerned, I don’t know if he is going to find a rhythm. In any case, I think this game goes OVER the posted total of 5.