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Free NHL Western Conference Playoffs, Picks, Best Bets, and Parlays for 5/3/22
David Berding-USA TODAY Sports

Free NHL Western Conference Playoffs, Picks, Best Bets, and Parlays for 5/3/22

Last night kicked off the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs and there were a couple of surprises. Tonight the final 8 teams will get their Run to the Cup started with two games in each conference. The two top seeds from each conference (Florida and Colorado) are in action as they try to back up their tremendous regular seasons with a Stanley Cup.

We picked Carolina as our Best Bet last night and they were very impressive in dealing the Bruins a 5-1 spanking. That got us off to a good start for the playoffs and raised our Best Bet of the Day record to 47-29 since the All-Star Break.

We went an average 2-2 betting the MoneyLine last night and our overall record is 339-188 as the playoffs start.

The run for the Stanley Cup continues tonight with 4 more games on the schedule. Let’s see what Vegas is thinking about the 2 Western Conference games and see if we can get lucky.

Nashville at Colorado: This series seems to be the biggest mismatch of the first round. Colorado won 56 games and finished with 119 points. The Predators won 45 games and ended with 97 overall points. The Avs scored 46 more goals than Nashville and were dominant at home with a record of 32-5-4. They have a potent one-two punch in Mikko Rantanen (36 goals and 56 assists) and Nathan MacKinnon (32 goals and 56 assists) as well as strong supporting cast. Goaltender, Darcy Kuemper won 37 games and had a 92% save percentage in what was a solid season. The Avalanche look to be strong favorites. But, don’t count the Predators out. History shows us that strange things can happen in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Nashville has 3 very good players in Matt Duchene (43 goals and 43 assists), Filip Forsberg ( 42 goals and 42 assists), and Roman Josi (23 goals and 73 assists). They can score goals and anytime you have those kind of quality players you have a chance. The key for the Predators to have a chance against Colorado will be goaltender, Juuse Saros. He is capable of pulling off a win or two and he will have to be very good in this series. A lot of people aren’t giving Nashville much of a chance, but I think they will put up a good effort. I’m just not sure it will be good enough. PAPA DUDES PICK: Colorado

Dallas at Calgary: Calgary comes into this first round matchup as solid favorites over the Dallas Stars. The Flames finished with 50 win and 111 points to finish 1st in the Pacific division. They allowed the fewest goals of any of the 8 playoff teams in the West, but they can score as well. They feature three 40-goal scorers in Matthew Tkachuk (42), Elias Lindholm (42) and Johnny Gaudreau (40). Goaltender, Jacob Markstrom was steady as a rock, with a goals against average of 2.22 and a save percentage 92.2%. Dallas will counter with a veteran team that struggled to score goals consistently. They have three goal scorers in Joe Pavelski, Jason Robertson, and Roope Hintz, but not much scoring depth after those three. That usually doesn’t bode well for a lengthy run in the playoffs. Like most underdogs, the Stars will have to have great goaltending from Jake Oettinger who had an average goal against average (2.67) and a save percentage of 91.4%. I give the Stars a chance in this series because I’m never surprised at what happens in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but I’m taking Calgary tonight. PAPA DUDES PICK: Bet the MoneyLine on Calgary -220


This is a very shaky parlay for tonight.

Leg 1: Pittsburgh at New York: Bet the MoneyLine on the Rangers -130

Leg 2: Washington at Florida: Bet Florida -1.5

Leg 3: Nashville at Colorado: Bet Colorado -1.5

Bet $10 for a Payout of $55.28

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