Stanley Cup Odds Game 4 Preview

You could not overstate the importance of home ice in the Stanley Cup odds action this year.

So far, through five games of Stanley Cup betting action the home team has won every single hockey betting matchup.  That bodes well if you are a Philadelphia Flyers fan as the team prepares to host the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup odds action on Wednesday night.

There haven’t been a lot of constants in this NHL odds matchup but the home team winning has been one of them.  The Hawks took Games 1 and 2 at home to open this hockey betting series.  Then it was the Flyers turn and they took Games 3 and 4 at home in Philly to even the Stanley Cup odds action at 2-2.

Game 3 saw the Hawks win again at home but it was a bit of a revelation for NHL odds fans.  Chicago not only won, but they dominated the visitors in a way that we hadn’t seen so far in the Stanley Cup betting action.  After taking an early 3-0 lead the team never looked back and the closest the Flyers came to wining was drawing the lead down to 2 goals, briefly, in the 3rd period.

The Hawks tinkered with their lineup in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup odds action to near perfection, taking Dustin Byfuglien out of the first line and pairing him with the second.  The hulking goal scorer responded accordingly by scoring his first goals of the Stanley Cup odds action and adding a couple of assists (2 goals and 2 assists).  This simple move and Byfuglien’s break out performance buried the Flyers and this team must respond in a strong way in Game 6 or the Blackhawks will most likely become the first team to win a road game in this NHL odds contest.

The Flyers have to tighten up their defense and that is especially true of the team’s play in goal.  Game 5 was a terrible exploitation of the Phillies goal keepers as Michael Leighton and Brian Boucher combined to allow 7 goals and saved just 21 of 27 shots between them.

That raises a very interesting and very important question for the Flyers as Game 6 of the Stanley Cup odds competition approaches: who starts in goal?

Leighton will likely be back in goal and he’ll play better because his defenseman will be better on the home ice with the legions of Philly lunatics cheering them on in the stands. 

Despite being blown out in Game 5 look for the Flyers to tighten up and get the NHL betting victory in Game 6 and push the Stanley Cup betting action back to Chi-town for Game 7.