The Nashville Predators will try to stave off elimination tonight when they visit the Dallas Stars at American Airlines Center (8:30 pm ET).
Dallas leads the best-of-seven series 3-2 after winning a pivotal Game 5 on the road in Nashville on Saturday (5-3).
Opening Odds for Game 6
Nashville opened as a slight underdog at +100 on the moneyline. The Stars opened at -120 on home ice and the line looks to be moving in their direction after a rather dominant Game 5 performance.
Game 1: Dallas 3 – 2 Nashville
Game 2: Dallas 1 – 2 Nashville (OT)
Game 3: Nashville 2 – 1 Dallas
Game 4: Nashville 1 – 5 Dallas
Game 5: Dallas 5 – 3 Nashville
Stars vs Predators Statistical Comparison (Reg. Season)
|50-25-7 (22-15-4 away)||Record||38-30-14 (24-14-3 away)|
|289 (2nd)||Goals For||258 (10th)|
|223 (9th)||Goals Against||244 (16th)|
|53.25 (4th)||Fenwick %||50.06 (15th)|
|90.31 (21st)||Save %||90.68 (12th)|
|53.29 (8th)||High-Danger Chances %||50.89 (17th)|
Series Takeaways So Far
The biggest takeaway from the first five games is that Dallas has been better in arguably the two areas that matter most: (1) in net and (2) first line performance.
Ben Bishop is outplaying Pekka Rinne (and Juuse Saros) by a decent margin. Bishop has a .935 SV% and 3.83 Goals Save Above Average (GSAA). Rinne is sub .900 in save percentage (.883) and has a brutal -4.14 GSAA. The only goalie who’s been worse in the playoff is Andrei Vasilevskiy, who’s Lightning were swept in four.
Rinne was particularly bad in Game 4, a 5-1 rout. The Stars chased him with four first-period goals.
When it comes to offense, Jamie Benn (1 G, 6 PTS), Alexander Radulov (4 G, 5 PTS) and Tyler Seguin (2 G, 5 PTS) have dominated almost every time they’ve been on the ice. On the Nashville side, the first line of Filip Forsberg (1 G, 2 PTS), Ryan Johansen (1 G, 2 PTS) and Viktor Arvidsson (0 PTS) has been invisible for most of the series, while their vaunted top-four defenseman have surrendered a lot more scoring chances than usual.
Roman Josi, Ryan Ellis, and PK Subban are a combined -5 in the series.
If Rocco Grimaldi (3 G) continues to be this team’s most dangerous player on offense, the Predators will have a hard to winning Game 6, let alone making a deep playoff run.
Betting Trends and Streaks
Dating back to the last five games of the regular season, Nashville is 6-3-1 in its last ten games, while Dallas is almost identical at 6-2-2 over that same stretch.
When it comes to spread-betting, the Predators are a terrible 33-54 against the puckline, which stands in stark contrast to Dallas’s 46-41 record this season.
Be sure to remember that overtime in the postseason is 5-on-5 and there are no shootouts. It’s 5-on-5 until someone scores to break the tie. Teams’ strength 5-on-5 becomes more important come playoff time.