Canadiens vs Penguins Betting Preview
Despite the many maladies, the Penguins were situated in the league’s top-10 in top-10 team in offense and penalty killing, and not far beyond that area in terms of defensive digits. As well, Pittsburgh put up positive possession numbers.
Oddly enough, as the Pens got healthier in late February, the team went into a skid and slid out of top spot in the Metropolitan Division. A major concern for Pittsburgh is in the net. Two-time Stanley Cup winner Matt Murray’s play has proven inconsistent this season. Will Pittsburgh stick with experience, or go with rookie Tristan Jarry, who’s put up better stats and was selected to the NHL All-Star Game?
This is the one area where Montreal boasts a significant edge over Pittsburgh. The Canadiens know that former Hart and Vezina Trophy winner Carey Price will be in their net. He’s the type of goalie who can get into shooter’s heads, and in a five-game series, that could prove huge. And the fact of the matter is Price will need to be exactly that good if the Habs hope to advance.
Shea Weber and Jeff Petry are a solid 1-2 punch on defense but Montreal’s issue is scoring at the other end of the ice. The Canadiens show just two 20-goal scorers and one 50-point player in their lineup. Montreal was 22nd in the NHL on the power play.
Montreal Canadiens-Pittsburgh Penguins Prediction
Both Canadiens and Penguins enter the bubble with concerns. Crosby’s been out with an undisclosed ailment but indicated he expects to be back on the ice when the team arrives in Toronto. Montreal forward Max Domi was late in joining his teammates at training camp. A Type 1 diabetic, there are concerns about COVID-19 and Domi’s immune system.
The Penguins won two of three from Montreal in the regular season and should come out on top again.
Montreal Canadiens-Pittsburgh Penguins Betting Pick: Pittsburgh Penguins (-195 odds at BetRivers PA App).