Gary | Wed 24/05/2017 - 20:14 EDT

Home sweet home for Pens in Game 7?

Home sweet home for Pens in Game 7?

When Seven Isn't A Lucky Number

If the Pittsburgh Penguins were a baseball player, they'd be the superstars of Game 7 on home ice. In Stanley Cup play, Pittsburgh is 3-7 at home in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup playoffs, a .300 average.

But that's sensational compared to the 0-5 overall mark assembled by the Ottawa Senators in Game 7 settings. The rulebook says that one of these teams must win and advance to the Stanley Cup final. Who's it going to be? Let's break that down, utilizing odds provided by BetOnline.ag:

Ottawa Senators (+178) at Pittsburgh Penguins (-198)

pens

There are omens and trends all over the place as the Eastern Conference final goes to Game 7, so it depends on which mojo you want to back. 

For starters, the Penguins are 0-7 in Game 7 on home ice when they lose Game 6 on the road.

On the other hand, Pittsburgh won Game 7 at Washington in the second round and took Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final on home ice from Tampa Bay a year ago.

Penguins forward Matt Cullen has never lost a Game 7. He's 6-0. Penguins forward Carl Hagelin is 7-1 in Game 7. Pittsburgh forward Bryan Rust has scored the series-clinching goal for the Penguins in their last two Game 7 situations.

Each of Pittsburgh's superstars, captain Sidney Crosby and playoff scoring leader Evgeni Malkin, have emerged victorious in four of the six Game 7s in which they've played.

Then we have the Senators, who haven't played in a Game 7 since 2012 and have never won one.

Then again, Senators coach Guy Boucher guided the Lightning to a Game 7 victory over the Penguins at Pittsburgh in 2011 and Senators forwards Chris Kelly and Derick Brassard are both 4-1 in Game 7 scenarios. 

For Ottawa to win, the Senators need it to be a slow-paced game such as Game 6, when the play stopped 81 times. Ottawa must get ahead on the scoreboard and be able to dictate how the game will be played. The Senators want to be able to play patiently and wait for breaks.

They need Craig Anderson to be the best goalie on the ice and for Bobby Ryan to continue to net clutch goals

sens

The Penguins will want to turn this into a track meet, using their speed and skill to put the Senators on the back foot and left to chase the game. That doesn't mean a 7-0 win like in Game 5, but rather a game where they control the tempo and let Crosby and Malkin do their thing. 

Sens still a longshot

cup

Despite their emotional rally for a Game 6 win, even though they've forced the defending Stanley Cup champs to a decisive seventh game, it's still hard to find any love for Ottawa in the sportsbooks.

BetOnline lists the Senators as a distant Stanley Cup longshot among the three teams left in the hunt at +550. And if you were to opt to wager the field (Pittsburgh and Nashville) against the Sens to win the Cup, you'll get dismal odds of -800.

But if you're a believer in the Sens, +550 is a pretty sweet number to get on a team that's five wins away from lifitng the Cup aloft.

Pick: The Penguins (-198) and the under (5)

 

Results / FixturesNHL

Category : Sporting News


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