Check out our latest 2021 NHL playoff picks on upcoming games and ongoing series.
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The 2021 NHL playoffs are getting more wild by the game. Eight teams remain in pursuit of the Stanley Cup, and most of the second-round series are beginning to take discernible shape. Our 2021 NHL playoff picks will focus on both the most up-to-date game lines and series prices for the Boston Bruins vs. New York Islanders and Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Carolina Hurricanes matchups.
To get us started, let's zero in on those ongoing series prices, courtesy of the folks over at BetOnline:
Like always, you'll want to confirm these NHL futures before making any decisions. The odds will move depending on the outcomes of individual games and might even be pulled from the bet slip entirely as the series gets closer to revealing a victor.
Updated NHL Playoff Predictions
Prior to diving into the aforementioned series prices, we'll first break down the games that will be played by these same teams. Here are the latest NHL playoff game odds, once again via BetOnline:
|Boston Bruins||-134||+121||New York Islanders|
|Carolina Hurricanes||-190||+165||Tampa Bay Lightning|
You will want to confirm these NHL playoff lines before making any decisions, as well. Though game odds are less likely to move dramatically, they can shift between now and Thursday night's opening faceoff.
Boston Bruins (-134) vs. New York Islanders (+121)
Our faith in the Islanders knows no bounds right now. We have been riding them ever since they were busy upsetting the Pittsburgh Penguins in Round 1.
Billed as a defense-first team, the Islanders have found a new offensive gear since the start of the postseason. Led by both the scoring and passing stylings of Anthony Beauvillier, they rank third in total goals scored during the playoffs.
Nothing that's transpired thus far makes us doubt New York's offensive ascension. People were worried after they tallied just two goals in Game 1, but they followed them up with four scores—and an overtime win—in Game 2.
It also feels odd to us that Boston would be listed as the favorite when they are the away team. They have not been especially encouraging on the road this year, at least not during the regular season. This feels like yet another opportunity to capitalize on deflated Islanders odds.
OSB Prediction: Islanders (+121)
Carolina Hurricanes (-190) vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (+165)
If anyone's wondering why the Hurricanes are favored, it's because they're getting their first licks at home, where they've lost just three times all year (five draws). So, there is a method to these odds.
Tampa Bay has, by far, the better team in this series. Their defense between the posts has been stellar all playoffs, and no team has scored more goals since the regular season ended.
What's more, the Hurricanes haven't even withstood the Lightning's best shot yet. They scored just two goals in each of the first two tilts, both of which were victories. Carolina won't be able to keep Victor Hedman and Nikita Kucherov in check forever.
Winning three straight against the same team is ridiculously hard in the NHL, but we could see this being a game that gets away from the Hurricanes in a big way. Pounce on the Lightning returning better than even money while you can.
OSB Prediction: Lightning (+165)
NHL Second-Round Series Predictions
Since sportsbooks typically pull series prices on gamedays, the latest odds on June 2 do not include the Winnipeg Jets vs. Montreal Canadiens or Colorado Avalanche vs. Vegas Golden Knights showdowns. We'll have more on these teams as the playoffs progress.
In the meantime, let's focus on the series prices for the teams we just discussed above.
Boston Bruins (-190) vs. New York Islanders (+175)
It boggles our mind that the Islanders remain this much of an underdog. Haven't sportsbooks checked out their offensive improvement? Or their stalwart defensive play? Or their capacity to kill power plays?
Look, the Bruins are no slouches. They have the third largest point differential of the entire playoffs. But they are not built to blow out the Islanders. Every game figures to be tight, and given the depth of New York's lines, any contest that leaks into overtime favors them.
Game 3 projects as a turning point for this series. If the Bruins win by a wide margin, perhaps we'll need to recalibrate our stance. If they lose, the Islanders should almost immediately become series favorites. So, in the event you believe in them like we do, it's time to pony up.
OSB Series Prediction: Islanders (+175)
Tampa Bay Lightning (-725) vs. Carolina Hurricanes (+545)
We get there will be a temptation to select the Hurricanes. Their defense ranked in the top five during the regular season, and a prospective 5.5-to-1 payout obviously intrigues.
Still, it's smart to resist the urge.
Something is off on the Hurricanes' defense. That was clear before this series. They didn't get the same top-tier goalie or defensemen play in the first round, and as we already noted, they've yet to get a real offensive outbreak from Tampa Bay.
As far as we're concerned, this series is already over.
OSB Series Prediction: Lightning (-725)
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