The Vegas Golden Knights are just one win away from advancing in the Western Conference playoffs. Photo by @NHLonNBCSports (Twitter)
- The Vegas Golden Knights defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 2-1 to take a 3-0 stranglehold on their first round series
- Game 4 goes Sunday, August 16th from the bubble in Edmonton
- See puckline, moneyline and over/under goal totals within the story below
It was always going to be a monumental task to expect the last team to get into the Western Conference qualifying round to pull off yet another upset of the Vegas Golden Knights, and it appears that was simply too difficult for an overmatched Blackhawks squad.
Vegas has proven to be too tough through three games, with Marc-Andre Fleury stepping in for Robin Lehner to stop 26 of 27 shots en route to a lopsided 3-0 edge in the series. Chicago will now be tasked with trying to become just the fifth team to erase a 3-0 series deficit to win, though the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010 and the Los Angeles Kings in 2014 have done it recently.
The Vegas Golden Knights vs Chicago Blackhawks odds look very similar to what they were through the first two games, and oddsmakers don’t give Chicago much hope to make this a series.
We were able to nail the moneyline bet for the third game Saturday with relative ease, so read on to see what our pick is and whether or not the Golden Knights will sweep the series easily.
Blackhawks vs Golden Knights Game 4 Odds
|Team||Moneyline||Puckline||Total at DraftKings|
|Vegas Golden Knights||-186||-1.5 (+150)||Over 6 (-118)|
|Chicago Blackhawks||+160||+1.5 (-182)||Under 6 (-103)|
Odds taken August 15th.
Vegas has been dominant since the restart, winning all six games, and they’ve been hot fire even before that, taking 17 of their last 19 contests. They’ve also now won eleven of twelve all-time meetings between these two organizations.
The odds are even more in Vegas’ favor from game 3, where they were -177 on the moneyline, with them now being a -186 favorite. However, because the last two games have resulted in slim one goal margins of victory, they’re an underdog to win by two or more on the puckline.
2020 Stanley Cup Odds Tracker
Both Goalies Were Large in Game 3
Corey Crawford did everything in his power to steal a game for the Blackhawks, standing tall against an onslaught, where Vegas didn’t score on any of their three power play opportunities.
The same can be said for Marc-Andre Fleury, playing in his first game of the series and just his second in this postseason, where he in particular stoned Alex Debrincat who was all over the ice.
That was Marc-Andre Fleury’s 80th career playoff win, tying him with Ken Dryden for 6th in NHL history.
He’s 8 behind Ed Belfour and Billy Smith for 4th all-time. #VegasBorn
— Jesse Granger (@JesseGranger_) August 16, 2020
The flower turned aside all eight shots from the diminutive forward and was particularly strong after Vegas scored their second goal, but then went a long time without a shot. Expect a fresh Robin Lehner back between the pipes Sunday, which also gives Vegas an edge since Crawford will be going on back-to-back days.
Blackhawks are Simply Overmatched
It says a lot about how much better Vegas is than Chicago that they could perhaps have played their worst game of the series yet still come out on top. In the regular season they were 14 points ahead of Chicago, who, in a normal season wouldn’t have sniffed the playoffs.
• Duncan Keith & Adam Boqvist each had a mistake that led to both Golden Knights goals. Can’t happen against an elite offense.
• Alex DeBrincat couldn’t buy a goal tonight. He led the #Blackhawks with 8 SOG.
• Matthew Highmore played just 5:50. Why? Alex Nylander had 10:02.
— Talkin’ Hawkey (@TalkinHawkey) August 16, 2020
Veags’ high octane offense actually didn’t score four or more goals for the first time in six postseason games yet they still won. Don’t expect their fast, skilled wingers to go yet another game without many chances to score.
Obviously any team that is down 3-0 hasn’t been playing well, but Chicago arguably has kept it closer than most people would’ve thought, losing two straight games by one goal each time. Expect an overmatched squad that has never played well against Vegas to have the proverbial fork stuck in them on Sunday.
Picks: Vegas Golden Knights moneyline (-186), -1.5 puckline (+150)
Michael “Hound Dog” Harrison is well known in the sports industry as the resident statisitician for the Jay and Dan Show. He has worked at TSN for over 13 years, where he’s been featured on Sportscentre, That’s Hockey, That’s Hockey 2Nite, The Masters preview shows, and several more.