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Murph’s Lock April 10: Game 1: St. Louis Blues @ Winnipeg Jets (8 PM ET, NHL Network)
Before the 2018-19 NHL season began, the Winnipeg Jets were the en vogue pick to win the Stanley Cup. Following a run to the 2018 Western Conference Final, where they fell in five games to the upstart and Cinderella team of the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs, the Vegas Golden Knights in five games, many felt the Jets would return to the conference final and get over the hump for their first ever Stanley Cup in 2019. Well after a roller coaster and lackluster stretch run this season in which they lost the Central Division to Nashville, many of those same pundits have jumped off the Jets bandwagon.
The Jets will face the St. Louis Blues, who were dead last in the NHL on January 1 and had an amazing turnaround in which they almost won the Central Division. Rookie goalie Jordan Binnington has become the media darling and the money is pouring in on the Blues to not only win this game and this series but also the West! Slow your roll there bandwagoners! The Jets are about to remind everyone why they were the preseason pick to hoist Lord Stanley and that’s because they’re built for playoff hockey. People forget that for much of the last two months, the Jets defense was without key cogs Dustin Byfuglien and Josh Morrisey. Well, those two bruisers are back and their presence will be immense as they shut down the Blues offense.
Take the Jets Puck Line in Game 1 and the Jets (+107) to win the series.
Pick: Jets -1.5 (+230)
Here’s my other Stanley Cup playoffs opening night picks and series picks for each:
Game 1: Columbus Blue Jackets @ Tampa Bay Lightning (7 PM ET, USA Network)
Pick: Blue Jackets (+203)
Series Pick: Blue Jackets in 6 (+325)
Game 1: Pittsburgh Penguins @ NY Islanders (7 PM ET, NBCSN)
Pick: Islanders (-103), Under 5.5 (-129)
Series Pick: Islanders in 5 (+134)
Game 1: Dallas Stars @ Nashville Predators (9:30 PM ET, USA Network)
Pick: Under 5 (-103)
Series Pick: Predators in 7
Game 1: Vegas Golden Knights @ San Jose Sharks (10:30 PM ET, NBCSN)
Pick: Sharks -1.5 (+200)
Series Pick: Sharks in 7 (-102)
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