The NHL Western Conference semifinal series between the Avalanche and Blues shifts to St. Louis for Game 3 on Saturday. Which way to lean at BMR’s top-rated sportsbooks?
Colorado Avalanche vs. St. Louis Blues
Saturday, May 21, 2022 – 08:00 PM EDT at Enterprise Center
TNT has the telecast of the only Stanley Cup playoff game on Saturday, which is a bit unusual.
The Avalanche-Blues series had been paired with Lightning-Panthers on Tuesday and Thursday this week, but apparently for TV reasons Game 3 of Tampa Bay vs. Florida is on Sunday instead of Saturday.
Avalanche vs. Blues: Series Recap
Colorado’s lone trip to St. Louis this season was way back on Oct. 28 and the Avalanche won 4-3 behind two goals from J.T. Compher.
Nazem Kadri and Cale Makar also scored for the Avalanche, and Darcy Kuemper recorded 15 saves.
Vladimir Tarasenko, Brayden Schenn, and Colton Parayko scored for St. Louis and Jordan Binnington stopped 38 shots.
The Avalanche did visit St. Louis in the first round of the 2021 playoffs and won both (5-1 and 5-2) to sweep the Blues.
With the series tied 1-1, Colorado is now priced at -350 to win it at BMR’s top-rated books with St. Louis at NHL odds of +280. The favored exact result is Avalanche in six at +260.
Avalanche Off Rare Home Loss
The Avalanche had just five regulation losses at home all season, easily the fewest in the NHL including these playoffs, but were upset on Thursday 4-1 by the Blues as they stole home-ice advantage away.
Avalanche Players at Home Performance
The lone Colorado goal by Gabriel Landeskog (fourth of the playoffs) at 1:49 of the third cut the St. Louis lead to 2-1, but the high-powered Avs couldn’t solve Jordan Binnington again.
Darcy Kuemper stopped 28 of 31 shots (the fourth goal was an empty-netter). It was the first time Kuemper allowed more than two goals in these playoffs.
The Blues’ defense did a great job on Avs star Nathan MacKinnon, who had eight shots on goal in Game 1. He was held to three in Game 2 and was minus-1.
MacKinnon did have an assist on the Landeskog goal for his 77th career playoff point, passing Milan Hejduk for sole possession of fourth on the Avalanche/Nordiques franchise’s all-time list. Colorado had 54 shots in Game 1 and 31 in Game 2.
"We got outworked and outskated," Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. "They were better, and we were worse.
Our biggest issue, especially early on, was that no one wanted to skate with the puck. They did a nice job in the neutral zone, but we didn't move."
Colorado had been the only team yet to lose in these playoffs and was looking to tie a franchise record (2021 and 1987) with a sixth straight postseason win.
The team has been eliminated in the second round in three straight seasons, but I still like it to win this series.
The Avalanche are 2-0 on the road in these playoffs, winning 7-3 and 5-3 in Nashville in Round 1 to sweep the Predators. Colorado is 16-7 on the NHL picks in its past 23 as a road favorite.
Blues vs. Binnington: Rivalry Recap
St. Louis lost its first home game of Round 1 by a score of 5-1 to Minnesota but then won the next two by a combined score of 10-3.
The MVP of this series so far and maybe the entire playoffs has been Blues netminder Jordan Binnington.
Remember, he wasn’t the starter when the Blues opened their last series vs. Minnesota but replaced a struggling Ville Husso after Game 3 and the Blues are 4-1 since.
St. Louis should have been routed in Game 1 vs. Colorado but got to overtime thanks to 51 saves from Binnington.
He followed that up with 30 more saves in the 4-1 Game 2 victory -- he has a 1.75 GAA and .948 save percentage in five playoff games.
Binnington’s 20 playoff wins since 2019 (when he was a rookie and led the Blues to the Cup) are the second-most in the league.
David Perron's Performance
- David Perron was the No. 1 star of Game 2 with two goals and is up to seven in these playoffs, second-most of any player.
- It was Perron’s fourth career in four multi-goal games in the postseason, fourth-most in team history. Hall of Fame Brett Hull leads with 13.
- Perron is the first Blues player with seven goals through eight games played in a single postseason since 1996.
Avalanche vs. Blues: Who To Bet On?
St. Louis has been great on the power play in these playoffs with 10 such goals, second-most in the league. Colorado ranks 12th on the PK among the original 16 playoff teams at 68.8 percent.
The Blues had lost eight straight playoff games against Colorado dating to 2001. Could they win again Saturday?
Of course (have you seen this series?), and they are 8-3 in their past 11 at home, but I’m going to take the safe route and take the home side on the puckline, and then we are protected either way if it goes to overtime like Game 1.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.