Put Your Money Where Your Mouth IsShareThis
New The Hockey News: Yesterday’s piece didn’t run until today, so here – on the mystery of the disappearing goal scorer
New USA Today: Final power rankings and predictions
It’s playoff time, and it’s time to turn my wealth of hockey knowledge into actual cash.
As a hockey writer or whatever the hell it is you want to call me, I make bold statements and act like I’m certain about how things are going to play out. So this, year, I’m going to prove that I know what I’m talking about.
I just put $50 into my Bodog (gambling site) account, and I’m going to turn it into $500 before the playoffs end in June (rich!). I’m not going to make some crazy bet that’s unlikely to happen, I’m going to slowly but surely build the numbers up with bets I truly like…..then when that doesn’t work, I’ll probably take some big flyer shot-in-the-dark type bets to get to the end goal.
Here are the five bets I’ve made on the first round that are going to turn my $50 into ….wait, what? $86.22? Hmm. May have to get more aggressive next round. Ah well, increments. You can check out Bodog here.
Bet one: Detroit Red Wings and Phoenix Coyotes will play MORE than 5.5 games
If this series were to end in four or five games, I’d be shocked. The Red Wings are the Red Wings, of course, but well-coached teams rarely get swept, and the Coyotes are as well coached as anyone. They’ll adjust and run their smother defense enough to give themselves hope late in the series.
Wager: $10 to profit $5.71 ($15.71)
Bet two: Jordan Staal will tally more than 3.5 points
I like this bet a lot, mostly because I believe this is going to be a long series, and if the Penguins have any hope (which if it’s a long series, they obviously will have), it’s going to be because Staal contributed offensively. I actually wish I had bet more on this, especially with no Crosby/Malkin in the lineup, and the general success of players like Staal in the post-season (ie. Johan Franzen).
Wager: $10 to profit $8.70 ($18.70) – I badly regret not betting more on this.
Bet three: The Montreal Canadiens will lose in the first round
I did predictions for a number of places, and I’m pretty sure I had this series ending in either four or five games in Boston’s favour in every one. They’re deep, intimidating, and have great goaltending. Not a knock on Montreal (okay, a small one), but I just don’t think they can hang with the big boys this year. (Apparently, Bodog agrees)
Wager: $10 to profit $4.55 ($14.55) – piddly, but it’s something.
Bet four: Of the eight 5 through 8 seeds, LESS than 2.5 will advance
Upsets, upsets everywhere, our NHL analyst friends always say. They’re guaranteed. For USA Today’s final Power Rankings and predictions (go read that!), it was one of the questions they wanted us to answer: who’s your upset pick? I had no clue who to say.
I think this will be the year when the top teams simply play like top teams and prevail – I picked both five seeds to win their series, so there’s two. I’ll probably be wrong on one of those, and maybe there’ll be one more upset to balance it out, but I just can’t see three underdogs getting it done this year.
Part of the reason I took this bet: the over was heavily favoured, odds-wise, so I can actually make a couple bucks by being right here.
Wager: $10 to profit $12 ($22.00)
Bet five: Tampa Bay Lightning and Pittsburgh Penguins will play MORE than 5.5 games
This one is pretty self-explanatory, as I mentioned in the Staal bet before. Two evenly matched teams with great coaches (note that both series I picked to go deep have fantastic coaching), and I can see with one being a real war.
Wager: $10 to profit $5.26 ($15.26)
Total wager: $50
To profit: $36.22 (and end with $86.22)
The math doesn’t add up – win $36 over four rounds and you’re well short of $450 profit – but you need some chips to play with before you can start making the big bets. House money, as they say.
If you choose to gamble along with my better strategy over the playoffs….don’t. I will inevitably lose this money, but it’s fun having random weird things to cheer for.
nothin‘ fifty bucks!