It’s been a great playoff run for the Montreal Canadiens, who claimed the unofficial championship of Canada by winning the North Division title with series wins over Toronto and Winnipeg despite finishing fourth in the division during the regular season.
Playing a team outside of Canada for the first time this season, the Habs saw their seven-game winning streak come to an end with a 4-1 setback in Game 1. Vegas looks to continue the roll it’s on when the clubs meet on Wednesday night in the Nevada desert for Game 2 of their Stanley Cup playoff semifinal series.
This NHL Stanley Cup semifinal playoff game takes place on Wednesday, June 16, 2021 and will air live on NBCSN with puck drop at 9 p.m. ET from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV.
Montreal Canadiens vs Vegas Golden Knights Game 2 Odds
Money Line: Montreal Canadiens +226 | Vegas Golden Knights -255 [BET NOW]
Puck Line: Montreal Canadiens +1.5 -120 | Vegas Golden Knights -1.5 +100 [BET NOW]
Total: 5.5 [BET NOW]
Series to Date
Montreal has history on its side, but that’s about it. The Canadiens have a record 24 Stanley Cup titles in their fabled history, but they are significant underdogs against the team that shared the most points during the regular season. Montreal had the fewest points of any playoff club during the regular season, but they entered Game 1 of their Stanley Cup semifinal against the Golden Knights as the hottest team winning seven straight games.
The Habs stormed back winning the final three games against the heavily favored Maple Leafs before sweeping Winnipeg in the second round. Their play during the streak was highlighted by stifling defense and opportunistic scoring. The Habs held opponents to two or fewer goals in five of those seven wins and never allowed more than four.
Unlike their first two series, the Golden Knights won their opener. They managed to beat Minnesota in seven games in the first round and rallied from a 0-2 deficit to win the next four against Colorado. We’ll see how they handle prosperity after taking Game 1 with a 4-1 triumph. Vegas has won five in a row at home outscoring teams 24-9 in that span with the OVER going 3-1-1. The Knights were a huge -271 favorite in Game 1 and they opened at -255 for Game 2.
Nobody expected the Canadiens to get past the first round let alone reach the semifinals. They are playing with house money and that’s a good thing in Las Vegas. But the Habs may have met their match against a team that’s enjoyed nothing but success since joining the NHL just a few years ago. Montreal will have to rely on defense in order to even the series. They aren’t going to score a ton of goals since they managed more than three in just three of their first 12 playoff games.
They’ve surrendered more than three goals on three occasions this postseason and they are 0-3 in those games. Carey Price has the ability to steal a game boasting a 1.97 GAA and .935 save percentage through the first two rounds. But Montreal couldn’t overcome the relentless Vegas pressure and raucous crowd in Game 1. They will make adjustments for Wednesday’s contest, though.
Vegas Golden Knights
If Vegas was going to have a letdown Game 1 of this series would have been the spot. After dispatching the No. 1 overall seed by beating Colorado in four consecutive games, the Knights easily could’ve overlooked the Habs, who finished the regular season with 23 fewer points and 16 fewer wins. Pete DeBoer made sure that wasn’t going to happen. “You’re foolish if you look at their record and make a judgment on them. You don’t get this far without being a good team and beating very good teams,” he said.
Their playoff success has been obtained in much the same way Montreal’s has been. The Knights have gotten balanced scoring with six different players scoring at least four goals so far. And they got plenty of help from the blueline with three defensemen scoring in Game 1. Shea Theodore had a goal and an assist with Alec Martinez and Nick Holden also hitting the back of the net. They also got another stellar game from Marc-Andre Fleury, who stopped 28 shots and boasts a .928 save percentage in the playoffs.
Canadiens vs Golden Knights Game 2 Prediction
Our best bets: Vegas Golden Knights -255 / UNDER 5.5
I can’t completely look past Montreal, but the Golden Knights have been on another level since dropping the first two games of the Colorado series. And they seem to be inspired by the sellout crowds flocking to T-Mobile Arena. That’s something the Canadiens aren’t used to since games north of the border were shutoff to fans. A straight moneyline bet on the home team doesn’t offer a lot of value so take the Knights on the puck line since they will cover in Game 2.
Check out today’s NHL odds.