The Calgary Flames (53-23-11) look to punch their ticket to the second round when they visit the Dallas Stars (48-33-6) tonight in Game 6. The Flames have won two consecutive games after going down 2-1 in the series. More insight, analysis and a Flames vs Stars prediction can be found below.
Flames vs Stars Odds & Analysis
The Flames are favored to put this series to bed, but bettors didn’t like the opening number as early money has favored the Stars. Calgary has won five of the last seven meetings between these teams. The total opened at 5.5 in what has been the lowest-scoring series of the playoffs by far, with only 18 goals scored through five games.
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Flames Bring Road Warrior Mentality To Potential Clinching Game
The Calgary Flames have played exceptionally well on the road over the last couple of months, losing just twice in regulation in their last dozen games. Goaltender Jacob Markstrom has been a big reason why. He leads all netminders with a 1.21 goals-against average in the playoffs and is second only to his counterpart, Jake Oettinger, in save percentage at .952.
With the exception of a couple of assists on the empty-net goal that salted away Game 5, the Flames’ top line was quiet Wednesday. Fortunately, they got some help in the form of Andrew Mangiapane and Mikael Backlund, who each recorded a goal and an assist. Calgary has outshot Dallas in each game of the series.
The Flames are 7-3 all-time when leading a series 3-2 and eliminated their opponent in Game 6 on three of those seven occasions. Calgary currently has the third-best odds to win the Stanley Cup at +600.
Stars In Search Of More Offense
The fact the Dallas Stars have a chance to force a Game 7 is pretty incredible considering they have only scored eight goals in the first five games of the series. Only six players have found the back of the net, and other than Joe Pavelski, who has three, nobody has more than one goal. Captain Jamie Benn and defenseman John Klingberg have yet to bulge the twine and have recorded just a single assist each this series.
Goaltender Jake Oettinger has been the team’s most valuable player and has given the Stars a chance to win every game, despite their lack of offense. He leads all goalies with a save percentage of .956 and has been making timely saves to keep the team within striking distance.
Dallas has lost just once in regulation in its last nine contests on home ice – that came on Monday in Game 4.
Flames vs Stars Pick & Insights
Flames: Keys To Victory
Depth scoring. While all the talk is about Dallas’ offensive woes, the Flames are only averaging two goals per game themselves. Matthew Tkachuk, Tyler Toffoli and Blake Coleman are among a half-dozen regular forwards who have yet to find the back of the net. If they can spread out their scoring and solve Oettinger, then making your Flames vs Stars pick should be an easy selection.
Stars: Keys To Victory
Put more pucks to the net. The Stars are averaging just over 25 shots per game in the postseason, the fewest of any team. If they can create traffic in front of Markstrom and generate second-chance opportunities, they will have a chance to send this series to a Game 7.
Odds Shark’s Computer Flames vs Stars Prediction: Flames -160
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