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Blackhawks Look to Rediscover Offense in Game 2 vs Golden Knights

Reilly Smith Patrick Kane NHL playoffs Game 2 Betting Preview: Chicago Blackhawks vs Vegas Golden Knights

That the Vegas Golden Knights continued their offensive barrage into Game 1 of their Stanley Cup opening-round series with the Chicago Blackhawks isn’t a surprise. But the Golden Knights appear to have also solved their defense and goaltending woes, which should have the rest of the Western Conference concerned as the teams prepare for Game 2 on Thursday night.

Chicago Blackhawks vs Vegas Golden Knights
  • Date/Time: August 13, 5:30 p.m. ET
  • Arena: Rogers Place
  • TV Coverage: NBCSN, ATTSN-RM, NBCSN
  • Opening Odds: Golden Knights -201 | O/U 6 (Line History)
  • Blackhawks vs Golden Knights Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

The Golden Knights have remained in the -200 range at some sportsbooks, but others are offering -215 or even -220. The total opened at 6, a half-goal lower than where it sat for Game 1.

Chicago News & Notes

Just about everyone expected the Blackhawks to be in tough in their series opener against the red-hot Golden Knights – but few could have expected such a one-sided result, especially after Chicago played Vegas to a scoreless draw over the opening 27 minutes. The Blackhawks have now dropped nine of 10 head-to-head meetings with the Golden Knights all-time.

One of Chicago’s biggest concerns coming into this series was whether Patrick Kane would be able to shake his minor offensive doldrums. After firing 12 shots on goal over the first two games of the playoff qualification series with Edmonton, Kane has only six total shots in three games since – and has just a lone assist and a minus-1 rating over that stretch.

Vegas News & Notes

That Golden Knights attack was humming along Tuesday, just as it did in the three-game conference seeding round robin in which Vegas scored 15 times to secure the No. 1 spot.

Reilly Smith scored twice and added an assist in the 4-1 triumph as the Golden Knights finished with 34 shots and prevailed despite coming up empty-handed on their only two power-play opportunities of the night.

Still, it’s what happened at the other end that bears mentioning. Vegas held a potent Chicago offense to just 20 shots, making for an easy night for former Blackhawks netminder Robin Lehner. Chicago couldn’t do much of anything with its two man-advantage chances vs the Golden Knights, and was dominated physically as well, with Vegas finishing with a 35-20 advantage in hits.

Betting Pick: OVER 6 (-115)

We don’t expect Chicago to slow this Vegas offense down, but the Blackhawks have to be better up front than they were in Game 1. Look for that long-awaited bounce-back game from Kane to help Chicago convert the OVER.

Shark Bites
  • Vegas has held Chicago to 1 goal in 3 of the last 4 meetings.
  • The OVER is 7-2 in Chicago’s last 9 games vs the Pacific Division.
  • Vegas has scored 4+ goals in 5 of its last 6 games.