Last week TNT was a smash hit for its NHL debut. The rookie hockey network brought personality and fun to the telecast. Yet, they were sure that everyone had all of the important facts about the game. Fans will be coming back for more on Wednesday night. And it's not just to enjoy the banter of the star-studded studio show. In fact, the matchup of the Blues and Golden Knights will light up the marquee. These two perennial powers are again expected to contend for the Western Conference championship. Vegas’ playoff flop last spring remains a rallying cry.
The Vegas Golden Knights will host the St. Louis Blues at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. This game will take place on Wednesday, October 20, 2021, at 10 p.m. ET, with television coverage on TNT.
Although the Golden Knights are in their fifth season, they are already established as an NHL power with gamblers. Also, the Golden Knights home city plays into their betting price. Vegas sportsbooks have admitted that they have to juice up the VGK price. Cause by local demand from home fans. The Golden Knights are the first major league team in Sin City history. At the onset, fans embraced the team. Especially after the mass shooting on the strip just a few days before VGK’s first-ever game. The Golden Knights’ run to the 2018 Final further enhanced the brand.
St. Louis boasts a large and generational fan base. Their status as a “Second Six” franchise and iconic Blue Note logo makes them a strong betting brand. Most important of all, their 2019 Stanley Cup championship cemented their identity as a legacy franchise.
St. Louis Blues
Since their Stanley Cup championship, the Blues have languished as good but not great. Of great concern is their lethargic playoff performances over the past two years. There is a sense that coach Craig Berube could be on the hot seat of the Blues stumble out of the gate. But as the old saying goes, “show me a good goalie, and I’ll show you a good coach.” Although St. Louis has several problems, none is bigger than inconsistent Jordan Binnington.
Consider that Binnington posted a save percentage of .927 when taking over the net in 2018-19. Subsequently, he slipped to .912 in 2019-20 and .910 last season. Even worse, Binnington posted playoff save percentages of .851 and .899 the past two years.
Center and captain Ryan O’Reilly led the Blues with 24 goals last season. Also, he added 30 assists and a team-best +26.
Vegas Golden Knights
Following their upset playoff loss to Montreal in the semi-final, Vegas cut ties with their franchise marquee man Marc Andre Fleury. It was Fleury’s blunder in game three that changed the entire personality of the series.
Now the Vegas net belongs to Robin Lehner, who split time with Fleury last year. “Panda Bear” has overcome mental health and substance use issues to become a solid starter.
Of great concern is that Max Pacioretty is out until late November. Cause by a lower-body injury. Also out is Alex Tuch. While Mark Stone is day-to-day.
St. Louis vs. Vegas Prediction
On the road, St. Louis paid in only five of their previous 18 games. And then the Blues are 5-3 over the total on road ice. By contrast, Vegas got the cash in 14 of their most recent 19 home games. The Golden Knights are 3-1-2 over the total at home.
To summarize, Vegas is 9-2 in their last 11 games with the Blues. This series is 9-2-1 over the total. Specifically, at Vegas, the Blues are 2-7 at T-Mobile Arena against the Golden Knights. The Blues and Golden Knights are 5-1 over the total at Vegas.
In this situation, Vegas has a true home-ice advantage. Perhaps the best in the entire NHL.
Bookmaker Pick: Vegas Golden Knights
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