Flyers vs. Penguins: Game 2 Prediction, NHL Playoffs Odds

The Winnipeg Jets will officially start their 2018 NHL playoff run next Wednesday

Sidney Crosby scored a natural hat trick, Bryan Rust, Carl Hagelin, Evgeni Malkin and Jake Guentzel each scored once and the Pittsburgh Penguins dispatched the Philadelphia Flyers 7-0 in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup playoffs Wednesday night at PPG Paints Arena.

The Flyers had no answers for Pittsburgh at either end of the ice in the series opener.

Who knows what even caused the puck to do that? The defencemen in front of Murray turned Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds into a bystander.

In the rest of the Eastern Conference, we have the ridiculous Tampa Bay Lightning, propelled completely by their insane offensive firepower; they scored 17 more goals than any team this season.

If this series follows the form of the 7-0 Penguins victory Wednesday night, it would be interesting to see if Neuvirth will again be called upon by head coach Dave Hakstol in a bailout situation, as he was two years ago.

Crosby wasn't done, however, adding two more goals in the third period to welcome Philly backup goalie Petr Mrazek to the 2018 playoffs by tapping home a puck on the doorstep at 7:41 and then completing his third career postseason hat trick with a deflection from the slot at 10:42.

"Look at their goals: deflections, back-door tap-ins, batted from the air", Flyers captain Claude Giroux said, in defense of Elliott. Hakstol declined to elaborate on his plans Thursday, though he's well aware Elliott's play was not Philadelphia's only issue. The Flyers will need to shut down the Penguins strong offense if they are going to go anywhere in these playoffs.

Philadelphia returned to the playoffs this spring thanks in part to its resilience.

Brian Elliott looked like the goalie from Calgary in Game 1. However, the Caps finished the season with a 12-3 record in their last 15 games, and seem to be playing well at the right time. I'd like to see my Pelicans play, and I might get interested in the progress of the Pacers. Through 83 regular season outings, 45 of its games have gone over the total, while 36 have gone under and just two have pushed.

Another loss would put Philadelphia in a perilous spot going home. Defensively, the Flyers is yielding 2.9 goals and 75.8 percent penalty kill per game. Good luck with that.

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"They did an outstanding job", Hakstol said of the Penguins. Philadelphia's top unit is undoubtedly risky, with Giroux, Voracek, and Gostisbehere landing seventh, ninth, and 10th, respectively, in regular-season power-play points. They played a heck of a game. If the Jets can do it twice in three days, they'll have firm control against sloppy Minnesota.

Mrazek has been inconsistent since the Flyers acquired him from Detroit on February 19, but in 10 career playoff games with the Red Wings, he had a 1.88 goals-against average and.931 save percentage. The Wild understand they need to be smarter in their own end.

That game gave the Flyers life, tying the series at 2-2.

The reason for the Capitals' playoff disappointments in recent years has been the fact that they have to go through Pittsburgh in the second round. "But it was a pretty even game after that".

Their best (and probably only) chance at abruptly and unexpectedly ending the Penguins' quest for a Stanley Cup three-peat is if Elliott regains the level of play he displayed before leaving the lineup due to a core muscle injury. Having a crammed and raucous Bell MTS Place certainly helped.

The Blue Jackets have been slowly making breakthroughs in the playoffs in the last five years. "We had a lot of energy built of that".

If it was any other team, the Golden Knights would be an easy pick to move on to the next round, but here they are in a matchup with the Kings, a team that knows exactly how to get the job done.

Will Game 2 follow the same script?

"The Golden Knights have been very profitable all year".

"I don't think there's ever been a love lost between Toronto and Boston or Montreal and Boston or Philadelphia and Pittsburgh", Laviolette said.

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