It was another home ice win Thursday night for the Carolina Hurricanes in what has been a very consistent series with the New York Rangers.
Carolina took a 3-2 series lead with yet another low-scoring home win, which has been the case all series long for the home teams. North Carolina sports betting has been catching on to this trend as the under and the home team moneyline both hit again for Canes fans to take advantage of.
Hurricane backers will be hoping that the trend of home teams winning can be bucked as Game 6 is set to take place in New York on Saturday night.
As is usually the case when the unders keep hitting, both goalies had strong games, in particular Igor Shesterkin, the Rangers’ Hart and Vezina Trophy candidate. He once again faced more than 30 shots and played well in the 3-1 loss Thursday night, with 31 saves. Antti Raanta was much less busy (16 saves on 17 shots on goal), but at the end of the game he was the one adding a check to the win column.
It’s tough for a goalie to stay sharp in a game where they don’t see a lot of rubber so despite the low save total it was still an impressive performance for the man in the Carolina crease. Both goalies are on their games and Carolina's defense is as stingy as ever. The under of 5.5 is +120 to hit in Game 6.
North Carolina retail sports betting is legal at two Cherokee casino sportsbooks. Legalizing North Caronlina online sports betting will be taken up during the current legislative session. There is a lot of optimism that a mobile wagering bill will be approved in the House.
Hurricanes-Rangers Series Schedule
- Game 1, May 18: Hurricanes 2, Rangers 1 (OT).
- Game 2, May 20: Hurricanes 2, Rangers 0.
- Game 3, May 22: Rangers 3, Hurricanes 1.
- Game 4, May 24: Rangers 4, Hurricanes 1.
- Game 5, Thursday: Hurricanes 3, Rangers 1 (Carolina leads series 3-2).
- Game 6: Saturday, 8 p.m. at New York.
- Game 7: Monday, 8 p.m. at Carolina (if necessary).
Special Teams Take Center Stage
Special teams played a huge role in Game 5, with the Hurricanes' elite penalty kill nabbing a shorthanded goal in the first period to give them the lead. Vincent Trocheck converted a feed from captain Jordan Staal to open the scoring.
Carolina allowed a power-play goal later in the first period to Mika Zibanejad, but answered with a power-play goal in the second period as Teuvo Teravainen buried a cross ice feed from Seth Jarvis for his fourth of the postseason.
The Hurricanes have received scoring from up and down the lineup all season and that has transferred to the postseason with Trocheck, Teravainen and Andrei Svechnikov all scoring their fourth goals of the playoffs Thursday night.
Only Teravainen ranks among the top 20 in playoff scoring across the league, but in a low-scoring series having players across all of your lines that can score is a huge advantage. That has been enough to give Carolina the series lead.
Updated Stanley Cup Odds
Will Anyone Win on the Road?
Moving into Game 6, the biggest battle Carolina faces is simply its inability to win on the road. It was a trend not only in this series but also throughout the first round. The Canes have won every game at home and lost every game on the road in these playoffs. As the top seed this is enough for them to win the series, but in a long playoff run, ending a few series before the seventh game so players can get some rest is essential.
Carolina is currently +475 to win the Stanley Cup, third on the DraftKings odds board behind the Colorado Avalanche and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tampa Bay has already punched its ticket to the Eastern Conference final and awaits the winner of this Carolina-New York series.
When it comes to Game 6, oddsmakers are clearly up to speed on the trends so far in this series. Carolina is a slight underdog on the road and the over/under is once again set at a very low 5.5, a rarity for an NHL game and the under is currently favored.
Carolina bettors will surely be hoping their team can end its road woes, but avoiding a moneyline bet at the current -105 and instead focusing on the under is the best route, even with a tough -140 line on the over 5.5 total.