Here are two game prop bets to consider for Saturday’s Game 3.
Colorado Avalanche vs. Edmonton Oilers: Edmonton First Team to 3 Goals +120
Offense remains a priority for the Oilers, and over their recent sample, that’s been more evident on home ice. Edmonton cannot afford to go down 3-0 in the series, and I am expecting a raucous crowd to help boost their performance in Game 3.
The Oilers have prioritized offense in their friendly confines, getting healthy production in five-on-five. Edmonton has attempted 11 or more high-danger chances in four of their past five home games, averaging 11.6 per contest. Still, that hasn’t resulted in a boost in output.
Edmonton has scored 13 goals at five-on-five over that stretch for a 9.7% shooting percentage. That’s below their postseason average of 10.7%, an indicator that the Oilers could be due for increased scoring capacity as output catches up with production.
This is as close to a must-win game as the Oilers will face early in this series. Going down 3-0 would put them in a seemingly insurmountable hole. Edmonton needs its best players to deliver, and their metrics support that increased scoring should be expected. The Oilers have the advantage in the race to three goals.
Colorado Avalanche vs. Edmonton Oilers Time of First Goal 9:00 – 60:00 +115
Although offense has been a priority, the Oilers have played with more structure at home, relying on line matching to neutralize their opponents’ top lines. That has resulted in more robust defensive efforts and tepid starts at the Rogers Place. Even though Edmonton has a couple of advantages in the race to three goals, don’t expect an outburst at the beginning of the contest.
The Oilers and their opponents have recorded a goal within the first 8:59 of a contest just twice in six home playoff games. Those slow starts are also reflected in Edmonton’s production metrics, with their most high-danger chances coming in the first period just once over that six-game sample.
Colorado has been on a similar trend over their past few games, recording a goal in the first period just once over their past four outings. The Avs recognized the importance of slowing down the Oilers’ offense, limiting them to 14 scoring and seven high-danger chances at five-on-five. It would be unwise to trade blows with the Oilers at home, resulting in a more conservative effort from the Avs on the road.
Edmonton’s defensive structure needs to hold strong if they hope to limit a dangerous Avalanche attack. At the same time, the Oilers are comfortable playing a more reserved opening 20 minutes before turning things on later in the game. That aligns with the recent trend with the Avs. Although the offensive taps may turn on later in the game, don’t expect early scoring.