Pittsburgh Penguins (41-24-7) at Montreal Canadiens (33-32-9)
NHL Hockey: Friday, August 7, 2020 at 4:00 pm (Scotiabank Arena)
The Line: Montreal Canadiens +139 / Pittsburgh Penguins -157 --- Over/Under: 5.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
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The Pittsburgh Penguins and the Montreal Canadiens meet in game four of their best-of-five qualifying round series from Scotiabank Arena on Friday night.
The Pittsburgh Penguins will look to force a game five after falling behind 2-1 in the series with Montreal winning game three by a final count of 4-3 last time out. Shea Weber gave the Canadiens the lead just under five minutes into the game but Patric Hornqvist and Jason Zucker would help Pittsburgh tie the game and take a 2-1 lead in a span of :59 just before the midway point of the opening frame. Teddy Blueger pushed Pittsburgh’s lead to 3-1 early in the 2nd period, but Jonathan Drouin would pull a goal back for the Habs just after the midway point of the second and Paul Byron would tie the game at three for Montreal with just over three minutes to go in the middle frame. Jeff Petry pushed Montreal in front 4-3 early in the 3rd, and despite Pittsburgh’s best efforts to tie the game late, Montreal would stand tall and shut the door on any comeback attempt by the Canadiens, holding on for a massive win in game three.
Carey Price got the win in goal for Montreal after stopping 30 of 33 shots faced in the win while Matt Murray ended up with the loss for Pittsburgh after giving up four goals on 31 shots faced in defeat.
Pittsburgh is 7-1 in their last 8 Friday games and 1-7 in their last 8 playoff games as a favorite while the under is 11-5-2 in their last 18 games against a team with a losing record. Montreal is 3-7 in their last 10 games against a team with a winning record and 9-3 in their last 12 Friday games while the under is 11-2-3 in their last 16 playoff games as an underdog. The underdog is 7-2 in the last 9 meetings between these two teams.
I get why Pittsburgh is favored as it’s hard to conceive that Pittsburgh on the brink of elimination against a #12 seed. However, we knew that this was a possibility like it or not, and the Canadiens have been the better team as they’ve been playing loose with nothing to lose really as there weren’t any legitimate expectations for them coming into this set. I think all of the pressure is on Pittsburgh for obvious reason, and we’ve seen little in the first three games to suggest that the pressure will bring the best out of the Penguins. I think Montreal completes the upset with a win here so I’ll take the Habs and the plus money in this one.