Minnesota Wild (50-30-8) at Chicago Blackhawks (52-30-6)
|Date & Time||Friday May 1, 2015, 9:30 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Chicago Blackhawks -149 / Minnesota Wild +125 --- Over/Under: 5
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The Wild look to continue their impressive run and exact revenge against he team who has ended their season the last few years as they meet up with the Chicago Blackhawks.
The Minnesota Wild were on the verge of locking up the league's biggest disappointment this season mid way through the league calendar as the playoffs were an afterthought for a bulk of the season but the acquisition of Devan Dubnyk turned their fortunes around and now they are back on track as a Cup contender. The Wild have a very dangerous lineup and made quick work of the St. Louis Blues in the first round who many had as their Stanley Cup champions and now they have a shot at taking down one of the league powers who also had a fast series in the first round dispatching of the Nashville Predators. Zach Parise will lead the charge up front and Ryan Suter headlines an impressive blue line but the difference in this series will come in goal as Dubnyk is hands down the team's starter whereas the Hawks have been forced to rotate between Scott Darling and Corey Crawford.
The Hawks were the underdogs in the opening round by name alone as many had them emerging out of the first round against the higher seeded Predators and now they face off against a team many had going out in the first round in the Minnesota Wild. However, if you ask the Hawks they know that Minny is a very dangerous team and that the Central division is incredibly tough to win and even though they have avoided a matchup with the Blues the Wild could be a tougher matchup across a seven game set. I think this series is going to be one for the ages and a number of story lines are already emerging and while Minnesota is going to get wins in this series I am not sold that they are ready for a tough environment like the United Centre and I think Chicago takes the opener.