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May 18, 2022
NHL playoff picks May 12: Bank on the Wild to force Game 7
Hockey fans are treated to quite the night as there are four NHL playoff games on the slate for Thursday and each one has the potential to be a series...

Hockey fans are treated to quite the night as there are four NHL playoff games on the slate for Thursday and each one has the potential to be a series ender.

The pregame narrative: The Boston Bruins, Edmonton Oilers, Minnesota Wild and Tampa Bay Lightning all face elimination in their respective Game 6 matchups. Each squad dropped Game 5 and now must rebound in order to keep their Stanley Cup hopes alive. Perhaps no team has more to lose than the Oilers, who were large betting favourites ahead of their series.

Here are our best NHL playoff picks for May 12.

NHL playoff picks overview

  • Wild moneyline (-109)
  • Oilers 60-minute moneyline (+114)
  • Wild vs. St. Louis Blues over 6.5 goals (-105)

NHL playoff picks

Best bet: Wild moneyline (-109)

Minnesota’s season is in jeopardy after the two consecutive losses to St. Louis.

One major development has occurred in this series over that span. The Blues opted to switch from goaltender Ville Husso to Jordan Binnington. That’s yielded positive results for St. Louis, as Binnington has posted a stellar .935 save percentage across the last two contests.

Read more: Maple Leafs vs. Lightning Game 6 picks

What’s important to note, however, has been the edge the Wild have held at 5v5. Minnesota leads this series in Corsi, expected goals, and high-danger chances, according to Natural Stat Trick.

The main reason why that hasn’t translated into wins is due to some pedestrian play from Marc-Andre Fleury. The 37-year-old has posted a mediocre .906 save percentage in the playoffs.

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Marc-Andre Fleury has allowed eight goals in his last two games. Photo by Michael Thomas/AP.

Fleury’s struggles could force head coach Dean Evason to make his own goaltending swap.

Cam Talbot hasn’t touched ice yet this postseason, but he was spectacular for the Wild down the stretch. His .926 save percentage since March 16 was the fourth-best mark in the NHL during the regular season.

The Wild are controlling the pace of this series and a switch to Talbot could give Minnesota a much-needed boost between the pipes.

Key stat: The Blues’ 30 high-danger chances are the fewest of any team in the playoffs.

Read more: Maple Leafs vs. Lightning Game 6 prop picks

Quick picks

Oilers 60-minute moneyline (+114): Darnell Nurse earned a one-game suspension for head-butting Phillip Danault. His absence will hurt but Edmonton will almost certainly be the more desperate team as it faces elimination. Despite trailing in the series, the Oilers lead in Corsi, expected goals and high-danger chances at 5v5. We like them to also force a Game 7.

Wild vs. Blues over 6.5 goals (-104): The over on this total has been a great bet to make whenever these two teams have squared off. It has cashed in six of their eight meetings dating back to the regular season. Additionally, one squad has scored at least five goals in each of the last four games of this series.

Odds courtesy of Sportradar, via NorthStar Bets, as of 11:49 p.m. ET on 05/11/2022.

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