NHL Playoffs: Best bets for the semifinals include Golden Knights

NHL playoffs Vegas Golden Knights Montreal Canadiens
Jun 10, 2021; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Vegas Golden Knights left wing William Carrier (28) defenseman Nick Holden (22) and defenseman Zach Whitecloud (2) defend the goal as Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar (8) shoots during the third period in game six of the second round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

As the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs roll into the semifinal round, we take a look at betting the remaining teams the rest of the way. The New York Islanders are gaining steam after vanquishing the Boston Bruins in the NHL playoffs but now they must face a Stanley Cup defending champion Tampa Bay Lightning. Tampa looks like they are a very possible repeat champion with how well they’ve played thus far.

On the other side of the NHL playoffs, the Vegas Golden Knights continue to turn heads despite their franchise’s youth. Vegas went down two games to none against the President’s Trophy-winning Colorado Avalanche to then rattle off four straight wins to move to the semifinals against the Montreal Canadiens. The Golden Knights continue to smash the record book with their NHL playoff runs in just four seasons since joining the league as an expansion team.

But when it comes to sports wagering, and your action on these series, who has the upper hand and where’s the best spot to lay action? Here’s our take on the two series.

NHL Playoffs semifinals: New York Islanders vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

nhl playoffs new york islanders betting
Jun 9, 2021; Uniondale, New York, USA; The New York Islanders celebrate after defeating the Boston Bruins in game six of the third round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Coming off an impressive Game 6 win against the Boston Bruins, the Islanders face a monumentally tall task visiting the defending champions, Tampa Bay. Both Semifinal matchups involve a big underdog facing a powerhouse, I like New York’s chances to keep things close in game 1 if they can put a lot of focus on shutting down Kucherov and Stamkos. Sharps have hammered Tampa Bay which puts value on the Islanders.

Pick: Islanders +1.5 (-160)

NHL Playoffs semifinals: Montreal Canadiens vs Vegas Golden Knights

nhl playoffs montreal canadiens
Jun 7, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens forward Tyler Toffoli (73) salutes the fans after scoring the game and series winning goal against the Winnipeg Jets during the overtime period in game four of the second round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

No one outside of Quebec could’ve seen the Cinderella Habs make this run when they were down 3-1 against Toronto. Does Montreal have any juice left against the massive favorite in Vegas? Sporting a seven-game winning streak and impressive play from Tyler Toffoli and goaltender Carey Price, the Canadiens might not keel over and die as many analysts predict. They may not have the depth to keep up with Vegas for the whole series, but they have the tools to make sure Vegas doesn’t just run away with it.

Pick: Canadiens +1.5 (-115)

Bonus: Vegas wins the series in 6 games at +400