by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
The Calgary Flames will be looking to start atoning for last year’s embarrassing early exit from the NHL playoffs when they open their best-of-five qualifying series against the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday as -120 favorites on the NHL odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
Calgary meekly bowed out of last year’s playoff clash with the Colorado Avalanche in five games, and has now failed to advance past the first round in six of its last seven playoff appearances going into Saturday’s game at Rogers Place.
Jets vs Flames | OddsShark Matchup Report
The Flames’ playoff failure of a year ago was all the more shocking after the club finished the regular season sporting the NHL’s second-best record. Calgary’s woes continued into the current campaign, with the team opening on a middling 10-12-3 run, and subsequently parting ways with coach Bill Peters under a cloud of controversy.
Calgary continued to struggle with inconsistency with Geoff Ward behind the bench, tallying consecutive wins just twice during a late-season 9-9-1 run before closing out its abbreviated schedule with three wins over its final four contests.
The Flames’ anemic 20th-ranked offense showed some signs of life down the stretch, scoring four or more goals in seven of the team’s final 15 outings. But Calgary has struggled to generate offense against the Jets, scoring just a single goal four times while losing four of their last six meetings.
And while the Flames managed to open last year’s opening-round series with Colorado with a 4-0 win, they have typically come up short in previous series openers, going 4-11 in their past 15 Game 1 situations.
While the Flames look to rebound following a difficult campaign, the Jets hope to build on a season-ending four-game win streak as they enter Game 1 as +100 underdogs at online betting sites. Like Calgary, the Jets endured their fair share of inconsistency this season. After opening on a respectable 20-11-2 run, Winnipeg faltered, going 6-12-4 over its next 22 games, putting its playoff hopes at risk.
With Vezina Trophy finalist Connor Hellebuyck standing tall in net, the Jets closed out the schedule on a 12-5-2 run to finish one point up on the Flames. Winnipeg has struggled to score in recent dates with the Flames, tallying just 12 total goals over their past six meetings. However, Hellebuyck has allowed just five total goals in his past four starts, adding value to the Jets’ +100 odds of winning this series.