by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
The status of Matthew Tkachuk remains up in the air as the Calgary Flames prepare for Game 3 of their first-round series with the Dallas Stars on Friday night as a pick’em on the NHL odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
Tkachuk was forced to leave Game 2 due to injury on two occasions, and did not return after taking a hard hit in the third period. That will potentially deprive Calgary of the forward’s services when they hit the ice for Friday night’s matchup at Rogers Place.
Stars vs Flames | OddsShark Matchup Report
Tkachuk’s absence could not have come at a worse time for the Flames. After seizing the early lead on yet another first-period goal from Dillon Dube, Calgary quickly fell behind in the second game of this Western Conference series, and was forced to overcome a two-goal deficit in the third period. However, that proved to not be enough, as Jamie Oleksiak iced the win for Dallas by scoring with just 40 seconds remaining in the game.
With the series now deadlocked at one game apiece, the Flames will take over the role as home team for Friday night’s contest. The loss puts the brakes on Calgary’s three-game win streak, and marks the most goals the club has surrendered so far through six postseason contests. However, with the series now reduced to a best-of-five affair, the Flames have taken a dip on the NHL playoff series odds at betting sites, tumbling to -105 underdogs after vaulting to -220 chalk in the wake of their 3-2 Game 1 victory.
Tkachuk’s uncertain status adds to the concerns up front in Calgary. The top line of Johnny Gaudreau, Elias Lindholm, and Sean Monahan has been largely quiet during the series. The only production from the trio so far in the series came on a third-period power play in Game 2, with Gaudreau and Lindholm getting in on Sam Bennett’s game-tying marker.
This is all good news for the Stars, who are coming off their strongest performance since late February. Entering Game 2, the Stars had recorded just one win over a 10-game span, averaging a meagre 1.60 goals per game during that stretch. But with the floodgates opening, the Stars have regained the momentum in the series.
That is reflected in the series prices, where Dallas has rebounded to a -115 wager. However, the Stars still have plenty of work to do to overcome a slump during which they have tallied consecutive wins just once over the past six months.