UFC 253 comes packed with fireworks from both inside the octagon and the betting lines as middleweight king Israel Adesanya settles his grudge with the unbeaten destroyer, Paulo Costa. Both fighters are explosive strikers and with ill will all but guaranteeing heated exchanges. Co-headlining are red-hot fighters Dominick Reyes and Jan Blachowicz facing off for the vacant light heavyweight title. Let's break down these fights and see which bets we can cash.
Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions: Anaheim Ducks vs Nashville Predators Game 3
NHL Western Conference Finals Game 3 Preview
In a battle of attrition, the more physical Ducks outlasted the Predators. The game began similarly to the first with Nashville quickly scoring on Anaheim. But Ducks' defenseman Sami Vatanen scored a late goal in the first and this seemingly shifted momentum back to the home team as they soon tied it up in the second. Despite regaining the lead, the Preds blew their gas tanks as the Ducks took over and won 5-3. The Predators will have to reassess their strategy as they head home for game 3.
Don't call it a comeback. Despite suffering two separate deficits, the Ducks were never out of the game. Some costly turnovers and breakaways were the main reasons why the Ducks got scored on but they did what they have done best: biting down on their mouthpieces and slowly but surely grinding out the Predators until they started squeezing out goals with many a result of the visiting team's growing fatigue.
Head coach Randy Carlyle is showing again why the Ducks won the Stanley Cup a decade ago and why they're perennial contenders by readjusting their game and stifling the Predators' offense despite a slow start and getting outshot. Ryan Getzlaf ended his three-game pointless drought with three points while their power play finally got going ending a six-game drought. This is an encouraging trend for the Ducks as their offense is again up-to-speed. They still need to find ways to neutralize the top line and find consistent ways to beat Pekka Rinne but they are trending in the right direction.
It was a tale of two halves for Nashville. The Predators seemed to have the Ducks right where they wanted them. James Neal continued to find success even trying to get into Ryan Kesler's head from the get-go but the wheels came off after Filip Forsberg's go-ahead goal in the second. Simply put, the Ducks muscled their way to victory and won the endurance test as Nashville began committing costly mistakes that led to scoring opportunities for the Ducks including Ondrej Kase's game-tying goal.
The Predators are still the superior team and their top line of Forsberg, Ryan Johansen, and Viktor Arvidsson continue to flourish. But aside from Neal and Mattias Ekholm on defense, the Preds need for more of their players to contribute on the scoring department. Especially with the Ducks' rough-and-tumble style of play, the Predators need a more consistent effort for sixty minutes and piling on goals on the Ducks to begin can be overcome. Rinne also had his worst game of the postseason surrendering four goals on only 27 shots. The Finn will bounce back and Nashville will reassert control back on home ice.
Ducks at Predators Prediction
The Ducks are coming in as underdogs in most sportsbooks and are an enticing bet especially if their offense is starting to click again. But the Predators are still the better team and Rinne's performance can only get better following his stinker in the game 2.
The Preds' top line will keep producing along with the defense as Nashville finds a more balanced approach that will let them control Anaheim utilizing better puck movement and calculated possessions. Bet the Predators to bounce back emphatically and win game 3.Nashville Predators (-155) SportsInteraction
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