The Minnesota Wild were stunned in their building on Tuesday, losing a pivotal Game 5 to the St. Louis Blues, and they now need to win the next two games to advance to the second round.
The Blues are in a great position to close out this series at home on Thursday. The team has scored five goals in the last two games, though tonight should be a tighter game.
Do the Blues advance to the second round on Thursday or will the Wild win for only the second time in 10 games at Enterprise Center? Find out below in our free NHL picks and predictions for Wild vs. Blues on Thursday.
Wild vs Blues odds
This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.
The St. Louis Blues opened at -115 but quickly dropped to -105 at most sportsbooks. The Minnesota Wild began at -105 and stayed there. The total is 6.5 goals, with the Under at -115 and the Over at +100.
Wild vs Blues predictions
Predictions made on 5/12/2022 at 1:30 p.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.
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Wild vs Blues game info
• Location: Enterprise Center, St. Louis, MO
• Date: Thursday, May 12, 2022
• Puck drop: 9:30 p.m. ET
• TV: TNT
Wild vs Blues series odds
Wild vs Blues betting preview
Wild: No key injuries to report.
Blues: MacKenzie MacEachern LW (Out), Marco Scandella D (Questionable), Torey Krug D (Questionable).
Find our latest NHL injury reports.
Wild vs Blues head-to-head record
Wild: 2-4-2 SU, 34 goals for.
Blues: 6-2-0 SU, 33 goals for.
Betting trend to know
The Wild are 1-8 in the last nine meetings in St. Louis. Find more NHL betting trends for Wild vs. Blues.
Wild vs Blues picks and predictions
Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.
The Minnesota Wild are in serious trouble. They needed to win Game 5 at home on Tuesday to take a one-game lead in their best-of-seven series but instead watched the St. Louis Blues run all over them and win their second game at Xcel Energy Center.
Now the Wild have to pull off an identical feat, but the trends are not on their side. Minnesota is 1-8 in its last nine contests in St. Louis. The Wild are 5-16 in their last 20 games against the Blues.
The biggest problem for the Wild is the balanced scoring from St. Louis. During the regular season, nine St. Louis players had 20 or more goals. In five playoff games, four Blues players have three or more goals, two on the first line, one on the second, and one on the third line.
Minnesota doesn’t have close to that balance. Kirill Kaprizov has been a scoring machine for the Wild, tallying seven of the team’s 15 goals. The next highest player is Joel Eriksson Ek who has three. Then five other players have a goal.
Another issue for the Wild is defending the power play. The Blues have at least one power-play goal in all five playoff games. They are third in power-play conversion rate at 30%.
If the Wild can’t stop the Blues on the power play on Thursday, they are going home.
Prediction: Blues moneyline (-105 at Caesars)
Yes, the Over is 3-1-1 in this series and 10-1-1 in the last 12 games, but Game 6 is a different animal. There should be no up and down the ice. Freewheeling will yield to puck control and set plays.
That should favor the Blues, especially on the power play, where they are converting at 30%. They also have three deep lines that Minnesota has had trouble defending against.
They also got an added boost from goalie Jordan Binnington. The 28-year-old lost his starting job during the regular season to Ville Husso but replaced the 27-year-old netminder when he dropped Games 2 and 3.
Binnington has been remarkable in two games. He has allowed four goals on 58 shots and has a save percentage of .935.
Wild goalie Marc-Andre Fleury has been in big games before, but he is going to need his best performance of the playoffs if Minnesota is to have any chance to force a Game 7.
Fleury has played in all five playoff games and is sporting a 3.04 goals against average and a .906 save percentage.
Could Fleury be replaced by Cam Talbot? Whoever is in net is going to have to shut down the St. Louis offense. I like Fleury to do that more effectively than Talbot.
I see both the Wild and Blues defense playing a physical, low-scoring game. This could end up 2-1 or 3-2.
Prediction: Under 6.5 (-115 at BetRivers)
This wager comes down to what you think the pace of the first period will be. I believe the play in the first 20 minutes will be measured and controlled.
Both teams are going to be jumpy. The Wild, because they are facing elimination, and the Blues because they have a chance to advance. That should lead to more play between the blue lines and fewer scoring chances.
Game 6 should also be more physical. Minnesota will come out trying to slow down the Blues and will be trying to employ more checks.
In Game 4, the two teams played a slower-paced first period and the score was 1-1 after 20 minutes. I think the same will take place in Game 6 and at +475 odds I like the value.
Pick: 1-1 exact score after first period (+475 at DraftKings)
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