NHL Conference Semifinal Action: Los Angeles Kings at St. Louis Blues

The St. Louis Blues again find themselves at a disadvantage heading into Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinal series against the Los Angeles Kings, but that may not be any cause for alarm considering the 4 straight games they managed to win after falling 0-1 after the first game against the San Jose Sharks in the first round. However, with tonight’s game back on home ice at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri, and the Los Angeles Kings already looking to be a much tougher competitor than the Sharks especially on the road, this match-up will be a crucial turning point in the series between two of the toughest defensive-minded squads currently in the NHL playoffs. With face-off set for 9:00 PM ET tonight, and home-ice advantage out the window for the Blues, if one thing is for sure it’s that anything and everything is still up for grabs in this budding series.

The Los Angeles Kings were fortunate to not be driven out of the first game with a resounding defeat courtesy of the St. Louis Blues, who were dominant in the first period getting the ice-breaking goal from David Backes and having two other potential scorers nullified by outstanding goaltending from LA’s Jonathan Quick. With three minutes remaining before intermission however, the Kings rallied back on an excellent pass by Dustin Penner to Slava Voynov, who buried his shot past Brian Elliot to pull the Kings even at 1-1. Adding a short-handed goal from Matt Greene in the second, and getting an empty-netter in the 3rd, the Kings were able to shock the Blues and steal Game 1 from underneath them, in an arena where St. Louis has been one of the best teams in the league, going 30-6-5 at home this season. Heading into Game 2 then, St. Louis’ focus has to return to goal scoring, in the face of a Kings defense and netminder that will both be determined to take a commanding 2-0 lead out of St. Louis as they head back to the Staples Center, an arena that hasn’t seemed much like home due to the added pressure and lower-scoring efforts that have been a trend for the Kings this year there. Though the Blues can look forward to not having to face such a tough road atmosphere ahead, getting back to even before making the trip West is certainly of paramount importance for Ken Hitchcock’s Blues, and finding a way to overcome the possible loss of key defensemen Alex Pietrangelo, who was boarded in Game 1 by Dwight King, and didn’t suit up for practice yesterday. A key component of both the defense and offensive scoring attack, it’s unclear whether ‘Petro’ will suit up tonight, but you can bet the Blues will have to adjust on the fly to fill the void left over if he’s unable to go.

With Game 1 incredibly balanced between the two teams, with 29 shots apiece, both sides failing on all power play attempts, and both pretty equal in physical play (26 hits for the Blues, 24 for LA), something has to give in Game 2 tonight, and for the Blues it’s essential to find a way to generate production on the power play specifically, where they were 0-for-5 in Game 1. Los Angeles has been good at not getting into a tit-for-tat war against their opponents (something the Vancouver Canucks failed to do, which ended up backfiring on them), so opportunities with the man advantage should once again come infrequently for St. Louis tonight, as LA’s coach Daryl Sutter keeps his team on a tight leash as far as penalties go. St. Louis, while excelling mainly on defense throughout the season, has to turn to its offense and be much more aggressive with the puck, seeing more shots on net from Andy McDonald, Patrik Berglund and David Backes, the three centers who provide the bulk of the Blues scoring attacks. With Alex Pietrangelo possibly out however, St. Louis has to find someone to step up their game from the defensive unit, as amongst the top-5 defensive leaders in ice-time, no player has a goal, and only 4 assists have been generated (with 3 of them coming from Carlo Colaiacovo). Pietrangelo has the same amount of production as the next 5 St. Louis defenders combined, so without him available to help on the power play, and be the main support on defense, the Blues simply need improvement from the likes of Kent Huskins, Barret Jackman and Roman Polak, the 3 St. Louis defensemen with no points during this postseason to date.

One area where the Blues were standouts in Game 1 was at taking the puck away (7 takeways to LA’s 2), which could be applied into Game 2 provided they can find a way to generate takeovers in the Kings zone more often. One thing is for sure to change tonight after a day of rest and practice, is that the Blues overall discipline, which resulted in 20 penalty minutes, must be improved upon. St. Louis had 4 consecutive penalties in the 3rd period alone in Game 1, which continually worked to halt any positive flow the Blues had down the stretch. Amongst those penalties, none were what should be called acceptable playoff behavior, with a high sticking being the least offensive, a 4-minute double minor to T.J. Oshie sending one of their best players out for 4 minutes, and a 10-minute game misconduct to B.J. Crombeen summing up a bad finish for the Blues after the Penner goal sealed the deal. While the Kings haven’t been great with the man advantage, they have used the power play to effectively kill momentum in games away from home, which has resulted in Los Angeles winning 4 straight on the road this postseason. Controlling emotions and playing straight up hockey, the Blues will find themselves in a much better position against a well-disciplined Kings team that doesn’t get involved with chippy play all too often.

For Los Angeles, once again and as per usual, all eyes will be on Jonathan Quick, one of three goalies picked for the finals of the Vezina Trophy selection. Quick has been a savior for the Kings throughout the season, and if questions had remained about his form in the playoffs (4-8 coming into this playoff season), he’s answered them soundly by going 5-1 with a 1.49 goals allowed through 6 games started. Quick is getting more and more help from LA’s sound defense, featuring the hard-shooting Drew Doughty, Willie Mitchell and Rob Scuderi, but for the Kings to really keep the pressure off of Quick, they are going to have to help out with generating more shots on goal against St. Louis’ Brian Elliot, who could be set for a clutch game at any given moment. Captain Dustin Brown, while relatively quiet in Game 1 of this series, has really stepped up his form this postseason, leading the team with 4 goals and 6 points with a +5 rating. Surprisingly, Dustin Penner has been a huge addition for the Kings in the playoffs, after another lackluster season of disappointing production. Saturday’s Game 1 may have been the best game of Penner’s year thus far, and seeing him keep up the pace would definitely bode well for Los Angeles’ chances tonight. Other Kings’ players to watch out for tonight include Jeff Carter, who has yet to log a goal in the postseason despite taking 18 shots, and Anze Kopitar, who has been playing well as an assist man, but who has yet to break out with a scoring streak like he’s capable of doing. Like St. Louis, facing a great defense with a great goalie means getting a lot of pucks on the net. Los Angeles simply must find a way to not only generate more shots, but also more attempts right in close to Brian Elliot, where he has the least time to react quickly to moving pucks.

Betting Lines for Los Angeles Kings vs. St. Louis Blues at Oddsmaker Sportsbook.

With St. Louis prepped for mounting a return to the win column on home ice tonight, the bookmakers at Oddsmaker Sportsbook have the Blues set as a -155 favorite to win straight up on the money line, while the Kings come in as tasty +135 underdogs on the road. Los Angeles was able to win 3 straight games against the President’s Trophy-winning Vancouver Canucks, so if the Blues are without Alex Pietrangelo tonight, expectations should be reasonable that the Kings could be a great underdog pick to steal another game away from a supposedly better team.

Against the spread, the Blues must make up -1.5 goals at +195 odds, while the Kings get +1.5 goals to play with at a -235 price. Though the first game of the series resulted in the Kings covering the spread with a late empty-net goal from Dustin Penner, we should expect a much tighter game with fewer mistakes tonight to keep this game very close and within one goal’s difference at the end.

On the over/under for total goals, 5 is the mark set to stay under or push over, and with the way these two teams play defense, and with the caliber of goalies in net, expectations of a higher-scoring game should be tempered. St. Louis knows it can’t make the same mistakes it made in Game 1,which gave the Kings a short-handed goal and the eventual win. With LA knowing the Blues will be in attack mode, expect them to wait quietly for a chance to change the momentum in an instant, which in turn should result in a more cat-and-mouse approach, a possible factor in keeping the points total to a minimum.

Look for a great Game 2 between two very well-matched, defensive hockey clubs tonight. With the Blues needing a win before heading on the road to face Los Angeles for two games on the road, all eyes are on St. Louis to even the score, but once again don’t count out the Kings’ resolve to play as the underdogs, and sneak out with another huge victory on foreign ice.

NBA, NHL playoffs continue, MLB Picks at Oddsmaker Sportsbook

Coming off another exciting weekend of excellent sports action and exciting playoff competition, one would be inclined to expect a drop in the available options for online sportsbook betting on Monday. However, with the NBA playoffs continuing onward, the NHL Conference Semifinals heating up, and with MLB Baseball transferring play into another week, there is actually tons of great online sportsbook betting choices to be had, and no better place to engage in those opportunities than at the top sportsbook at Oddsmaker Sportsbook. Jumping into the action straight away, take a look at some of the top picks of the day in the NBA playoffs, which has jumped out with exciting match-ups from coast-to-coast. For the 3 games on tap for Round 1, check out the New York Knicks trying to recover from a 33-point Game 1 loss to the Miami Heat, the Indiana Pacers looking to push even with the Orlando Magic after losing home-court advantage, and the Oklahoma City Thunder setting their sights on putting the defending Champion Dallas Mavericks in a 2-0 hole from the onset of the playoffs. As the NBA action ramps up in the postseason, the games and the sportsbook betting options will only intensify, leaving you with some great choices at the best online sports betting sites to come.

Checking out today’s options for the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs, two games are set to get underway tonight, as first the New York Rangers try to take a commanding 2-0 lead in their series with the Washington Capitals, and second the St. Louis Blues will attempt to pull even against the Los Angeles Kings, who handed the Blues an opening-game 3-1 loss to set the tone heading into Game 2 of the series. In the first match-up, Washington will try to rebounding just as they did in the first round against Boston, overcoming a tough loss on the road to pull even before heading back home. Getting more shots on net is important for the Caps, especially against the Rangers Henrik Lundqvist, who only had to deal with 18 shots on Saturday while the New York defense frustrated Washington’s top players. Look for a step-up in play from the Caps tonight though, as goalie Braden Holtby gets set to learn from his early mistakes, and the Caps top scorers including Alex Ovechkin, Brooks Laich and Alexander Semin will be full-on prepared to prevent the Rangers from going up 2-0 in this series. On the flip-side of the NHL playoffs today, look out for another tough defensive effort from both the Los Angeles Kings and the St. Louis Blues, as Game 2 will be a critical juncture in this series as well. Expect St. Louis to once again come out strong at home, where they were one of the best teams in the NHL, but don’t expect the Kings to let up on the defensive end especially, which should in turn make this a low-scoring game that stands a very good chance at beating the under points total set at 5 at Oddsmaker Sportsbook.

Wrapping up today’s online sports betting endeavors, check out today’s action in Major League Baseball, as a few teams take a hiatus while moving on to mid-week series, others kick off new match-ups, and a few remaining teams tie-up carried over weekend series today. For the top games on Monday worth checking out, start with a great Game 1 match-up between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Seattle Mariners, as Jeremy Hellickson gets set to duel with Felix Hernandez. In another great match-up worth perusing the betting lines for, check out the first game of the series between the Texas Rangers and the upstart Toronto Blue Jays, as Japanese sensation Yu Darvish tries for his 4th straight win as a new MLB starting pitcher. He’ll get a strong challenge on the road from Toronto’s Kyle Drabek, who has started the season impressively by allowing just 6 runs in 4 starts (2-1). Catch other great American League match-ups as the New York Yankees battle the fast starting Baltimore Orioles, the Boston Red Sox take on the Oakland Athletics, and the two cellar dwellers, the Los Angeles Angels and Minnesota Twins, get set to do battle in Anaheim for a 3-game set. Closing out a look at the best MLB games for betting on sports today, check out the 4th and final meeting between the Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies, which has been a great series as the teams have traded wins back and forth, look out for the surging Atlanta Braves to remain hot at home behind Matt Minor as they look to complete a 4-game home sweep of the visiting Pittsburgh Pirates, and count in an exciting series opening up between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Colorado Rockies to be a great match-up tonight at Coors Field in Denver, CO. With great action for online sports betting all around on Monday, head down to the top sports betting site at Oddsmaker today and pick out your winners for hopefully a great start to a great new week!

NBA Playoffs Game 1: Boston Celtics vs. Atlanta Hawks

Two of the NBA’s top defensive teams get set to square off in a very well-balanced match-up for the Eastern Conference Playoffs first round action, as the #4 seed Boston Celtics travel to face the #5 seed Atlanta Hawks for Game 1 of a 7-game series. Catch tip-off at 7:00 PM ET, from the Philips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia, in what should make for a fantastic opening NBA playoffs game to watch and to wager on at one of the best online sportsbooks reviewed here.

Atlanta was able to earn home court advantage for this playoff series despite the Boston Celtics winning the Atlantic division by virtue of their better record during the 66-game, lockout shortened season. Closing out the season on high form, with 5 victories in their last 6 games, Atlanta has turned into somewhat of an offensive juggernaut down the stretch behind power forward Josh Smith and shooting guard Joe Johnson, with the team averaging 108.1 points in the final 6 contests on the regular season. While the status of big-man center Al Horford remains in doubt, the Hawks can take comfort in the fact that they won’t necessarily be disadvantaged in the front court, as Boston ranked dead last in the league with just 38.8 rebounds per game. Atlanta hasn’t been great in the paint this year themselves, averaging just 41.8 boards/contest (23rd in the NBA), and a key factor for them is how they react without Horford, and without Zaza Pachulia, who is also likely to miss this opening series with a foot injury. Bench players Ivan Johnson and 7-footer Jason Collins simply have to step up, especially as one of the league’s most veteran inside guys, Kevin Garnett, is well-accustomed to playing playoff basketball, and will be a key factor for the Boston Celtics on the opposing end.

Though depth may be a concern down in the paint for Atlanta, at least their outside shooting presence has them set to be tough contenders against one of the top defenses in the NBA. With Boston’s Ray Allen looking to be 50-50 for the series start (sitting out the last two weeks and taking a cortisone shot to play in this series), Atlanta can seek to have an advantage shooting the ball from the outside, with Joe Johnson on fire coming into the playoffs shooting %57 from 3-point range in the final 5 games of the regular season. Marvin Williams could also play a huge role in this series, perhaps making the starting 5 for tonight’s game if Atlanta chooses to run with a fast, smaller offense from the get-go. Also extremely important for the Hawks on defense is how Jeff Teague is able to limit or contain Rajon Rondo, the NBA’s top assists guy on the season. Rondo torched Atlanta for 20 assists in their April 11th meeting, but has only played 25 minutes of ball in the season’s final 4 games to rest his back (including missing the 97-92 loss to the Hawks, which gave Atlanta home-court advantage in this series). Atlanta will simply have to do a better job limiting Rondo’s ability to find open men near the bucket, mainly Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Brandon Bass, as if they let him run the Boston offense like he’s capable of doing, the Hawks will have a frustrating time trying to be everywhere at once on defense. Jeff Teague, this is your series to shine. Shutdown Rondo and the Hawks will have a big advantage in the series. Leave him to distribute the ball and create open space, and you’re gonna have a bad time.

For Boston on the other hand, the aging Big Three is a huge focal point for Celtics fans, as it’s unclear how effective Ray Allen will be (a crucial part of the Celtics game, especially from 3-point range), and it’s also unclear how Boston’s stamina will hold up after the end of what has been a particularly grueling lockout-shortened NBA regular season. Few would doubt that Kevin Garnett will be the focal point of the Boston attack inside the paint, and he must play well on both sides of the ball for the Celtics to have success. A scrappy opponent that loves to talk-the-talk, Garnett could find himself poised for a big series as Atlanta is without its two top centers, and will have to resort to bench players to defend one of the NBA’s all-time greats. Also in focus is Paul Pierce, who was rested in the final few games of the season due to a toe injury, and is undoubtedly one of the key floor generals for Boston coming into this series. While Rajon Rondo is the distributor, Paul Pierce is the playmaker, and has to come out with a good night on both sides of the ball against Atlanta. He continues to be the top-shooter for the Celtics, hitting 49.7 percent of his shots (a career high), and with Boston struggling this season to produce lots of offense, his contributions have to be felt from the get-go. In what could be the final stand for Boston’s Big Three, as Garnett is set for free-agency, Pierce again will be the go-to guy, and has to lead Boston’s scoring attack in this series. Also a big focal point will be the additions of Avery Bradley, who should step up into Ray Allen’s shoes, and Brandon Bass, who is charged with holding down the middle for Boston alongside Garnett. These two younger players may be huge difference makers, especially if injuries creep up amongst the ranks of the Boston stars. Getting support from both of them will be valuable, especially considering how deep the Atlanta Hawks are despite missing a pair of centers.

Betting lines for Boston Celtics vs. Atlanta Hawks at Intertops Sportsbook

The opening game of this series shows only the slightest edge for Atlanta at home, with the city generally being home to transplants and typically having a very strong Celtics support group amongst it. Atlanta walks in as a -120 favorite to win, with Boston just a slight underdog at +100 odds to win.

Against the spread, the betting lines are again tight, with the Hawks a -1.5 point favorite at -110 odds. Boston gets just 1.5 points to play with as underdogs at +110 odds, so if you’re looking to back Boston in Game 1, you’re better off taking the better odds on the money line taking the Celtics to win straight up.

For a battle between two of the league’s Top-5 defenses, the over/under on total points is set low as expected, with 179.5 points the line drawn in the sand. This will be an intriguing betting line, especially considering Atlanta’s torrid offensive form coming into the playoffs, and it will be interesting to see if Boston can properly limit the outside shooting attack that the Hawks have relied on to average nearly 110 points per game during the final two weeks of the regular season. Boston on the other hand has to find ways to generate scoring themselves, ranking near the bottom of the league with just under 92 points per game. In three games this season, under bettors won out twice, with two games producing just 174 and 155 points respectively. As such, expectations should be tempered that Atlanta, despite scoring in droves down the home stretch, will be able to score quick points in transition against Boston, in a game where the Celtics will be fully rested and ready to play defense.

It’s a great match-up for one of the first games in the NBA playoffs this postseason, so make sure to head down to Intertops Sportsbook, one of the best online sportsbooks reviewed here, and plant a wager or two on what should be the first of a very exciting string of games in this 7-game opening series.

Weekend Sportsbook Betting Wrap-up: NHL, NBA playoffs, MLB games and more!

Even though the waning moments of the weekend always have us groaning amidst the prospects of a return to the regular daily grind, Sunday’s top action for online sports betting should do well to give us all an exciting lift, as the NBA playoffs continue its run of postseason-opening games, the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs further break ground into the Conference semifinals, and as usual Major League Baseball offers a smattering of great match-ups to close out weekend series across the U.S. today. With such a wealth of great options for betting on sports at one of the best online sportsbooks reviewed here, we’ll start with a look at the best wagers available at Intertops Sportsbook. A tried and tested website we’ve been using for going on 5 years now, Intertops always has the largest offering of betting options each and every day, whether it be the more traditional sports wagers, or radically off-the-wall betting lines on anything from American Idol to the U.S. presidential race. A clean, easy-to-use website, count on Intertops as a great place to work in your bets on Sunday for all the top betting action in store for you.

Starting off with playoff action this Sunday, turn your attention first to the 4 playoff games lined up in the NBA this afternoon and evening, as a number of teams get set for Game 1 in the first round of playoff competition. One of the series we’re most excited with is the Memphis Grizzlies vs. Los Angeles Clippers showdown, as Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and company forge ahead into uncharted playoff territory after a terrific season run for the rebuilt ‘Lob City’. Memphis will get home court advantage for the first two games of this series however, where they have been dominant all season long (26-7) via the inside threats of Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, and the outside shooting abilities of Rudy Gay, Mike Conley and O.J. Mayo. This first game is pivotal, and should be a close, exciting option for online sportsbook betting today. Next up, find an interesting match-up between the Denver Nuggets, a score-first, worry-about-the-defense-later club, and the Los Angeles Lakers, a team that while having won the Pacific division, still has shown struggles with their play away from home, and their lack of depth. At home however, the Lakers have shown little cause for concern, playing excellent defense while dominating inside the paint with Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum, and of course having the veteran skill of the NBA’s second best scorer in Kobe Bryant. Denver on the other hand will have to rely on speed and transition offense, as their smaller than the Lakers, and lack a dominant inside presence. Key for them will be getting good, consistent efforts out of Ty Lawson, Danilo Gallinari and Arron Afflalo, and being able to rotate in their centers including Timofey Mozgov, Kosta Koufos and JaVale McGee.

For the remaining two NBA playoff series getting underway today, the San Antonio Spurs should be the team most likely to move past the first round with ease, as they have home court advantage and a great match-up with the Utah Jazz in the first round. While Utah showed a positive surge towards the end of the regular season, San Antonio has continued to be the most consistent, most veteran team heading into the playoffs, and looks the most likely to complete a sweep out of any of the match-ups taking place. The Spurs are an enormous favorite tonight at home, having for once a healthy starting line-up, but don’t count out the underdog Jazz to come out with a good Game 1 effort and at least make a run for covering the 11-point spread at Intertops Sportsbook. Lastly for NBA hoops fans today, make sure to dial in your bets for what should be a defense-first contest between the Boston Celtics and the Atlanta Hawks, as the two Eastern Conference sides battle in out at Philips Arena in Atlanta tonight. Again, this should be a critical Game 1 for both teams, and expect the battle to be won in the paint as rebounding will be crucial, as will the performance of Boston’s Kevin Garnett and Brandon Bass, and Atlanta’s Josh Smith and Joe Johnson.

Switching over to the exciting games taking place on-ice for the NHL’s Stanley Cup playoffs, Game 1 in the Eastern Conference semifinals between the New Jersey Devils and the Philadelphia Flyers should be a fantastic game to watch and wager on, as two very different playing styles collide tonight. The Flyers, who set a playoff record in the series with the Pittsburgh Penguins for most goals in a series through 4 games, and produced a whopping 12 power play goals on an unheard of %52 conversion rate, definitely have an upper hand coming into tonight’s opener. New Jersey though is rallying off a confidence-inspiring defeat of the Florida Panthers, where their defense and late-game poise helped them to push through a tough 7-game series in the first round. While I like the Devils’ budding consistency and their veteran netminder, look out for Philadelphia to be overpowering on offense in Game 1, and be the favorites to start out with a win in this series. In the second game of the day for the NHL playoffs, turn to the very well-balanced match-up between the Nashville Predators and Phoenix Coyotes, in what is sure to be another exciting game like the 4-3 overtime win for Phoenix was on Friday night.

Rounding out the day for online sports betting at Intertops Sportsbook, turn to the 15 games scheduled for Major League Baseball, as a number of weekend series wrap up, and a number of good looking options come across the betting lines throughout the day. Top match-ups include a fun battle between the Detroit Tigers and the New York Yankees as Detroit’s Max Scherzer takes on New York’s C.C. Sabathia, the pair of Sox, Boston and Chicago, duel it out in the final game of their 4-game series, and two of the top NL teams, the Washington Nationals and the Los Angeles Dodgers, get set for the final game of their 3-game stand, with the Dodgers seeking a sweep at home. Catch other great showdowns as the Tampa Bay Rays wrap up with the Texas Rangers, the St. Louis Cardinals try to sweep the Milwaukee Brewers out of town, and a great pitching duel gets set for Game 3 of the series between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Miami Marlins (Wade Miley vs. Josh Johnson). Make sure to peruse all your options for betting on Major League Baseball today, along with great choices for the NBA and NHL playoffs, and cap off the weekend with hopefully some added cash in your sportsbook betting account at Intertops!

Remember also, you can stay up to date on all the news, and get exclusive sportsbook bonus offers, by signing up for our sports betting newsletter. Until tomorrow, enjoy a fantastic day of sports, and have a great rest of the weekend!

Western Conference Semifinals Kick-off with Nashville Predators at Phoenix Coyotes

There’s no break in the action for the Stanley Cup Playoffs this week, as the excitement continues on Friday with Game 1 of the Western Conference Semifinals between the Nashville Predators and the Phoenix Coyotes, with face-off set for 9:00 PM ET from the Jobing.com Arena in Glendale, Arizona.

This could in fact be the most well-balanced match-up on paper of this year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Nashville Predators, known for their outstanding defense, top-rated power play and All-Star quality goalie Pekka Rinne, utilized a very deep roster that wears teams down with a fast-paced, hard hitting style of hockey. Phoenix, well, they pretty much like to do the same thing. The Coyotes have found a savior in between the pipes after last season’s departure of Ilya Bryzgalov, establishing Mike Smith as the go-to netminder, behind one of the league’s best defenses and a great penalty kill. There’s few superstars in the offensive game, as just three players had north of 20 goals on the season (Ray Whitney, Radim Vrbata and veteran captain Shane Doan), but regardless of the ‘Yotes low offensive output, they’ve been able to frustrate teams with great play in their own zone, and a host of talented players that have the ability to step up big on any given night. Nashville certainly plays the same type of game on offense, with only Mike Fisher and Patric Hornqvist scoring more than twenty goals and no one having more than 58 points, but the depth of the Preds has really carried the team, and has kept them in the top-10 in team scoring in the NHL.

One very big area to hone in on for this series is the power play. The Nashville Predators own the league’s best percentage with the man advantage (21.6 percent conversion), while Phoenix has really struggled at 5-4 hockey, ranking 29th in the league at only 13.5 percent. Without major improvement in that area, Phoenix is going to have a hard time keeping pace with the Predators, who all but dominated the Detroit Red Wings in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. It is interesting to note though the Nashville was only able to cash in on the power play twice against Detroit, while Phoenix found 5-4 paydirt with Antoine Vermette 3 times, capitalizing a total of 4 times against Chicago. If Phoenix can prevent Nashville from finding a groove with their own power play, and keep the goals about even with the man advantage, this series becomes just that much more difficult to call as it wears on with more games.

Another very major factor for this series is the fact that Phoenix is simply in uncharted territory. This is the first appearance for the team in the second round since 1987, when they were still the Winnipeg Jets. Nashville on the other hand comes off a great postseason run last year, where they reached the second round for the first time in their team’s short history, falling just shy of a conference finals appearance. Though there’s no question that Phoenix will have plenty of confidence after knocking the Chicago Blackhawks out in six games, there should be expectations that nerves will be a factor for the Coyotes at home in front of a rabid fan base that will be begging for victory. The pressure is most certainly on the home team during the opening games of a playoff series, so watch out for the ‘Yotes to be potentially a little tentative to start the first game.

Though focus will be on some of the shortcomings of each team heading into this series, what is truly worth highlighting is just how good both goalies have been, with Mike Smith holding a .950 save percentage in the first round against Chicago, and Pekka Rinne shutting down the Detroit Red Wings with a .944 save percentage as the Preds took the Wings in just 5 games. Interestingly enough, Mike Smith did not fair well against Nashville in his lone game against them, a 5-4 loss in a shootout back in March. Backup goalie Jason LaBarbera went 2-1 in 3 starts this season against Nashville, so it will be interesting to see how long a leash Phoenix coach Dave Tippett keeps with Mike Smith before turning to LaBarbera. However, this is a much different Mike Smith than anyone saw in the regular season, and any prior records between these two teams (2-2 season series split) can all but be thrown out the window. That said, both teams should have a big priority on giving their goalies more support, as a team simply can’t expect their goalie to come up with near shutout performances night-in and night-out in the playoffs.

Betting Lines for Phoenix Coyotes vs. Nashville Predators at Betonline Sportsbook

For the opening game of the Western Conference Semifinals, as expected the betting lines are as tight as can be for a match-up between the two most well-matched opponents thus far in the playoffs. Both teams pull down -105 odds to win straight up, however we’d have to give Nashville a slight edge as they won’t have the pressure of playing at home in their minds, and will have the advantage of being in this situation just one year prior.

Against the spread, the odds are huge with expectations of a low-scoring, tight game, with Nashville getting -1.5 goals to cover at +285 odds, and the Coyotes set with +1.5 goals to play with at -340 odds. Again, if one team is going to break out against the spread, chances are it’s going to be Nashville, with a more consistent goalie historically, a much better power play, and a lower level of nerves heading into Game 1.

Lastly for the over/under on total goals, 5 is the mark to stay under or push past, and is a reflection of the quality of defenses on ice for this series. As first-game jitters play out and both Pekka Rinne and Mike Smith set out determined to stop everything coming their way, goals are going to be at a premium, hence the -150 odds going under, with +136 odds going over.

Expect a fantastic showdown in an exciting atmosphere for Game 1 of the first Western Conference Semifinal series, and make sure to look over all the available options for online sports betting, as this won’t be a game you’ll want to miss!

Light Day for Online Sportsbook Betting, NBA, NHL Playoff Action Ahead

With the wrap-up of the NBA regular season, and the closure of the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, Friday’s options for online sports betting may look a little light, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some great up and coming options for betting on sports today and tomorrow that should catch your attention at one of the top online sports betting sites reviewed here. Starting off with a look at the bulk of the action available today, Major League Baseball catches our attention first and foremost, as the weekend series begin play today with 15 games scheduled around the league. Great new series to start off with include the Detroit Tigers heading into a battle with the New York Yankees as Detroit’s Cy Young award winner Justin Verlander looks to snap the consecutive winning streak of New York’s Ivan Nova, the Tampa Bay Rays taking on the Texas Rangers for a great showdown between two of the American League’s top teams, and in the National League a great pairing between two surprisingly hot-starting clubs, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Washington Nationals. Add in good series between the Milwaukee Brewers and St. Louis Cardinals, as well as the Seattle Mariners vs. Toronto Blue Jays, and the baseball options for online sportsbook betting definitely will be the highlight of the day. For all the best MLB bets on Friday, turn to our featured sportsbook of the day at Bovada Sportsbook, one of the best reviewed sportsbooks we’ve added to our sports betting ranks over the past year.

Although the Stanley Cup Playoffs in NHL Hockey has just concluded the first round of action in the Conference quarterfinals, there’s no let-up in the action on ice today, as the Western Conference Semifinals get underway right now with Game 1 set between the Nashville Predators and the Phoenix Coyotes. This series undoubtedly will feature a defense-first approach to the first meeting, as the two teams feel each other out and likely play conservatively tonight. With Phoenix getting home-ice advantage for the first couple of games in this exciting series, expect a sea of white to great the Predators, as the Phoenix fans finally have a team capable of making a deep run behind goalie Mike Smith and leaders Keith Yandle, Radim Vrbata and Shane Doan. In opposition though, the ‘Yotes will have to figure out a way to solve the 6’4″ Pekka Rinne in net, who’s been borderline unstoppable this season and into the playoffs, frustrating the Detroit Red Wings into submission in the first round. Backed up by a great defense led by Shea Weber, Kevin Klein and Roman Josi, and featuring the league’s top-ranked power play, Nashville doesn’t necessarily have the biggest stars on ice, but rather relies on it’s very deep roster to find different players stepping up night after night. This is one fantastic series between two very well-balanced teams, so make sure to check out your options for NHL sportsbook betting today, as you won’t want to miss out on the kick-off of the Semifinal round of conference playoff action tonight.

With the NBA season all wrapped up after an exciting 66-game run this year, we’ll take a break for just one day before the start of the 2012 NBA Playoffs, which undoubtedly should make for some very exciting options for sportsbook betting to come. Getting out of the gates first will be an opening series between the continually impressive Indiana Pacers and the Orlando Magic, a team trying to rally without a number of their key players in postseason action. With Indiana getting home court advantage, and not having to deal with Orlando’s Dwight Howard, the NBA’s reigning defensive player of the year, the Pacers should have a solid leg up on the Magic on paper, but once the first tip-off begins we’re betting on this series being and extremely hard-fought showdown. Orlando still has it’s outstanding outside shooting game courtesy of J.J. Redick, Jameer Nelson and Ryan Anderson, who will make plenty of trouble for Indiana’s top players including Danny Granger, Roy Hibbert and David West. One big factor however could be the depth of both teams, which favors the Pacers, as Hedo Turkoglu and Dwight Howards’ absences from the playoffs will put lots of added pressure on Glen Davis, and bench players Earl Clark and Daniel Orton. Anything can happen come playoff time though, and this exciting series should be tops on your list for NBA playoff betting at one of the top sportsbooks reviewed here.

NBA Regular Season Wrap-Up: Dallas Mavericks vs. Atlanta Hawks

On the closing day of the NBA season, one great match-up stands out with playoff implications, as the Dallas Mavericks (36-29, 13-19 away) get set for a showdown with the Atlanta Hawks (39-26, 22-10 home) at the Philips Arena in Atlanta, GA, with tip-off taking place at 8:00 PM ET.

While the Atlanta Hawks have wrapped up their playoff positioning in the Eastern Conference with the 5th seed, there is still the matter of home court advantage on the line, as they sit 1 game ahead of the Boston Celtics despite being the 5th seed to Boston’s 4th (as Boston holds the Atlantic division title). A victory tonight for Atlanta means they’ll be able to sit on home court advantage for the first round of the playoffs, which would be huge against the Boston Celtics, who have not played their best ball away from the TD Garden this season. As such, Atlanta will seek to continue their strong form through the end of the season, winning 7 of their last 10 games coming into tonight’s match-up with the Mavericks, and have won 4 of their last 5 games with the most recent coming on Tuesday against the Los Angeles Clippers. Joe Johnson continues to be a key factor in games down the stretch, averaging 22 points per contest (18.8 points/game this season overall), and comes off a great 28 point effort on 10-for-17 shooting from the floor and 6-for-9 from 3-point range. He’ll need to be on target once again tonight to overcome the Mavs, who have dropped Atlanta in 3 straight meetings, and have owned the Hawks historically by winning 19 of the past 25 games. A big test for Atlanta will come with their inside play tonight, especially with both centers Al Horford (out since January) and Zaza Pachulia out at least through the first round of the playoffs. Therefore a big focus will be getting step-up play from back-up forwards Ivan Johnson and Jason Collins, who will fill in with added minutes tonight, and into the playoffs. Atlanta has been getting good play from its bench in general, indicated by recent wins, and in order for them to overcome a team that has had the better of them in recent years, a well-rounded team effort will be critical.

For Dallas, winning on the road has been a struggle all season long, as the former NBA champions have not had the punch of a deep line-up such as they’ve been accustomed to having in the past. However, Dallas comes in very well rested having not played since Saturday’s loss at Chicago, where both Jason Terry and Jason Kidd sat out. The big question tonight is whether or not Dallas cares if they are the 6th or 7th seed in the Western Conference playoff picture. Both match-ups against the Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Lakers seem daunting, especially with those two teams owning homecourt advantage, however it would seem to benefit the Mavericks to take on the Lakers, the team they swept out of the playoffs last season, and therefore we should expect a solid performance will head coach Rick Carlisle playing all his starters. For tonight’s game against an understaffed Atlanta squad, Dallas has to keep the points production to a minimum on defense, utilizing their size in the paint as the main advantage. Dallas rebounds very well also (42.8 boards/game, which could be a major factor in tonight’s game, so don’t be surprised to see a lot of big depth get into the action as Brandon Haywood and Ian Mahinmi log more minutes at the center position. Also expect Dirk Nowitzki to continue his hot shooting ways, averaging 26.4 points/game in the last five contests, and being well rested after getting limited minutes in the last two games. A big step-up tonight could come via Shawn Marion, who has just 2 double-digit scoring efforts in the past week and a half on limited minutes. His presence has to be felt tonight if Dallas is to avoid ending the season on a sour note on the road against a hungry, though wounded, Atlanta Hawks side.

Betting Lines for Dallas Mavericks vs. Atlanta Hawks at TopBet Sportsbook

The Dallas Mavericks could be a great pick tonight on the money line, considering their status as a +180 underdog while the Atlanta Hawks remaining understaffed in the middle due to injury. However, the bookmakers have turned to Atlanta’s recent form, which has been solid even without some key players, and have brushed aside historical records in this series to favor the Hawks at -220 odds straight up. With this game critical for both teams to win, it will end up coming down to which side can execute on offense and frustrate on defense, with Dallas getting a slight edge in our opinion by virtue of their stronger presence in the paint and more rest under their feet.

Against the spread, Dallas is a +5.5 underdog at TopBet Sportsbook, while Atlanta will have to cover 5.5 points at -110 odds as the favorite at home. Since Atlanta has certainly played well at the Philips Arena this season, and Dallas has struggled at times to find their groove away from home, a great shooting night from the Hawks’ supporting cast could indeed find them pushing past the spread. Both teams sit even at 16-16 on the year ATS coming into this match-up, so this betting line could be the toughest to pinpoint tonight.

For the over/under on tonight’s final showdown of the season, 194 points is the line drawn in the sand. Atlanta is the 5th best scoring defense in the NBA, and Dallas is the 11th best (93.2 vs. 94.7), and the line is an additional 6 points over the season defensive averages for both teams. Atlanta’s game plan will revolve around limiting the Dallas offense from moving quickly in transition, and Dallas will try to own the battle in the paint, to avoid giving Atlanta second chances. With both these scenarios likely to play out, expect a low-scoring game with an added emphasis on good fundamental defense.

It’s a great way to close out the 2012 NBA campaign, so check out all the betting options for tonight’s clash between playoff-bound teams, and put down your best wager on what should be an exciting showdown between the Hawks and Mavericks tonight.

NBA Regular Season Finale, NHL Playoffs Game 7s, MLB Options at TopBet

Thursday brings another multitude of online sports betting options to the table, but with some added excitement as the NBA Basketball campaign finishes off the final games of the regular season before the start of the playoffs, and Stanley Cup Playoff Game 7s get underway for the conclusion of what has been one of the most captivating and intense first rounds of NHL playoff hockey we’ve seen in years. Add in a host of options for Major League Baseball, as 8 games get underway for the lull between midweek and weekend series, and you’ve got some great options for betting on sports at one of the best online sportsbooks reviewed here. For today’s venture into the top sports betting choices, we’re headed back to TopBet Sportsbook, a frequent destination for quick wagers on any and all of the days’ sports betting action. Take a trip with us today to TopBet, where you’ll find a quick-loading website, competitive betting lines, and one of the easiest-to-use sports betting interfaces we’ve ever tested out.

Starting things off with a look at the last dose of NBA games for regular season play, 13 contests get set for tip-off this evening, with a few interesting match-ups that will have some effect on playoff standings. First, the Philadelphia 76ers finish the regular season on the road against the Detroit Pistons, deadlocked with the New York Knicks in the Eastern Conference playoff race. The Knicks own the tie-breaker with Philly, so a win would be essential to moving up in the standings, even though the possibility of facing the Miami Heat in the first round (vs. the 1st place Chicago Bulls) doesn’t sound all too appealing. As the Knicks also have a favorable match-up against the Charlotte Bobcats tonight, but also are playing on the road, there should be a high probability that one of these teams gets handed an upset loss, as both Detroit and Charlotte will be trying to end the season on a good note in front of their home fans. Considering how awful the Bobcats have been however (looking at their 23rd straight loss, and the worst record in NBA history), A good upset pick might be to side with the Detroit Pistons, or at least take a look at Detroit’s options for covering the spread as underdogs.

The other race in the Western Conference will also hold make some of the final games between West teams very intriguing tonight, as Denver, Dallas and Utah are all separated by just two games, with a number of scenarios able to change the seeding by the end of the night. the Denver Nuggets, currently in 6th position, will have a good chance at success on the road against the continually fading Minnesota Timberwolves, who have dropped 9 of their last 10 as their season wraps up in woeful fashion. The Dallas Mavericks have perhaps the toughest final match-up of the bunch, having to take on Atlanta on the road, but with the Hawks secure in 5th spot in the East, expect the Mavs to put all their assets forward as they’ll have potential to move up one position by virtue of their tie-breaker advantage over the Nuggets. Lastly, the Utah Jazz wrap up where they play their best ball, on home court against a struggling Portland team that is already entrenched in rebuild mode for next year. Having lost 6 straight, the Trail Blazers should have difficulties keeping up with the Jazz’ fast-paced offense, but since Dallas owns the tie-breaker over them, Utah may choose to simply rest up tonight and avoid putting more strain on their starting players.

Moving over to action in the Stanley Cup Finals today, two Game 7’s will make for some exciting wagering options, as the New York Rangers and Ottawa Senators get set for a do-or-die scenario, as do the New Jersey Devils and the Florida Panthers, two teams deadlocked after a series that has seen the scrappy Devils continue to avoid elimination game after game. With the Rangers on home ice behind their All-Star goalie Henrik Lundqvist and a high-powered offense, the pressure will be on the top team from the Eastern Conference, giving a slight advantage to the Senators, who no one truly expected to put up such a great fight in this series. Ottawa netminder Craig Anderson has been a beast for the Sens in goal, and another stand-up performance will be just what is needed especially as the Rangers will look to through everything on net tonight. For the Florida vs. New Jersey game, I can’t help but side with the more veteran New Jersey Devils, who have momentum in their favor and confidence rolling into the showdown in South Florida. Expect another tight finish, and a great option for betting on sports today.

Wrapping up the online sportsbook betting options at TopBet, turn to the Major League Baseball calendar, which features a number of series wrapping up this afternoon and evening. Key games to watch for include the start of the 4-game series between the Chicago White Sox and the Boston Red Sox, as Boston continues to try and dig out of an awful start to the season once more, and Chicago turns back to recent perfect game pitcher Philip Humber to start the series off on the right foot. In Detroit today, the Seattle Mariners wrap up their 3-game series with the Tigers, looking for a surprising sweep after the Mariners bats have come alive and have been back by solid pitching. Look also to good match-ups between the Miami Marlins and the New York Mets, the Tampa Bay Rays and Los Angeles Angels and the San Francisco Giants and Cincinnati Reds to all be excellent choices for online sports betting on Thursday, as each of these closing match-ups to midweek series should have an added boost with great pitching and teams needing a win in the final games before new series start for the weekend.

With a great Thursday of action, and more great options for online sports betting over the weekend, stay up to date on all the news and for exclusive sportsbook bonus offers, by signing up for our sports betting newsletter. Until tomorrow, best of luck in your sports betting endeavors, and we hope to catch you again on our site soon!

NHL Playoffs Game 7: Boston Bruins vs. Washington Capitals

In the final game of what has been a truly fantastic Eastern Conference Quarterfinal playoff series, the Boston Bruins get back to home ice looking to close out against the Washington Capitals tonight, with face-off set for 7:30 PM ET at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

There is something to be said for just how close this 7-game series has been so far, as the Capitals and Bruins have played each of the six games so far to within one goal every night, a new NHL record. Add in the fact that there have been 3 overtime games, including one in Game 6 where Boston prevailed 4-3 while on the cusp of elimination in Washington, and Game 7 will undoubtedly once again see everything put on the line for these two well-rounded hockey squads tonight. In a series running high on emotion, but also on disciplined play and teams’ ability to win on the road (both sides have won twice away from home thus far), it will all boil down to which team can keep their composure through 60 minutes (or more perhaps, if needed), and which side can avoid letting the playoff atmosphere in Boston get the better of them. If one thing is for certain, the match-up in goal between Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins and Braden Holtby of the Washington Capitals is set to be a good one. Each goalie sports a goals against average of within 1/100 of a point (2.17 for Holtby, 2.18 for Thomas), each has a 3-3 record, and their save percentages are %.935 and %.922, with Boston generating more shots but both sides having exactly the same amount of goals scored. There is no doubt that both netminders will be standing on their heads in the final showdown, so we’ll look to other key factors of the game to find (hopefully) a few wagering advantages for online sportsbook betting at one of the top reviewed sportsbooks.

For Boston, generating production on their power play has been a consistent issue come playoff time, and against Washington they haven’t had too much success once again, scoring just twice with the man advantage in 20 attempts. Boston has been taking plenty of shots on net, averaging 36 shots per game over the past 6 contests, but making them more effective by getting the puck at the net and leveraging their big bodies like Zdeno Chara and Milan Lucic has to happen. Getting Patrice Bergeron rested and back into the full swing of things will be a boost, as although he contributed one assist in Game 6, the league’s second-best face-off man has been hampered with an undisclosed injury since the middle of Game 5. Face-offs matter most come this time of year, and Boston has to have Bergeron in top form, especially when the B’s are playing in the Capitals zone. Also important is getting bigger contributions from the Boston stars, as Rich Peverley has carried the team with 3 goals in the last 4 games and has racked up a team-leading 5 points in this series. Tyler Seguin could again be a difference maker as he was in overtime for Game 6 scoring the winning goal, as he’s produced the most shots on goal (24) for Boston, but has just 1 goal and 1 assist to show for it. Boston’s defenders as well take plenty of shots on net, with Chara producing just 1 goal on 18 shots and Andrew Ference also with 1 on 17 shots, so getting a higher level of production from the blue line will have an impact on tonight’s outcome.

Over on the Washington side, we’ve heard rumblings about star player Alex Ovechkin being upset with his lower amounts of ice time in this series (20:12 minutes per game), but that shouldn’t be an issue at Boston this evening, as the Caps will look to press all their firepower forward against the NHL playoff’s stingiest goaltender. Ovechkins will once again lead the team with shots on goal, as any teams’ star player should, but look for goals for Washington to perhaps come from less conventional sources, as the Bruins will seek to shadow Ovechkin, and Alexander Semin this evening. Nicklas Backstrom hasn’t produced a goal in the past 3 games despite contributing 3 assists during that spell, and could be a difference maker with a lot of attention set on the Alex’s. If he can avoid getting into the penalty box (leads both teams by far with 16 penalty minutes in this series), and continue to be a discouraging factor for the Boston defense, Washington will have a solid advantage in the offensive zone against a very good, and very big Boston blue line. Other key players for the Caps include Roman Hamrlik, who is +5 on the series with 3 assists and leads Washington’s defensemen in points, and defenseman Mike Green, who is also +5 and has been stepping up in this series after a quiet regular season. The Caps need everybody look for the best shooting opportunities, and also looking to play stand-up defense once again especially on the power play, and with the pressure of having a home crowd off their shoulders, this could be the time for the Caps to shake their playoff woes and push through a tough competitor into the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

Betting Lines for the Boston Bruins vs. Washington Capitals at the Sportsbetting Sportsbook.

Checking out the top wagering options for this Game 7 showdown, the Boston Bruins take the money line and favorite on straight up bets, getting -180 odds to win at home. With Washington already having won twice at the TD Garden in this series, and having a healthy line-up backed by a solid goalie in Braden Holtby, the underdog pick starts to look solid at +160 going for a Capitals victory.

Against the spread, Boston will need to cover 1.5 goals for sports fans to pick up on the +170 odds, and Washington will get a 1.5 goal cushion at -200 odds. With the series yet to see a game decided by more than just one goal, one can expect once again for the underdog pick to be the best wager here, especially with the success Washington has had on the road in this series. The only caveat may be that come desperation time in the final minutes, an empty net goal could be a consideration to take into account when wagering on the spread. That said, look also to a high probability that in a low-scoring, tight game, this could be decided in overtime, as it has in half of the games played thus far.

Lastly on the over/under for total goals, the mark is set at 5 goals tonight despite the total reaching 7 goals in the last two games. In fact, the total has gone to 7 in 3 of the 6 games of this series, although in the other 3 the total has been held under 3 goals. Expect the latter to be the case tonight, as defense is critical, power play goals will be tough to come by, and both goalies will be set on playing their best games of the season with everything on the line.

Expect a fantastic finale to what has been one of the most exciting Eastern Conference playoff series in recent memory, make sure to check over all your wagering options at the Sportsbetting Sportsbook, or any one of the best reviewed sportsbooks found on our website, and enjoy some outstanding hockey in a great Boston atmosphere tonight!

Midweek Sportsbook Betting Focuses on NBA Season Wrap Up, NHL, MLB Action

As the week quickly moves along, sports fans will witness the closure of the NBA regular season tomorrow, with just a handful of basketball games available for online sports betting over the next two days. While it’s exciting to shift gears once again into playoff mode, the hectic pace and intriguing betting strategies needed in this lockout-shortened season will be missed. That said, and without getting too sentimental about the loss of a constant flow of NBA games for betting on sports, we turn first and foremost today to wagers on NBA basketball at the top online sports betting site at Bookmaker Sportsbook. With 7 NBA games tonight, and a number of quality match-ups playing out as teams play their final home games and/or their last games of the regular season, this is a great starting point for sportsbook betting today. Featuring games between the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Clippers, the Chicago Bulls vs. Indiana Pacers as well as the Oklahoma City Thunder vs. the Denver Nuggets, a grip of playoff-bound teams duke it out tonight, which should make for some exciting wagers on the second to last day of the regular season. As the Clippers seek out home court advantage with a victory this evening, and the Knicks try to solidify their 7th position in the Eastern Conference as Philadelphia gives chase (they are also in action against Milwaukee tonight), look for this match-up to be the top billing in terms of importance, but also make sure to put stock into the Nuggets v. Thunder match-up, as Denver battles with Dallas for 6th seed in the Western Conference race (currently just a half-game up on the Mavericks).

Changing course for online sports betting, the next item of business on the docket is for a look into the wealth of games offered for Major League Baseball wagers today, as 16 games get set to get underway today and tonight with a double-header thrown in the mix. Key match-ups to look out for around the league include the Los Angeles Angels vs. Tampa Bay Rays, which features an exciting pitching duel between LA’s C.J. Wilson and Tampa’s Jeremy Hellickson, The Philadelphia Phillies vs. Arizona Diamondbacks with Cole Hamels against Trevor Cahill, and the Los Angeles Dodgers wrapping up their 3-game set with the Atlanta Braves as the hot-starting Ted Lilly squares off against the Braves Brandon Beachy. Teams on the upward trend today include the Washington Nationals, who look for 4 straight wins by putting top starter Jordan Zimmerman on the mound against the San Diego Padres, the Baltimore Orioles, who seek a 3rd win in a row by getting another outstanding pitching performance from Jason Hammel tonight against Toronto, and the Seattle Mariners, who face the Chicago White Sox yet again with Felix Hernandez set to make another appearance. Look across all your betting options for MLB baseball today, as with this many games available, there’s bound to be couple great wagers for you to get behind.

Wrapping up options for online sports betting today at Bookmaker Sportsbook, turn to the lone Game 7 in the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs, as the Boston Bruins and Washington Capitals get set for a do-or-die scenario at the TD Garden in Boston tonight. This has been a back-and-forth series from the get-go, and will without a doubt be an exciting conclusion to another one of the great playoff series we’ve witnessed in the first round of action this season. Expect tight defense to be the focus of both teams, and look for Boston’s Tim Thomas to be on point at home as the former Vezina Trophy winner puts everything on the line in net to stop the likes of Alex Ovechkin and Alexander Semin of the Caps. For you European Football fans out there, don’t miss out on a great second leg match-up between Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League Semifinals, as this will be Spain’s last stand in the tournament after Barcelona was unceremoniously and surprisingly knocked out of competition yesterday by Chelsea. With everything on the line for Cristiano Ronaldo and Real at home in front of the Bernabeu faithful, the intensity and importance of today’s game will certainly add some excitement to your sportsbook betting options on Wednesday. Stay tuned tomorrow for even more great sportsbook bets as the NBA regular season wraps up and two more NHL Playoff Game 7s conclude the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, and as always thanks for stopping by the CR website for sports news and reviews of the best online sportsbooks found anywhere.