Stanley Cup Playoffs Commence, NBA and MLB Wagers Top Sportsbook Options

As we move into the midway point of the week, exciting action for online sportsbook betting takes off at the best sports betting sites reviewed right here. With the start of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs getting underway, as well as a host of games for betting on sports featured across NBA Basketball and Major League Baseball, today is a perfect day for picking out your favorite sportsbook, dropping in a couple of good-looking wagers, and sitting back to wait for a great night of sports competition ahead. Moving through the list of the best online sportsbooks reviewed here, we’ll spot our wagers at the Oddsmaker Sportsbook, a sportsbook that we’ve personally been using for the past 5 years, and one that we can recommend without any hesitation. With great customer service on board and one of the easiest sports betting interfaces to operate, look no further than Oddsmaker for an easy-going experience that will have you logged in and wagering with just a few simple clicks of a button.

First up for top sportsbook bets today, dig in to the NHL Hockey action on tap as 3 series get underway with Game 1’s set for this evening. Starting off with a pair of games on the East Coast, first a pair of bitter rivals take to the ice in Pennsylvania, as the Pittsburgh Penguins get set to clash with the Philadelphia Flyers. There is certain to be no love lost between these two hockey clubs, who have already seen some spectacular brawls and incidents on the ice during the regular season, so you can surely expect an exciting, aggressive and competitive series between these two foes over the next week. At home Pittsburgh starts Game 1 as a -175 favorite to win at Oddsmaker, with a low 5.5 goals for the total points line, making an interesting wagering option for over total points pickers as this game should feature plenty of scoring if they regular season match-ups are any indication.

Next on tap for Stanley Cup action, find a tough showdown between the Detroit Red Wings and the Nashville Predators, with the Nashville having a huge advantage playing at home to start the series, avoiding an opening trip to Detroit, one of the toughest places in all the NHL to play. The Predators may make for an excellent ‘sleeper’ pick this year, with the league’s best power play, a solid defense in front of an outstanding goalie in Pekka Rinne, and a much more potent offense this season compared to last. Detroit, once again a contender for the Cup by virtue of their veteran core of players, should not be taken lightly either, especially on home ice where they went 31-7-3 this year. For tonight’s opener, Nashville gets a slight nod as favorite at home with -130 odds, and an even lower over/under set at 5.0 goals. With two great offenses and two great defenses on ice for this showdown, this may be one game to use in order to feel out the series as a whole, so remain slightly reserved for wagers between these two very evenly matched sides.

Lastly for Stanley Cup action tonight, the Vancouver Canucks get set to host the Los Angeles Kings for Game 1 of their 7-game series together. The President’s trophy-winning Canucks should be considered one of the favorites to reach the Cup Finals this year, behind a powerfully quick offense and a shutdown defense, however one thing to watch in this series for Vancouver will be the goalie situation, as Roberto Luongo has a long way to go to shake off the playoff monkey that has hounded him for the past few years (and most notably bit him repeatedly in embarrassing performances especially on the road vs. Boston in last year’s finals). Cory Schneider, who many fans are calling to start the playoffs, could be promoted to start on short notice, as Luongo most likely will be on a short leash. For this series however, with the Canucks holding a firepower advantage especially if they can get Daniel Sedin back to full strength after suffering a concussion, it’s possible that Vancouver won’t need to call into question their starting goalie, as the Kings have struggled this year on the power play, and rank near dead last in the league in goals scored per game. That said, if LA’s defense can shut down the Canucks attack, and the Kings goalie Jonathan Quick can muster a better playoff run than he’s had thus far in his career (just 4-8 with a 3.22 goals against average), this series will be a tight one that plays out in exciting fashion. For this first meeting though, Vancouver has the advantage on the betting lines, with -175 odds to win at home, while the Kings will make an interesting pick for underdog pickers at +155 odds. Anything can happen in the playoffs though, and if the Kings can steal one game away from the Canucks to start the series and find a hot streak with their talented but under-producing scoring lines, this showdown could as of yet produce the biggest upset in the Cup playoffs this year.

Moving into the next segment of sportsbook betting at Oddsmaker Sportsbook, look to the NBA Basketball picks on the docket for Wednesday, with a grip of 11 games coming online and ready for your perusal. A huge match-up in the Western Conference catches the eye as the Oklahoma City Thunder host the Los Angeles Clippers, with neither team fully secure in their playoff positions at this time. OKC as always will be a heavy favorite at home as they seek a 3rd straight win, but don’t count out the Clippers, who have been playing very well down the stretch, especially against the spread which stands at a lofty 8 points in favor of Kevin Durant and the Thunder. Other top NBA match-ups worthy of a deeper look include the Boston Celtics back at home hosting the Atlanta Hawks after a huge 115-107 victory in Miami last night, the Houston Rockets battling the Utah Jazz with just 2 1/2 games separating the 6th seed Rockets from the 10th in the West Jazz, and a classic showdown between the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Lakers, as the Spurs try to get back into form after finally getting beaten to snap a massive 11-game winning streak. With the NBA playoffs just around the corner, there’s no doubt that every contest on the hard court will be highly contested, especially with almost every playoff seed still up for grabs, so expect exciting betting options and great games ahead each night through the end of the regular season.

Rounding out the sports betting options on Wednesday, turn to the action in Major League Baseball, as the season gathers pace and starts to show which teams have the right formula to start off a new year. It’s the first day featuring a full plate of 15 games on tap, with series extending into the middle of the week with a number of quality pitching duels and a number of hot-starting teams to follow. Look for great match-ups like the St. Louis Cardinals vs. Cincinnati Reds as Jaime Garcia duels with Johnny Cueto, the New York Mets put up Johan Santana against Stephen Strasbourg and the Washington Nationals, Tampa Bay takes on Detroit with the best pitching match-up on the day featuring James Shields vs. AL Cy Young winner Justin Verlander, while Josh Johnson dukes it out with Roy Halladay as the Miami Marlins try to send the Philadelphia Phillies to a 1-4 start. It’s a fantastic time to be a sports fan, and an even better time to head on down to one of the best online sportsbooks reviewed here, such as the one at Oddsmaker Sportsbook, and find the best wagers with the best possible odds right now!

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