@FastMoneyLabs’ Bankroll Builder - 5/9

A wise man once said, “simple is better.” Yet we still tried to finesse yesterday’s article with 3 correlated picks. Not very simple. And not too wise.

A second, unrelated wise man once said, “If you’re going to make stupid bets. Do it on Sunday. Because regardless of result. A fresh start awaits Monday.”

Those guys might be onto something. Let’s listen. Here’s my best attempt at doing just that with a 2-leg bankroll builder paying just under 2-to-1 at time of writing.

Leg 1: Aleksander Barkov (FLA) over 2.5 Shots on Goal (-155) vs. WSH

We’ve seen this movie before. Team down 2-1 in the series. Backs against the wall. Season on the line. And what do they do? They come out firing with speed, energy and ruthless intention of putting pucks on net.

If I expect that storyline to repeat – which I do – then there’s no player I want to back more today than Panthers’ captain Aleksander Barkov to get 3+ shots on goal (SOG).

He’s averaging 3.7 SOG per game in the series and covered this 2.5 line in all 4 matchups vs. Washington this year (regular season + playoffs).

Last game, he attempted 9 shots, but only 4 hit the net (+1.5 vs. what we need today). Seeing those extra shot attempts gives me the warm and fuzzies, because they buy us cushion for missed and blocked shots.

Looking at career numbers, Barkov is 16-3 (84.2%) to the Over at this 2.5 line in 19 career playoff games:


To be clear, this bet won’t hit every time, but I see value at -155 odds given:

  • The situation. Backs against the wall.
  • Covered in 4/4 vs. Washington this year (average 4.0 per game).
  • Covered in 16/19 (84.2%) career playoff games.

It’s the perfect mix of stats and motivation to support this pick as Leg 1.

Leg 2: Valeri Nichushkin (COL) over 2.5 Shots on Goal (-140) vs. NSH

If we were still on a heater, we’d be backing Roman Josi over 3.5 Shots on Goal (+115) as Leg 2. He’s Nashville’s captain, and I like him to cover his SOG prop tonight for similar reasons as Barkov.

My strong lean aside – from a pure value perspective, I feel the best option for Leg 2 is a lesser-known player on Colorado who goes by the name of Valeri Nichushkin.

Nichushkin logs tons of minutes and gets the benefit of playing alongside superstars Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen on Colorado’s lethal 1st line. Opposing defenses are rightly focused on stopping MacKinnon and Rantanen. Which creates space and opportunity for Nichushkin to get shots on goal.

With that said, I’m puzzled at how books continue to list his shots on goal prop line at 2.5. He’s been hitting it like a mad man – covering in 10 straight games entering tonight (average 4.4 per game) and 22 of his last 30 (73.3%).

They say a picture is worth 1,000 words, and in Nichushkin’s case, I agree. See his trend visualized below, courtesy of Props.Cash:


Including regular season, Nichushkin has now covered this 2.5 SOG line in 6 of 7 (85.7%) matchups vs. Nashville this year (average 3.9 per game).

Like I said in the Barkov section – just because it’s been hitting does not mean it will cash every time. But for the -140 price… How could we not back Nichushkin for Leg 2?

I got +182 Odds for this 2-Leg parlay at DraftKings Sportsbook. I described it as a bankroll builder, but to be clear: parlays carry an extra element of risk. All it takes is an injury or off game to kill the bet. I like our chances at cashing the ticket, but please bet responsibly & best of luck!

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