Tonight, the San Jose Sharks defeated the Vancouver Canucks by a score of 5-2 in the third game of their first round series of the 2013 NHL playoffs. Though the Canucks came into the series seeded 3rd vs the 6th seed, they have been outplayed for most of the games, at times quite badly. It’s hard to believe that the Canucks were one win away from winning the Stanley Cup in June of 2011. The core of the team is essentially the same from that summer but they’ve been terrible in the playoffs since then. In fact, it seems like a switch was thrown in game seven of the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals where they failed to score even a single goal. Including that game, the Canucks have played 10 subsequent playoff games. They have only won one of those. Imagine getting to within one win of the Cup and then not being able to win playoff games after that.
It’s clear to me now that the Canucks’ miserable season will come to an end on Tuesday, where they will likely be the only team to be swept in four games in the first round. That will be a dubious distinction indeed. Prior to the start of the series, I had planned on betting $200 that the Sharks would take the series. A trusted friend of mine convinced me not to. I’m now kicking myself for not doing what I knew to be right in the first place. As a consolation though, I’m planning on betting on the game four on Tuesday. Betting on single games is way riskier though. Series bets have the advantage of averages. Averaged out over four games or more, the likelihood of the better team to win is much more predictable than the outcome of a single game. With the Sharks now up three games to none, what are the odds that the Sharks will win the series? Very high. What are the odds of the Sharks winning game four? Well, pretty high but not as high as the odds for winning the series (which is almost assured). So I’m going to take a chance and bet on the game four.
Now some people are going to wonder if I feel bad for betting against my home team. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, the Canucks have disappointed me all my life, I feel no shame in making some money off their misfortunes. Tuesday will be no different.