Seven different teams have won the Stanley Cup in the nine years since the 2004-2005 NHL lockout. We’ll see two of those teams in action Wednesday night (8:00 PM ET, NBCSN) when the Chicago Blackhawks visit the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Blackhawks won in 2010 and 2013 to end nearly 50 years of frustration, and the Penguins claimed the Cup in 2009.
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Chicago (28-15-1-1 going into Tuesday’s action) happens to be this year’s Stanley Cup favourite at 11/2 in the NHL futures market. But despite owning one of the league’s best goal differentials at plus-0.67, the Hawks are in minus territory on the puck line at 16-29 ATS, causing 5.84 units in losses. Pittsburgh (26-12-3-3) is 10/1 to win the Cup and 3.14 units in the black at 19-25 ATS, with a goal differential of plus-0.55.
Neither of these two clubs is particularly hot right now. Chicago has dropped five of its last eight games, and Pittsburgh is 4-7 since left wing Blake Comeau (11 goals, nine assists) was put on injured reserve with a sprained wrist, followed quickly by right wing Patric Hornqvist (13 goals, 16 assists) and his ankle/foot. Meanwhile, defenseman Olli Maatta (shoulder) has been ruled out for the remainder of the 2014-2015 season.
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