This year’s Stanley Cup playoffs have played out exactly how everyone assumed they would, with the Tampa Bay Lightning cruising to the finals after one of the most dominant regular seasons in NHL history and—
*holds finger up to nonexistent earpiece*
Oh. I see.
In reality, this year’s postseason has been an absolutely wild ride filled with unexpected twists and turns. The Bolts suffered an epic collapse during the first game of their matchup against the Blue Jackets before getting swept away, and while that may have been the biggest surprise, I don’t think many people expected the Penguins to suffer a similar fate or see the defending champion Capitals bow out in the first round.
The wild cards wreaked havoc in both conferences and there was nary a top seed to be found by the time the second round rolled around. Since then, we’ve been treated to some fantastic hockey (and some absolutely atrocious officiating) that’s culminated in a Stanley Cup final featuring the Boston Bruins and the St. Louis Blues, who will kick off their series on Memorial Day.
The Bruins had plenty of potential coming into the season but not a lot of people felt the same way about the Blues, who are appearing in the final for the first time since 1970. If you need some perspective, one sportsbook had them listed as 250-1 longshots ahead of the year, which seems like a bet only a sucker would make.
However, according to The Action Network, that didn’t stop Blues fan Scott Berry from casually throwing down $400 on St. Louis during a business trip to Las Vegas last year after realizing he’d make a cool $100,000 if his team managed to overcome the odds.
Berry made the bet after seeing another sportsbook had them listed at 150-1 and has been along for the ride ever since. On Tuesday, someone offered him $40,000 for the ticket but he’s decided to hold onto it—at least for now.
If you’re curious, the Bruins are listed at -150 favorites to win the series and are riding a seven-game win streak on the back of a scorching hot Tuukka Rask. However, they’ll be coming off of a long break when things kick off on Monday and will be facing off against another quality goaltender in the form of rookie Jordan Binnington.
If the series is even half as entertaining as the rest of the postseason has been, we’re in for one hell of a treat.