What Does ‘Minus 2.5’ Mean in Sports Betting?

When the Los Angeles Kings played the New York Rangers in game seven of the 2019 Stanley Cup finals, the final score was 3-2 in favor of the Kings. After the game, many people were wondering what the score might have been if goalie John Gibson had played at his usual level. One number that stuck out was 2.5. This was the score of Gibson’s teammates, who had to play without their netminder in Game 7.

What does this score mean? Is it good or bad for the betting market? Let’s take a quick look.

Negative Score On Special Occasions

When a player has a negative score, it usually means they had a sub-par game and you should not put much faith in the number. However, there are instances where a team will score less than 2.5 even when their goalie was at his best. Let’s take a quick look at some of these situations.

New York Islanders Vs Vancouver Canucks

The New York Islanders and the Vancouver Canucks met in the first round of the 2019 Stanley Cup playoffs. This was an exciting series, as the Islanders made it to the conference finals for the first time in their history. The series was tied at two games apiece before the Isles took Game 7 by a 3-2 score. The Islanders have been a low-scoring team all season long, so it was not a huge surprise that they did not put up many points in this game.

Even though it was only one game, there were still many people who bet on it. The Over/Under for this game was set at 2.5 goals, which was chosen by both sides as a compromise. Most people expected the Canucks to win this game, as they were the higher-profile team and were hosting the series. Many people thought the game would be low-scoring.

However, the Islanders frustrated the Vancouver fans, as they scored three times in the first period. After that, it was all the Canucks as they scored three more times to take the series. This was one of the rare times where a negative score turned out to be a good thing. It was a relief to the betting public because they did not have to chase the over/under down.

Red Wings Vs Sharks

The Chicago Blackhawks beat the San Jose Sharks in the Western Conference finals, 4-2. The following season, the Red Wings met the Sharks in the first round of the playoffs. The series was tied at one game apiece before heading to overtime, where the Red Wings won 4-3. It was the same old story as the Blackhawks were up 2-0 in the series and then cruised to a four-game sweep.

The odd thing about this is that Game 3 featured one of the best games of the year by San Jose goalie Joe Heller. He made some incredible saves, including an overtime stoppage score to even the series at two games apiece. The SHARKS had nothing left in the tank in the last game of the series, as they were shut out by the Red Wings 5-0.

With the outcome already decided in the Hawks’ favor, people were pleasantly surprised that the final score was so low. This was due mainly to a couple of key plays by Jimmy Howard, who made several huge saves throughout the series. It was mainly a defensive series, as neither side could muster many goals, so most people did not have to bet much on it. They can rest assured that the defense will keep the score low, as the Red Wings advanced to the Stanley Cup finals for the third straight year and the Sharks did not make it past the second round for the first time in their history.

Barry Vs Yandany Vs Luongo

The Nashville Predators beat the Colorado Avalanche, 4-1, in the Western Conference finals. The following season, the Vegas Golden Knights and the Los Angeles Kings faced off in the first round of the playoffs. It was a battle of former Stanley Cup winners, as the Golden Knights won the series in seven games.

There is no question that Jeff Barry had a phenomenal playoff run, as he stopped all but one of the 33 shots he faced in seven games. Even more remarkably, he did not allow more than two goals in any game. His performance in the series was enough for the Predators to advance to the Stanley Cup finals for the second straight year.

However, in the Stanley Cup finals, the Predators met the Tampa Bay Lightning. The two teams split the first four games of the series, which was decided in overtime as the Lightning took Game 5 by a 4-3 score. With the series tied at four games apiece, it was anybody’s guess as to who would win the next game. The Predators were not one bit surprised, as Barry once again stepped up with a huge performance. He stopped all 31 shots he faced in a 3-2 overtime win to complete the comeback and take the series in seven games. It was certainly a remarkable run for Barry, who had been a backup for most of his career.

It’s important to note that not all performances by a goalie during a game are created equal. Some goalies will be better than others, depending on a number of factors. Sometimes, teams will struggle to score even when the defense is unable to keep the puck out of the back of the net. In these situations, betting is easy because we are simply comparing apples to oranges. The goalie will have played a huge role in the game, so we can safely assume that whatever happened, it was not the other team’s fault. When a goalie plays this well in a losing cause, fans of the losing team can feel a little bit better because at least their guy played well.

On the other hand, some goalies will be good enough to keep their teams in every game, even when they are playing badly. In these cases, the betting public will need to dig deep into their pockets because the goalies’ performance does not justify the score line. In the 2014 Stanley Cup finals, for example, 2014 Vezina winner Sergei Braden had a minus-7 goal differential in the playoffs, including a 3.00 GAA. He stopped 97% of shots he faced, so his numbers looked pretty good. Unfortunately for the betting public, his team lost every game they played and it was clearly not due to his performance. In the end, the public had to settle for a minus-4 score in the final total, as the Boston Bruins won in seven games.

‘Minus 2.5’ In General

In the world of sports betting, there is no standard abbreviation for ‘minus two point five’. However, we know what it means, as these are the two numbers that follow a goal or an upset win. For the sake of consistency, we will use ‘m2.5′ from here on out. It is important to note that, although these are relatively common numbers in the world of sports, they do not necessarily mean that the game was low-scoring or that the defense played well. This is because there are many different scenarios where a goalie can have a sub-par game and still maintain a score that follows the m2.5 pattern. This is why you should be careful about taking a number too literally, especially when betting on hockey, as the math does not always add up.

Scoring Was Low But The Defense Was Good

In the 2019-20 season, only five games reached the three-point mark, as four games finished with a 2-2 score and one game ended in a 3-1 win. On the other hand, there were 22 games that ended in a 1-1 draw. In all of these cases, the defense was quite good, as they limited their opponents to 17 goals. This is quite an accomplishment, considering that the total number of goals scored in the entire season was 632.

To put this into context, there were only two cases where the opposing team scored more than three times in a game. One was a 4-3 win by the Ottawa Senators over the Toronto Maple Leafs and the other was a 3-1 win by the Colorado Avalanche over the Nashville Predators. In all other cases, the opposition failed to score even once and this clearly shows the importance of good defense in today’s NHL. If the defense does their job, goalies do not always need to get any credit because they rarely get the glory that comes with putting up big numbers.