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Men’s Hockey East Tournament Semifinals: Odds, Point Spreads, Over/Under

It’s close!

John Quackenbos, BC Athletics

The Men’s Hockey East Tournament semifinals and finals are this weekend, and the quarterfinals round was all chalk. The top four seeds all advanced to the TD Garden for Friday’s semifinals matchups, which means we’ve got ourselves a pretty competitive field.

Now that we’ve got ourselves a final four, let’s project out the first round of the tournament using each team’s KRACH and GRaNT Ratings. The two systems are used for different purposes: KRACH is best used to calculate game odds, and GRaNT is best used to calculate game scores.

First and foremost, here are the odds to win the entire tournament. These results are simulated using KRACH, based on the odds of each team winning its game and the odds of defeating each possible opponent in the finals:

#2 Northeastern: 29.2%
#3 Providence: 25.71%
#1 Boston College: 24.04%
#4 Boston University: 21.05%

That is... something. All four teams are within 8% odds of each other, and no one has worse than a 1 in 5 chance of winning a 4 team tournament. It almost doesn’t get any closer than that.

Perhaps not surprisingly, the four teams’ chances are directly in order of their KRACH rankings. With the teams 11th, 13th, 15th, and 17th nationally, though, it’s all pretty close. Boston College does get a relative boost from getting to play the 4th best team of the four, but not enough to give them the best odds to win.

Let’s break down each of the semifinal matchups.

Semifinal #1: Friday, March 16th, 5pm — NESN
No. 4 Boston University Terriers (19-13-4, 12-8-4 MHEA)
vs. No. 1 Boston College Eagles (20-13-3, 18-6-0 MHEA)

KRACH Projected Line:
Boston College -109 (52.2%)

GRaNT Projected Spread:
Boston University -0.15

GRaNT Projected Final Score:
Boston University 2.85, Boston College 2.70

GRaNT Projected Over/Under:

Interestingly, we’ve got some disagreement between the two methodologies — KRACH calls for a BC victory, while GRaNT thinks the Terriers will come out ahead. Both agree, though, that this matchup is certainly a toss-up. The Eagles in particular will have to play better than they played against Merrimack if they hope to advance to the finals and keep their season alive.

As we pointed our earlier this week, this is the first times these two teams have met with a chance to end the other’s season since 2006.

Semifinal #2: Friday, March 16th, 8pm — NESN
No. 3 Providence College Friars (22-10-4, 13-7-4 MHEA)
vs. No. 2 Northeastern Huskies (23-8-5, 15-6-3 MHEA)

KRACH Projected Line:
Northeastern -109 (52.2%)

GRaNT Projected Spread:
Northeastern -0.45

GRaNT Projected Final Score:
Northeastern 2.94, Providence 2.49

GRaNT Projected Over/Under:

Interestingly, KRACH has the exact same odds for both semifinal matchups, and they’re both complete toss-ups. However, we do have agreement between KRACH and GRaNT on the NU/PC game — both are calling for a close Northeastern win.

The winner of the second semifinal will be projected to win the final, thanks to both Norhteastern and Providence being ahead of both BC and BU in KRACH and GRaNT, but you can probably throw all four teams in a hat and pick a winner given how close the four teams are.