Back-to-back openers favor home team

If recent history is any indication, the Chicago Blackhawks may have an advantage with the first two games of the Western Conference finals against the Los Angeles Kings being played back-to-back on Saturday and Sunday at the United Center.

Since 1990, there have been 12 occasions where a playoff series has started with games on back-to-back days, and seven times the home team has started 2-0, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Three times the teams split the first two games and twice the visiting team swept the first two.

Overall, the home team has a 17-7 record (.708 win percentage) in back-to-back games, compared to a .591 win percentage when the first two games did not fall on consecutive days.

Before 1990, having games on back-to-back days in the playoffs was common.