Boston Bruins will take on the Carolina Hurricanes and open Friday’s action in the NHL playoffs. The home side could be in big trouble if they don’t win this game. The visitors have been running hot lately, and they want to continue that way.
Boston couldn’t provide an upset in the first pair of matches on the road. They now need to defend the home ice to level the series after the upcoming two games. On the other hand, Carolina is full of confidence, and the away side enjoys an excellent winning streak. Another success could take them one step away from the next stage in the post-season.
Boston Bruins – Can they provide better performances at home?
The Bruins return to the home ice after three straight outings, including the closing game of the regular season. They didn’t enjoy a good time on the road since they suffered three defeats. Boston has had issues in defense during that period, allowing five goals in each of the three matches away from home. On the other hand, their offense couldn’t produce more than two goals per contest. Boston heads to this encounter after losing 5-2 in the most recent one, despite having four shots more than their rivals. However, the Bruins had ten penalty minutes more than Carolina.
Patrice Bergeron managed to find the back of the net twice during the post-season, while Charlie McAvoy has a pair of assists. Boston’s best assistant from the regular season, Brad Marchand, had just one assist in the first two games in the series. David Pastrnak failed to enter the Bruins’ offensive charts in the playoffs, despite being the team’s top scorer with 40 goals at the regular stage. Regarding the goaltending, Linus Ullmark could have been better since his save percentage is only .860
Expected Line-Up: Jeremy Swayman, Derek Forbort, Charlie McAvoy, Taylor Hall, Charlie Coyle, David Pastrnak
with best odds
Carolina Hurricanes – Will they extend their victorious run?
The Hurricanes have been smoking hot over the past few weeks since they managed to book eight victories in a row. They continued the momentum in the post-season, winning both games on the home ice for a 2-0 lead in this series. Carolina didn’t have any problems in front of their fans against Boston, celebrating 5-1 and 5-2 wins. They were 2-0 ahead after the first period and headed to the final third with a 4-1 advantage in the latest match. Despite scoring only 16.7 percent of their power play opportunities, the Hurricanes killed 87.5% of the rival’s power plays.
Tony DeAngelo leads the Hurricanes’ assists charts in the post-season, with four in the opening two games of this tie. Nino Niederreiter managed to find the back of the Bruins’ net three times, while Sebastian Aho scored twice and had one assist. Vincent Trocheck got his name displayed on the scoresheet once while logging two assists so far. Jaccob Slavin has contributed to Carolina’s offense with three assists in the playoffs, while three other skaters have chipped in with two points. On the goal, Antti Raanta concedes only 0.89 times per match while having an impressive .976 save percentage.
Expected Line-Up: Antti Raanta, Tony DeAngelo, Jaccob Slavin, Andrei Svechnikov, Sebastian Aho, Teuvo Teravainen
Expert Pick #1 – Over 5.5 @-120
The bookies keep posting this margin in the totals margin, and I won’t back off from taking the Over again. Boston needs to produce something in the final third, while Carolina should continue being explosive in the offense. Therefore, I expect to see at least six goals here, and that will be my first pick.
Expert Pick #2 – Hurricanes to win @+110
Despite the bookies favoring the hosts here, I’m leaning towards the Hurricanes since they have been impressive lately. I get the case that Boston is much better on the home ice, and they have four straight wins, but it’s hard to resist backing the visitors on the plus money odds. I’ll go with this one as my second bet.
Expert Pick #3 – Hurricanes to win & Both to Score @+185
My third pick is a bit riskier, but I’m going to take my chances since success could bring nice returns. Both teams should find the back of the opponent’s net, and combined with an away win, we could get excellent odds.