Following a three day Christmas break, the NHL is back on Saturday with a host of action available to be bet on. With the NFL playoffs right on the horizon and the final 4 of college football only a few days away it is an exciting time of the year. There is also college and NBA basketball out there for wagering. For the purposes of this article we’re going to take a look at the NHL of course. I definitely needed those three days off as it has been a tough go of things, as far as the NHL is concerned anyway. It is important that I come back from the Christmas break strong, and go on another big run that occurred not that long ago. Tonight I turn to a team that let me down a few days ago, but I hope they pay me back tonight.
The Boston Bruins haven’t had a picturesque season by any means. They’re 18-14-1-2 which is a far cry from the position they were in last year, or the last few seasons for that matter. It’s been awhile since we have had to look down in the standings to find the Bruins. However, there is still a lot of hockey to go this season, and if there is one team in the NHL that could fly up the standings, it may be the Bruins. All it could take is Tuukka Rask catching fire, which is definitely capable of, and they are back up front. Easier said than done though, as is always the case in sports. But would this surprise anyone? I have to say no. I think the Bruins catch a break tonight coming back after Christmas, as they take on a team that they have an extremely favorable history against, the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Jackets have long been a team caught in fluctuation. A couple good games, a couple bad games, and there you have a .500 hockey club. Prior to the Christmas break, this Jackets team was playing great hockey, however. They were winners in 8-2 games before the time off. Before then, the Blue Jackets lost six straight games. That doesn’t match their longest losing streak of the season, which stands at nine games, a stretch that lasted from mid-October to the middle of November. With that said, is it time for them to go on another skid after finding success of late? We’ll see. The answer to our question begins tonight in Columbus.
Boston Bruins @ Columbus Blue Jackets
The Blue Jackets are truly a team of streaks. In their series against the Bruins, they’ve clearly been streaking. Streaking not in a good way, but rather, in the opposite direction southward. Columbus has lost seven straight games against Boston. There are certain teams that teams don’t match up against well. This is one of those cases, as the Blue Jackets have struggled mightily with the B’s of Boston. Along with winning eight straight over the Jackets, the Bruins are 8-2 in their last 10 against Columbus. Rask has a career 1.56 GAA against them with a .946% and 4-1 record. In his last start against the Blue Jackets, Rask allowed only 1 goal on 27 shots. I think the defense starts to turn it up now. They are giving up 2.54 goals per game, which isn’t terrible, but not the top team in the league like we’ve seen. They’re scoring 2.54 goals per game as well.
Boston edges Columbus out in both of those categories. The BJ’s are scoring only 2.30 goals while allowing 3.21 goals per game. Not the formula for success. And actually with those stats, the Jackets are lucky they aren’t worst off than they are in the standings. Defensively that puts them 26th in the NHL and in terms of scoring they are 24th. I think this price should be in the -150 range. All of the numbers and trends are on the Bruins’ side tonight. I will lock the Bruins in for a regular size wager.
Pick – BRUINS TO WIN -130 @ 5dimes.eu (Best Odds)