The Boston Bruins hope to complete the New York sweep after downing the Islanders, 3-1, last night at TD Garden. The Rangers, on the other hand, were licking their wounds after blowing a 3-2 lead with about a minute left in regulation. It didn’t take long for the Kings to end it in overtime. That was a game that Henrik Lundqvist wants to forget about quickly. He did not have his best game and will get the evening off against the Bruins.
Bulgarian Alexander Georgiev will get another chance to prove himself tonight. There is going to be a void between the pipes when Lundqvist does retire, and Georgiev has an opportunity to be the replacement. Georgiev is only 22 years old, so he has some time to play better hockey. However, the effort of 20-year-old Carter Hart in Philadelphia is making it difficult on other young goaltenders. Everyone is going to be compared to Hart, who has been making it look easy.
With the win against the Islanders, the Bruins advanced to 29-17-6 on the season. They’ve had a couple of impressive wins recently against the Capitals and Islanders. In both games, the Bruins leaned on strong play from their goaltending and defence.
Rask has been on fire and he earned the right to get a night off against the Rangers this evening. Jaroslav Halak, who has been more than serviceable backup, will look to keep things rolling for Boston defensively. If they can play lockdown defence once again, Georgiev is going to need to have the game of his life for the Rangers to beat the Bruins. Boston has been floated around as a potential destination for Kevin Hayes, so he may be playing against his future employer in this one. Head below for our free Bruins vs. Rangers pick.
Boston Bruins vs. N.Y. Rangers Pick
The Bruins can win playing this style of hockey. It will give other teams fits in the playoffs if this defensively effort can carry over into the playoffs. Bruce Cassidy called out his team as week ago and they’ve responded to his word. There aren’t many teams in the Eastern Conference that would be happy to draw a team who can play a physical style effectively. They are currently 7th in the conference with 65 points, 6 points ahead of the Blue Jackets and 7 points ahead of the last team out, the Buffalo Sabres. Best of all for the Bruins is the fact that they are a healthy team right now, knock on wood.
Rask has been on fire, but the job is going to go to Halak between the pipes after Rask played a night ago. He has been solid with a 2.49 GAA and 0.918 save percentage for the Bruins this season. However, he hasn’t seen a win since January 3rd, so I’m sure he has to be hungry to finally get a victory.
Georgiev was blasted in his last start, as he allowed 7 goals in a loss against the Blue Jackets. Inconsistent play in net has been the story of the year for him. Georgiev has allowed at least 4 goals in seven of seventeen starts this season. He allowed a goal in relief duty against the Flyers on January 29th, which was his last appearance.
He will go into Wednesday with a GAA and save percentage below par of 3.28 and 0.897. It’s likely going to be a tough night for him if his offence can’t help out. The Bruins have allowed just 1 goal in their last 120 minutes of hockey. Despite playing on a back-to-back, the Bruins have some confidence and momentum in their corner in NYC tonight. Consider the Bruins on your sports betting card for Wednesday.