This is definitely not how we wanted to start our playoff picks as we have dropped two straight picks and are in need of a winner tonight. The LA Kings did not look like the same team last night as the Sharks were able to score six goals on the usually rock solid Kings defence, something that pretty much nobody saw coming. With a total of nine goals, the two teams doubled the OVER/UNDER line of 4.5, also something nobody saw coming. That is a tough loss and we are most definitely due for a winner, so lets dive back into the action and get back onto the right track tonight.
Detroit Red Wings @ Boston Bruins
My Pick – UNDER 5 (-110)
The one and only original six playoff series in this year’s Stanley Cup playoffs kicks off tonight in Beantown as the heavily favoured Boston Bruins will take on the Detroit Red Wings. The Red Wings look like this year’s version of a Cinderella team already as the team refused to quit when they lost their top two players in Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg for the better part of the last 30 games of the season. Detroit rallied around their youngsters and Mike Babcock certainly put his name in the hat for Coach of the Year as his team is in the playoffs for the 23rd season in a row. Things won’t be easy as the Bruins come in as the heavy favourite and the first ranked home defensive team in the league as they give up an impressive 1.7 goals per game at the TD Garden this season and gave up just three goals over their last two home games of the season.
One of the big reasons the Red Wings are in the playoffs is their team defence that became the focus once they lost their offensive superstars. The Red Wings actually finished 6th overall in goals per game against on the road with 2.7, and are 9th in the league in road penalty killing with a 84.1% clip in that category. In fact, over their last ten head-to-head meetings, the Red Wings have held the Bruins to just 1.9 goals for per game, something that no other team in the league can say. The Red Wings have won eight of those contests, and they are 7-1 over their last eight games against the Bruins. They are also 4-2 over their last six games at the TD Garden, giving Red Wings fan much hope entering the series. More importantly for this pick though, the total has gone UNDER in 11 of their last 16 meetings and in 7 of their last 9 meetings in Boston. I am looking for a close, low scoring game tonight to open up a series that may just go a few games longer than the general consensus may think.