What do the St. Louis Blues and Boston Bruins have in common? Both are battling for their respective division leads and are Stanley Cup contenders. The Bruins are one of the better clubs in the NHL at home, but St. Louis has a winning road record. The B’s are favored on the NHL betting lines in their first meeting of the regular season.
How to Bet Blues at Bruins NHL Betting Lines & Expert PickNHL.tvRadio: Newsradio 1120 KMOX (St. Louis) / WBZ-FM 98.5 (Boston)Opening NHL Betting Lines: Bruins -130, Blues +120 (5.5)
Last SeasonIt’s the first meeting of 2017-18 between these two, with Boston going to St. Louis on March 21. Last year, they split. In Boston, the Blues won 4-2. Robert Bortuzzo and Paul Stastny scored 2:12 apart in the second and Jake Allen had 39 saves. Jori Lehtera scored twice for St. Louis. Colton Parayko and Patrik Berglund each had two assists. Star Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara played just one shift in the second period before exiting with an undisclosed injury. Longtime Blues captain David Backes scored for Boston in his first game against his former club.In St. Louis, the Bruins won 5-3. Brad Marchand scored twice, including an empty netter. Frank Vatrano, Brandon Carlo and Torey Krug also scored for the Bruins. Tuukka Rask made 14 saves. Backes fought former teammate Joel Edmundson. Parayko, Berglund and Kyle Brodziak scored for the Blues. Allen was pulled for Carter Hutton after allowing three goals on 11 shots in the first period.
Why Bet on St. Louis?The Blues came out of the All-Star break on Tuesday and won their third in a row, 3-1, over Montreal. Carter Hutton stopped 33 shots in his sixth straight start — the 32-year-old Hutton appears to have supplanted Jake Allen as St. Louis’ No. 1 goaltender. He is 8-1-1 in his last 10 starts and has stopped 94 of 96 shots over the last three games. He has a 13-4-1 record with a 1.70 goals-against-average and a .945 save percentage this season.Patrik Berglund scored a power play goal in the win. Berglund’s goal at the 5:14 mark of the third period gave the Blues a 2-0 lead at the time, and they never looked back. He finished the night with four shots on goal and four hits in 13:32 of ice time. He has now picked up a point in three of his last four games. The 29-year-old has seven goals and 11 points in 28 games this season.Ivan Barbashev scored his second goal of the season by simply sending the puck on net. Coming down the right side, he just flipped one toward goal and it had just the right amount of height to lob over the blocker of Carey Price.At 31-18-3, the Blues have matched their high-water mark for the season at 13 games above .500. The last time they were there, at 21-8-2, was after an overtime win Dec. 10 against Buffalo in what was the team’s first game without the injured Jaden Schwartz.
Why Bet on Boston?Perhaps the All-Star break came at a bad time for Boston (29-11-8) as it had a five-game winning streak snapped in a 3-1 home loss to Anaheim on Tuesday. Adam Henrique and Jakob Silfverberg scored in the first period, when Anaheim held Boston to just five shots. The Ducks became the first team to beat the Bruins in regulation since Washington’s 5-3 win Dec. 14 at Boston.Anton Khudobin stopped 24 shots for the Bruins, who never recovered after being outshot 15-5 in the first period. Ryan Spooner scored the lone Boston goal. He finished the game alongside Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak after Anders Bjork was forced to leave the game with an injury. Spooner scored with 42 seconds remaining in the game to get the Bruins to within one, but an empty net goal by the Ducks seconds later sealed the game.Spooner will likely see time in the top-six with Bjork sidelined and Brad Marchand suspended. Bjork was injured after taking a cross-check to the shoulder from Ducks blue liner Francois Beauchemin. Bjork is not expected to play in this one.
Will Rask Be Part of the Game?No. 1 Tuukka Rask will be in net. Since opening the 2017-18 season with a 3-8-2 record, Rask has reeled off a sparking 16-0-2 mark, while working behind a surging Boston squad that is on a 14-0-4 run. During his recent dominant stretch, Rask has stopped 94 percent of the shots he’s faced; during his lousy stretch, he stopped just under 90 percent of the shots he faced. Even if Rask’s save percentage regresses and he stops roughly 92 percent of the shots he faces for the rest of the season, the Bruins will be in good shape.Another Bruin playing well is Torey Krug. his first 25 games this season Krug had a rating of -10 and only had 4 goals and 14 assists. He was playing out of position and making basic mistakes. Since then Krug boasts a rating of +11 and scored 3 goals and 8 assists. With Charlie McAvoy out due to injury the Bruins need Krug to perform well. He is now one of the elder statesmen of the Bruins defensive core.
Latest NHL Betting Trends
- St. Louis is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 games
- St. Louis is 5-1 SU in the last 6 games
- The total went UNDER in 5 of St. Louis’s last 6 games
- Boston is 1-4 ATS in the last 5 games
- Boston is 5-1 SU in the last 6 games
- The total went UNDER in 6 of Boston’s last 7 games