Avalanche vs. Bruins Odds, Picks, Prediction: NHL Betting Preview (December 3)

Avalanche vs. Bruins Odds, Picks, Prediction: NHL Betting Preview (December 3) article feature image

Mitchell Leff/Getty Images. Pictured: Linus Ullmark.

  • The defending champs face a stiff test as they travel to Boston to face the Bruins.
  • Boston has yet to lose at home this season, but Colorado will be looking to end that streak.
  • Carol Schram previews the game and shares her best bet below.

Avalanche vs. Bruins Odds

Avalanche Odds+146
Bruins Odds-176
Over/Under6 (-122 / +100)
Time7 p.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The defending Stanley Cup champions will face one of their toughest tests this season when they arrive at TD Garden for a date with the Boston Bruins.

After a short summer, and with a significant list of injuries, Colorado is off to a respectable 13-7-1 start. Meanwhile, Boston is one of the biggest surprises of the year and is riding a league-record 13-game home winning streak to start its season.

Can the Avalanche end that streak Saturday? Here's the latest on both teams, and your best bet for the game.

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Colorado Avalanche

Colorado is on a four-game road trip, which started with a 5-0 loss in Winnipeg on Tuesday and was followed by a 6-4 win in Buffalo on Thursday. Alexandar Georgiev has played the past three games in net for the Avalanche and is an impressive 11-3-1 for the year, with a .922 save percentage and 6.8 goals saved above expected.

After winning seven of eight games to start November, the Avalanche have been in a win one, lose one pattern for the past couple of weeks. True to their reputation, they're still a high-scoring squad and boast the NHL's best power play, with a success rate of 33.8%. Their penalty kill could use improvement, and they're in the middle of the pack in expected goals share at 5-on-5. But somehow, they're still one of the stingiest defensive teams in the league.

As far as injuries go: Gabriel Landeskog, Valeri Nichushkin and Bowen Byram have all been on the ice this week, but don't have definite timelines yet for their returns. Evan Rodrigues and Kurtis MacDermid aren't expected back anytime soon, Martin Kaut has missed the past two games with illness and Josh Manson missed the third period in Buffalo on Thursday. Defenseman Andreas Englund was recalled from the AHL Colorado Eagles on Friday.

Boston Bruins

The Bruins are in the middle of a four-game homestand that has begun with a pair of wins.

Boston is the highest-scoring team in the league this season, averaging 3.95 goals per game. The Bruins are also nearly as good as the Avalanche on the power play (30.1%).

Boston ranks fourth in expected goals share at 5-on-5 (55.09%), has the league's third-best penalty kill and allows the fewest goals per game (2.18).

All told, the Bruins are 9-1-0 in their past 10 games and eight of those wins have come in regulation, all by multi-goal margins.

Boston is also reasonably healthy. Only winger Craig Smith is questionable for Saturday, as he has been day-to-day with an upper-body injury.

After being knocked out of last week's game against Carolina, goalie Linus UIlmark has been cleared to play. Jeremy Swayman handled the netminding duties against the Lightning, so it's likely Ullmark will get back into action on Saturday. Ullmark is 13-1-0 with a .935 save percentage, 2.00 goals-against average and 9.6 goals saved above expected.

Avalanche vs. Bruins Pick

The Avalanche opened at +100, but the line has moved significantly in the Bruins' favor. As of Friday night, FanDuel is offering the most tempting moneyline for bettors who want to back Colorado (+150). Considering that these are two very good teams that do just about everything well, it's not inconceivable that the Avalanche could snap Boston's home winning streak.

But you've also got two of the league's hottest goaltenders likely going head-to-head. In a measuring-stick game that both teams should take seriously, a low-scoring affair could very well be in the cards.

Check the starting goaltenders after Saturday's morning skate. If the matchup is Georgiev vs. Ullmark, the under should be the best bet for this game.

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