NHL Odds, Pick & Preview: Bruins vs. Ducks (March 1)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images. Pictured: Boston Bruins standout Brad Marchand.
- The Ducks host the Bruins on Tuesday night in Anaheim.
- Can you trust the Bruins as road favorites, or does the value lie with the Ducks at plus money?
- Carol Schram breaks down the game and gives her top pick, below.
Bruins vs. Ducks Odds
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
Boston looks to make it six consecutive wins as it continues its Western road swing, taking on an Anaheim side in a free-fall down the Western Conference standings.
The Ducks will be desperate to bounce back here after suffering an embarrassing 4-0 loss to the New York Islanders in Sunday’s action.
Can Anaheim get moving back in the right direction after a positive start to what is still very much a developmental season?
Boston’s 7-0 trouncing of Los Angeles on Monday really put an exclamation mark on what has been a strong stretch of hockey, and the Bruins again look to be far from an easy outcome the postseason.
Particularly as the Bruins arguably hold the best combination of defensive play and goaltending out of Eastern Conference contenders, it’s surprising how much this team has flown under the radar.
The Bruins have allowed just 1.99 goals against per/60 minutes over the last month, leading the charge toward a 54.80 expected1goals % rate throughout those 10 games and their is zero indication anything should change moving forward.
Much of that span came with Boston missing Brad Marchand, but his absence allowed some pieces like Charlie Coyle, Craig Smith and Taylor Hall an opportunity to step up, and it seems like some of the players beyond the perfection trio are kicking a little more up front.
Jake Debrusk has caught fire, with points in the last five games (nine overall) for the team. The Bruins look to be skating toward better offensive form of late, and with the defensive play throughout appearing to remain rock solid, are offering the look of a well-balanced unit.
Linus Ullmark will get the start in the back-to-back situation, looking to build on a solid performance in Seattle this past Thursday, and holds a -3.9 goals saved above expected rating with a .910 save % through 27 games.
Anaheim competed at a surprisingly strong level to begin the season, but has slowly continued to post more and more middling results as the season has progressed.
The Ducks posted a 2-5-0 mark in February, controlling play to an xG rate of just 45.32 % across all strengths, and allowing a lot of chances against that helped contribute to a -12 goal differential.
Anaheim’s young group never figured to be an above-average team defensively, and a 3.24 xG against rate throughout the month of February seems about in line with what I have seen from this club. And it would certainly be fair to say that schedule has included a below-average collection of offensive units.
Troy Terry has trended toward less dominant form in what is still an altogether excellent season, and the offense appears not overly daunting. The Ducks’ top six will face a very tough matchup against a Bruins team holding two true shutdown pairings that’s looking to find more 5-on-5 offense.
It’s unclear whether or not we will see John Gibson return from illness, but he and Anthony Stolarz have managed shockingly similar numbers, although you would have to assume given Gibson’s pedigree he still offers somewhat of an upgrade regardless of the stats.
Stolarz holds a -1.9 GSAx rating with a .917 save % in 18 games played, while Gibson holds a +0.0 GSAx with a .911 save % throughout 38 outings this season.
Bruins vs. Ducks Pick
Anaheim has been in really rough form of late. And although this is a tough spot for the Bruins and certainly could be viewed as a potential let-down game, there is still just such a disparity in the form of these squads that I can’t look past the Bruins.
Los Angeles didn’t do the Ducks any favors here, allowing Boston to comfortably roll their lines skating through a game it led comfortably throughout.
Even with the lesser of the Bruins’ two goaltending options in Ullmark taking the cage, I feel they can likely keep Anaheim to livable offensive output.
However, the Bruins could certainly produce a reasonable number themselves against the Ducks, who have defended very poorly the last month and currently hold the look of a more balanced offense.
Overall, I feel we have enough of an edge here to look toward Boston on three-way line at -125 odds, as it looks to move to 3-0 on the once-daunting California swing.
Pick: Boston 60-Minute Line (-125 | Play to -140)
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