NHL Odds, Preview, Prediction: Bruins vs. Kings (February 28)
Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Jeremy Swayman.
- The Bruins travel to Los Angeles on for a battle between streaking teams.
- Boston has won four in a row, going against a Kings squad that's won five straight.
- Our analyst breaks down the game and gives his top pick below.
Bruins vs. Kings Odds
|Time||10:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
We have two extremely hot teams facing off in Monday’s nightcap as the Atlantic Division’s fourth-place Boston Bruins travel to Los Angeles to take on the Pacific Division’s second-place Kings. It will be the first meeting between these two teams since December of 2019.
Two teams battle amidst big win streaks, and something will have to give. Can the Bruins keep it going on the road, or will the Kings win and defend their home ice?
Swayman Getting It Done for Bruins
The Boston Bruins continue their six-game road trip tonight, riding a four-game winning streak. Boston is coming off of Saturday’s 3-1 road win over the San Jose Sharks.
Saturday’s game was yet another low-scoring affair for a Bruins squad that has seen its games go under 5.5 total goals in six straight road contests. The main reason for these low-scoring games is the superb goaltending play of Monday’s projected starter, Jeremy Swayman.
Swayman has really solidified himself as the team’s number one goaltender following the inconsistent play of Linus Ullmark and the failed comeback attempt for Tuukka Rask. Swayman has fully taken advantage of the opportunity as he has been unconscious between the pipes lately.
Over his last five starts, Swayman has allowed just two or fewer goals in all five, posting an absurd 0.964 save percentage in that span. While Swayman has been fantastic, his defense in front of him deserves a bunch of credit as well.
Led by superstar Charlie McAvoy, Boston’s blue line has been the league’s best this season as it ranks first in the league in 5-on-5 expected goals against per 60 minutes (xGA) and first in average expected goal value of opposing 5-on-5 shot attempts. Boston is only allowing 2.69 goals per game, good for fifth in the league this season.
Kings Buoyed by Quick in Goal
The Bruins are not the only team riding a win streak into this matchup as the Kings have now won five in a row and eight of their last 10 games. While the beginning of this stretch saw some high-scoring games, the Kings have begun to regress back to the mean as two of their last three games have gone under 5.5 total goals.
I am optimistic for the total of this one to stay low as well for one main reason, and that is the goalie matchup. I already went over how well Swayman has been, but Jonathan Quick has also quietly been one of the best starting goaltenders in the league this season.
Slated as Monday’s projected starter, Quick has produced a quality 0.913 save percentage this season and currently ranks third among starting goaltenders in 5-on-5 goals saved above expected per 60 minutes (GSAx). Like the Bruins, the Kings also have a very stingy defense in front of the net.
Los Angeles’ blue line is frustrating to play against, led by Drew Doughty and the resurgent season he is having. The Kings currently rank first in the league in opposing shots on goal per game and sixth in opposing goals scored per game.
Bruins vs. Kings Pick
Both teams are projected to start very good goaltenders, and I am comfortable betting on them to both continue to be tough to score against. With both teams riding big win streaks, I think this will be a very competitive game with each roster respecting how good the other team is.
I am hoping we see a possession battle tonight with both teams just trying to win the neutral zone, and thus a likely low-scoring game.
Pick: Bruins/Kings u5.5 (-110) | Play up to (-120)