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Carolina vs. Boston,
12/01/2016 19:00 EDT,
Score: 1 - 2
Money Line: -169 Boston
8* Boston (7:05 ET): The Bruins have been fairly suspect at home thus far (just 5-5), but this is still a good price range for them to be in against a clearly inferior opponent. Sure, the B's just dropped a 3-2 decision in Philadelphia Tuesday night (shootout), their fourth loss in the last five games. But Carolina has dropped three of four overall and has won just three of its 13 road games to this point. Plus, like I said earlier, the 'Canes happen to be one of the weakest teams in the Eastern Conference. I'm a little surprised to see that the road team has enjoyed so much success in past head to head meetings between these two (3-0 last year), including Carolina's 27-17 record in Beantown. But, again, tonight will be a different story.
Boston may have lost four of its last five, but several key metrics indicate that they've outplayed their opponents during this time. One is that they've outshot those five foes by nearly eight per game. At home this season, the team is giving up just 26.4 shots per game. Sure, they are currently w/o two top defensemen - Zdeno Chara and John-Michael Liles. But they still have goaltender Tuukka Rask to lean on. Not only has Rask posted an overall save percentage of .938 this season (#5 in the league), but his career numbers vs. Carolina - 1.89 goals against average and .939 save percentage - are also quite good. I expect Rask to play well here and lead his team to the two points.
Carolina's overall team save percentage is really low (24th), due to it being dragged down by Eddie Lack. It will more than likely be Cam Ward between the pipes tonight. But that's okay b/c Ward has a losing record vs. the Bruins in his career w/ a save percentage of just .918. The Hurricanes, like Boston, have done a good job at limiting shots recently and I will tip my cap to their top ranked penalty killing unit. But I have to go back to their road woes as they are 18-48 L66 away from home if the game total is 5.0. That includes 0 for 7 so far this year. Boston has the better YTD goal differential and enters this game knowing that they thoroughly outplayed Philadelphia Tuesday night (had 47-21 edge in shots). 8* Boston