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Boston Bruins Vs. Ottawa Senators Betting Analysis
By Bob Duff
The last time the Senators and Bruins clashed in the playoffs, it involved the original NHL Senators (1917-34) and the series took place during the 1927 Stanley Cup final. Ottawa won that one, the last time a team from the city won the Cup, so it could prove ominous if the Senators move on beyond this series.
A breakdown of the Ottawa/Boston match up, with odds provided courtesy of BetOnline.ag:
You can argue that the Bruins are the playoff-hardened team, with seven players still around from their 2013 Stanley Cup finalist club but the reality is that the Bruins are doing it with smoke and mirrors. Boston went 11-25 this season against fellow playoff clubs, a solid indication that when push comes to shove, the Bruins will be shunted aside.
Forward Patrice Bergeron and defenseman Zdeno Chara are shadows of the players they once were and Brad Marchand is a wildcard, capable of dominating a game or taking himself out of the game via a foolish, selfish penalty.
Tuukka Rask, the netminder who backstopped the Bruins to the 2012-13 Stanley Cup final, set personal bests this season for wins (37) and shutouts (eight) but his. 915 save percentage matched a career low and was well below his career number of .923.
The Senators dominated the Bruins this season, going 4-0, and have the ultimate X-factor in the series in defenseman Erik Karlsson, their team captain. A Hart and Norris Trophy contender, Karlsson led the Senators in scoring with 71 points and is capable of playing 30 minutes a night and completely taking control of a game. Three Ottawa players topped 20 goals and nine lit red lamps in double digits.
Senators goalie Craig Anderson enters the postseason as the NHL's first star of the week after he went 3-0-1 with a 1.44 goals-against average, .943 save percentage and one shutout to guide the Senators (44-28-10, 98 points) to gain seven out of a possible 10 standings points, a second-place finish in the Atlantic Division and with it home-ice advantage over Boston. Included in that performance was a 28-save effort in a 2-1 shootout win over the Bruins.
Pick: The Senators (+160) in seven games
Here you have two teams at opposite ends of the spectrum in terms of the over/under. The Senators like to play it close to the vest. They win when they keep the score close and they keep it low.
Ottawa was an impressive 21-9-10 in one-goal games this season. The Senators posted 10 victories by a 2-1 score, six by a 3-2 margin, and five that were 2-0 decisions, as well a 1-0 win and a trio of 3-1 triumphs. The total went under in 28 Ottawa home games during the regular season.
Boston became a different team when Bruce Cassidy replaced Claude Julien as coach and the Bruins are clearly a different team than the Senators in terms of style. The Bruins went 18-8-1 under Cassidy to climb into a playoff spot, but they did so while scoring four or more goals in 12 of those victories. Boston went 3-6 under Cassidy when scoring three or fewer goals. Boston went over in 37 games this season.
Advice: Play the under in Ottawa and the over in Boston.
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