Thursday's NHL Playoffs: Ducks v Kings and Bruins v Canadians
Game 4: Boston Bruins (-131)at Montreal Canadiens (+119)
Although Boston is down 2-1 in this series, they are still favored by 1.5 goals heading in to Montreal for Game 4. Perhaps the reason Boston is expected to win, is due to what happened in Game 1. The Canadiens won, but in double overtime, holding off a furious Bruins' rally. Boston scored three goals in the third period to send it to an extra session. Had Matt Bartkowski not committed a holding penalty, Canadiens'' defenseman P.K. Subban would not have scored the game winning power play goal. If the Bruins would have won the series opener, they could be looking to take a commanding 3 games to 1 lead tonight.
Boston has shown great ability to score in bunches when they need to. In Game 2, the Bruins got four goals, one each from Milan Lucic, Reily Smith, Patrice Bergeron and Dougie Hamiliton. That type of balanced scoring was one of the reasons experts picked Boston to go to the finals. Although Boston has balanced scoring, they are losing the goalie battle. Vezina trophy finalist Tuuaka Rask has been out played by Casey Price. Although Price won a gold medal this year, he is not considered in Rask's league. Expect Rask to step up his game and lead Boston to victory in Game 4 and go on to win the series where they are -105 (Canadiens are -115).
Game 3: Anaheim Ducks (+123)at Los Angeles Kings (-135)
The Los Angeles Kings lead the series 2-0 are favored by 1.5 goals against the Anaheim Ducks for some very good reasons. Jonathan Quick was unstoppable in Game 2, as he only allowed one goal in 37 shots he faced. The Kings scored two goals in the first period and it was more than enough for the game's best goal tender. The Kings were so dominant, they heard mostly silence from the Anaheim fans. "It doesn't even feel like being on the road," Kings coach Daryl Sutter said. Sadly for the Ducks, they will be on the road tonight in Game 3.
Even though most of the talk has been about the Kings' defense, Anze Kopitar needs to get his props as being a big part of the Kings' success. Kopitar leads the NHL in points this post-season. He also is joined by Marian Gaborik, who scored his sixth playoff goal in Game 2. The Ducks can't get anything going on offense this series, as Hart Trophy finalist Ryan Getzalf has been neutralized. Corey Perry has also struggled, as he only has one assist in the last two games. The Kings have now won six straight and will most likely extend that number to seven in tonight's game. If you are a Ducks believer, then now is a good time to take them to win the series because it is listed as +450, compared to -600 for the Kings who are only two wins away from advancing to the NHL Western Conference Final.
* Betting lines mentioned in this article are subject to change due to time sensitivity. Please visit the sports betting lines for up to date odds.
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