Boston Bruins at New York Rangers

 

 

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The Boston Bruins continue to lead the East division at 11-5-2 with 24 points but have lost each of the last two and four of the last five. On Friday night, Boston lost to the New York Rangers 6-2 and have allowed 13 goals in the last two games while scoring just four. The Bruins have been caught by the Washington Capitals and are now tied with the Capitals atop the division. Poor play at the blue line and between the pipes has cost Boston while the offense has also come up short off late.

With its victory on Friday over the Bruins in the first two games against Boston, New York is 7-8-3 with 17 points. The Rangers are sixth in the East division seven points behind both Boston and Washington. New York has won 3 of its last four with only a loss to Philadelphia over that span. The Rangers defense and goaltending has allowed an average of only 2.25 goals over the last four games and has won three of the four.

Bruins defense must close ranks

Boston is allowing an average of 2.72 goals per game but the Bruins during their last five games played have allowed an average of 4.60 goals per game with the result being four losses and just one win. Tuukka Rask continues to play as the No. 1 goalie for Boston but has struggled over the last 3 starts and is 7-3-1 with a 2.86 goals-against average and .892 save percentage. Backup Jaroslav Halak is 4-2-1 with a 2.42 goals against average and .903 save percentage. The Boston penalty kill unit has been effective 87.3% of the time.

The Bruins in the attack zone are averaging 2.94 goals per game. Brad Marchand is the leading goal scorer for Boston with 10, and the Bruins center is also leading the team in assists with 12 and points with 22. David Pastrnak is 2nd in goals scored with nine and Patrice Bergeron is third with eight. Boston is scoring 27.3% of the time while on the power play and the Bruins have scored 15 goals with the man advantage.

Injury Report: David Krejci and Kevan Miller are questionable for Sunday, while Matt Grzelcyk, Ondrej Kase and Jeremy Lauzon are out indefinitely.

Rangers need to increase goal scoring

The New York Rangers are playing without Artemi Panarin who was leading the club in goals scored before taking a leave of absence and the Rangers have been affected by that loss of that goalscoring. New York is scoring an average of 2.67 goals per game led by Chris Kreider with nine. The second leading active goal scorer for New York is Ryan Strome with six. Adam Fox is leading New York in assists with 9, while Strome and Pavel Buchnevich are tied for the lead in points with 13. New York has scored 11 power play goals and is scoring only 15.5% of the time with the man advantage.

The Rangers have had solid play between the pipes this season as New York is allowing an average of 2.61 goals per game and the penalty-kill unit has been effective 85.1% of the time when the Rangers are short-handed. Igor Shesterkin is 4-6-1 with a 2.40 goals-against average and .919 save percentage. Alexandar Georgiev is 3-2-2 with a 2.81 goals-against average and .901 save percentage.

Injury Report: Philip Chytil is out until early March, while Jacob Trouba is out until late March and Kaapo Kakko and Artemi Panarin are out indefinitely

The Bottom Line
What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet
Rating:
 

Boston will bounce back with a strong effort on Sunday following its embarrassing loss in the first game of this two-game series with the Rangers on Friday. The Bruins have won four of the last five played on New York’s home ice and six of the last seven overall against the Rangers. New York has lost four of the last five played on its home ice and 15 of the last 22 overall. Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak will spark the Bruins scoring revival on Sunday with heavy pressure on the Rangers blue line and in front of the New York goal crease. The Bruins will also use strong forechecking and be physical on the boards to slow down the Rangers rushes.

Prediction:
Boston Bruins -165

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Full-Game Total Pick
Rating:
 

Eight goals were scored in the first game between the two on Friday and that Trend will continue into Sunday’s matchup. The total has finished over in seven of the last 10 games the Bruins have played at Madison Square Garden. Overall, the total has finished over in four of Boston’s last five. New York has seen the total finish over in four of the last 5 games the Rangers have scored five or more goals in the previous game.

Prediction:
OVER 5.5