Washington Capitals at Boston Bruins

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The Washington Capitals have won three straight and climbed to the top of the East division at 12-5-4 and 28 points. Washington’s most recent victory was 3-2 over the New Jersey Devils on Monday. Alex Ovechkin scored a tiebreaking goal in the second period for the Capitals and goalie Ilya Samsonov held the Devils scoreless the rest of the way. Washington has used strength in goal scoring with an average of 3.43 goals per game to offset a subpar blue Line and goaltending corps that is allowing an average of 3.19 goals per game.

Boston was caught and passed by Washington after the Bruins lost two straight. However, Boston bounced back on Sunday with a 4-1 victory over the New York Rangers and moved to within two points of the first-place Capitals. Boston is 12-5-2 with 26 points and tied for second place with the New York Rangers. Charlie McAvoy scored one goal and added one assist to lead the Bruins offensive attack on Sunday. Boston continues to have a strong blue line and goaltending tandem allowing an average of only 2.63 goals per game, while the Bruins are scoring an average of 3.00 goals per game.

Capital scoring in big numbers

Washington is scoring an average of 3.43 goals per game and during their current three-game winning streak have scored a combined 13 goals. The leading goal scorer for the Capitals is Nicklas Backstrom with 10. The Washington center is also leading the Capitals in assists with 15 and overall points with 25. The second leading goal scorers for Washington are Jacob Vrana, Tom Wilson and Alex Ovechkin with seven goals apiece. Washington has scored 16 power-play goals and the Capitals are scoring 29.1% of the time with the man advantage.

Washington has climbed to the top of the East division thanks to its scoring prowess, but the Capitals are giving up too much in their own end of the ice allowing opponents to average 3.19 goals-per-game, Vitek Vanecek is 9-4-3 with a 2.81 goals against average and .907 save percentage. However, Vanecek is allowed 47 goals in 17 appearances. The Capitals penalty kill unit has been successful 88.0% of the time

Injury Report: Evgeny Kuznetsov is questionable for Wednesday and Brian Pinho Is out indefinitely, while Michael Kempny is out until early May and Beck Malenstyn is out until early July.

Bruins Blue Line returns to form

The Boston Bruins held the New York Rangers to just one goal on Sunday, but Boston had given up a combined 13 goals in its previous two games losing 7-2 to the New York Islanders and 6-2 to the New York Rangers. However, the Boston blue line tightened up its defense around the goal crease and goaltender Tuukka Rask held the Rangers to just one goal on Sunday. Overall Boston is allowing an average of 2.63 goals per game Rask is 8-3-1 with a 2.71 goals-against average, .912 save percentage and has allowed 33 goals in 12 appearances. The Bruins have been successful 87.9% of the time when short-handed.

Boston is generating 3.00 goals per game and the power play unit is scoring 26.8% of the time. Boston’s leading goal scorer is Brad Marchand with 10 and the veteran center also leads Boston in assists with 13 and points with 23. The second-leading goal scorer for Boston is David Pastrnak with 9, while Patrice Bergeron has scored eight. Pastrnak has scored his nine goals in just 12 games. Boston has scored 15 power-play goals.

Injury Report: Jeremy Lauzon is out indefinitely for Boston, while Matt Grzelcyk, Ongrej Kase, David Krejci, Kevan Miller and Jarred Tinordi are all out indefinitely

The Bottom Line
What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet

Boston has a much better blue line and goaltenders as the Bruins are allowing an average of only 2.63 goals-per-game while Washington is giving up an average of 3.19 goals per game. Boston also plays well against better opponents as the Bruins have won each of the last four versus an opponent with a winning record. Overall the Bruins have won 11 of their last 16. Washington scores plenty of goals averaging 3.43 goals per game but will be facing a tough Bruins blue line. Washington has lost 15 of the last 22 following a victory.

Boston Bruins -145

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Full-Game Total Pick

Although both Boston and Washington have strong units in the attack zone, the total has finished under in 19 of the last 26 games between these two. Boston’s goaltending has returned to form as the Bruins allowed just one goal against the New York Rangers on Sunday and the total has finished under in 11 of Boston’s last 13 games when the Bruins play on two days rest