Florida Panthers (33-33-11) at Boston Bruins (41-30-6)
|Date & Time||Saturday April 1, 2017, 1:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Boston Bruins / Florida Panthers --- Over/Under:
NHL hockey comes to TD Garden when the Boston Bruins host the Florida Panthers on Saturday.
The Montreal Canadiens missed out on the postseason a year ago but not this season as a 6-2 victory over the Florida Panthers secured a spot with just five games remaining. The Canadiens still need to win to hold on to the top spot in the Atlantic Division but their fate is in their own hands. Brandon Gallagher paced the offensive explosion with a goal and a trio of helpers with Paul Byron adding a pair of goals. Phillip Danault, Max Pacioretty and Tomas Plekanec also lit the lamp for the Habs with Carey Price stopping 29 shots to pick up the win. The Panthers attack featured goals from Michael Matheson and Reilly Smith while Reto Berra recorded 27 saves in a losing effort. The banged up Panthers were eliminated from the postseason with the loss.
The Boston Bruins are no strangers to putting the puck behind opposing goalies but in the postseason, defense wins games. The Bruins showed us their potential at the defensive end of the ice Thursday with a 2-0 victory versus the visiting Dallas Stars. The win kept Boston ahead of the Tampa Bay Lightning by three points for the second Wild Card and kept them a single point behind the Toronto Maple Leafs for third in the Atlantic Division. The Bruins received goals off the sticks of Brad Marchand in the first with Marchand posting a helper on Torey Krug’s second period tally. A sharp Tuukka Rask brushed aside 27 shots for the Br0uins to record shutout number seven on the year. Antti Niemi absorbed the loss for the Stars with a 22 save performance not being enough.
The Panthers are 0-4 in their last 4 in the fourth game of a 4-in-6 situation and the Panthers are 0-5 in their last 5 vs. Eastern Conference while the Panthers are 0-4 in their last 4 road games. The Bruins are 6-0 in their last 6 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400 and the Bruins are 1-6 in their last 7 when their opponent allows 5 goals or more in their previous game while the Bruins are 5-1 in their last 6 games following a win. The Panthers are 1-10 in the last 11 meetings in Boston and the road team is 5-1 in the last 6 meetings while the Panthers are 5-23 in the last 28 meetings.
At this time of year I look for teams that have plenty of motivation and right now that is the Bruins pending goalies…