Nashville Predators (18-18-4) at Boston Bruins (26-12-2)
|Date & Time||Thursday January 2, 2014, 7:00 PM (EST)|
|Location||Unknown Location Unknown Address|
The Line: Boston Bruins -200 / Nashville Predators +181 --- Over/Under: 5
|TV Channel||Stream NHL games all season on ESPN+. Start your 7-day FREE trial today!|
The Boston Bruins are in first place in the Atlantic Division stndings but on Thursday night they'll look to snap a two game losing streak when the Nashville Predators come to town. The Bruins had a poor showing on New Year's Eve when the New York Islanders were in town and rallied from a 3-1 deficit to take them down on their home ice. David Krejci opened the scoring with his ninth goal of the year and Patrice Bergeron and Daniel Paille scored 25 seconds apart in the second period to give the Bruins a two goal lead. But the Islanders tied it before the end of the frame, the second goal coming with just three seconds remaining, and followed it up with two more in the third. If was a poor showing for Tuukka Rask but one we should see him bounce back from next time out. Rask has had a very good season to this point, currently third in the NHL in wins and first in shutouts. Allowing nine goals over these two losses isn't something that we typically see from a Claude Julien coached club. Expect to see some adjustments made and the Bruins focusing more on their own end, especially against an opponent that they should be able to bottle up for most of the night.
The Nashville Predators come into Thursday night off two consecutive wins, incluing a 6-4 whitewashing of the Detroit Red Wings their last time out. Colin Wilson scored twice and Roman Josi sealed the victory with an empty net goal that put things out of reach. At 2.38 goals per game the Predators find themselves 23rd in the league in scoring but it hasn't been a problem for them the last few times out. With the way the Bruins have been playing defense they might be able to take advantage of some sloppy play but they're going to have to be opportunistic if they're going to take the Bruins down at the TD Garden. Marek Mazanec wasn't great in net but he did enough to get his club that win. It's still imperative that the Predators get back to their defense first mentality because they lack the offensive firepower to win track meets all the time. The Predators might be catching the Bruins at a good time but it's still going to be tough to come out with a win. With a way these teams are playing defense of late we might be getting a break with the total based on reputation.