Sunday 5 PM ET
Free NHL Pick: Bruins +100
Best Line Offered: BetOnline
As we head into the last game before the Holiday break, the Boston Bruins and the Carolina Hurricanes appear to be two teams headed in opposite directions. Since starting their season 3-0-2 in their first 5 games, the Hurricanes are 8-15-5. Carolina has struggled to score, with just 85 goals heading into this tilt with the Bruins – who beat them 3-2 back on October 30 – and recently that had their owner Tom Dundon, swearing to never draft a defenseman in the first round while he’s the owner.
“We won’t be drafting defense in the first round as long as I’m here,’ Dundon told the Triangle Business Journal on December 13. “I’ve got to have more offense, I want to lose five to four, not two to one. If we lose five to four, at least I’ll have fun’.
Apparently, the Hurricanes now famous – or infamous for some – post-win celebrations at home games just aren’t enough fun for Dundon?
Well, Dundon, his team and their fans won’t be having fun Sunday during their game with the Bruins or doing a celebration afterwards because Boston is on the upswing. After missing 16 games and not playing since November 16, the Bruins best all around player Patrice Bergeron returned in yesterday’s win against the Nashville Predators, the B’s are expecting to also get their captain Zdeno Chara and fellow defenseman Kevan Miller back soon as well. The Bruins more than treaded water in their absence over the last month plus and now are poised to climb back into the top 3 Atlantic Division slots and challenge the Sabres, Maple Leafs and potentially even the Lightning if they can figure out their own scoring woes. This isn’t good news forthe Hurricanes or the rest of the Eastern Conference and on Sunday night in Carolina, the Bruins will play the role of Grinches and prevent Dundon from his coveted offense and his team and fans from some Christmas cheer. Take the Bruins ML and the under!
The Bruins are 20-16 against the spread and 7-12 on the road. Boston has scored 99 goals and allowed 91. They’re 11-22-2 on the over/under and 5-14-0 on the road. The B’s are 18-19 on the puck line and 8-11 on the road. David Pastrnak leads the team in goals with 22 lamplighters and points with 44. Brad Marchand leads the team in assists with 25 helpers.
The Hurricanes are 14-19 against the spread and 8-10 at home. Carolina has scored 85 goals and allowed 97. They’re 11-22-0 on the over/under and 5-10-0 at home. The Canes are 11-22 on the puck line and 7-11 at home. Sebastian Aho leads the team in goals (12) assists (22) and points with 34.
With Jaroslav Halak starting yesterday, Tuukka Rask will get the nod between the pipes for the Bruins. Rask is 8-7-0-2 with a 2.57 GAA and .915 save percentage.
Petr Mrazek is 5-7-0-2 with a 2.60 GAA and .897 save percentage. He will get the nod for the Canes.
For the Bruins, Chara (knee) and Miller (throat) and Jake DeBrusk (concussion) are day-to-day.
For the Hurricanes, Haydn Fleury (concussion) is day-to-day.