Free NHL Picks: High Pressure Will Lead Red Wings & Bruins To Score 'Over' 5 Goals

Dana Lane

Thursday, April 7, 2016 6:30 PM GMT

Both The Boston Bruins and Detriot Redwings teams are in desperation mode to secure their spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs. See my preview and NHL pick here.

Detroit Red Wings vs. Boston Bruins 
The Boston Bruins must win this game tonight to give themselves a shot of joining the postseason party while the Wings can secure their 25th season of making the playoffs with a win. Boston Trails Detroit by two points for the third automatic spot in the Atlantic with both teams having two games left. The Wings did help Boston out with their 3-0 win over the Flyers Wednesday keeping Boston tied for the last wild card spot. The problem still remains that Philadelphia has played one less game than the Bruins putting enormous emphasis on tonights match-up. Philadelphia host Toronto on Thursday while Boston finishes up with Ottawa. 

We are siding with the 'over' 5 as our NHL picks because we may see both Claude Julien or David Blashill do some uncharacteristic things in an attempt to bring their respective teams closer. For example, if there is a third period, two goal, deficit for either team we will definitely see one of these coaches pull their goaltender with a two or maybe three goal deficit. In a game that could turn into a game of empty goals I don't want to be any where near the 'under' in this one. 

You could question how sharp the Wings will be tonight after a tough Flyers game last night after a late 8:00 ET start then they took a red eye to Boston before settling into their hotel room at close to 3:00 am ET. They will not have a morning skate today. The potential of sloppy play could also lead to Bruin scoring opportunities early.  

 

Betting Analysis
My confidence in Tuukka Rask has swung back and forth as the year has progressed. I want to have confidence in him especially when I see 35 and 50 save efforts recently in big games against Florida but the truth is there has been more mediocre efforts especially since his defense has not played all that bad in front of him. Rask has faced less than 30 shots in 11 of his last 13 games while allowing three or more goals in 3 of his last 6 games. His save percentage of less than 92% is too low and his goals against of 2.57 is way to high to make Boston a serious contender. Bad for Rask, good for the 'over'. Former Bruins Coach Don Cherry said that Rask "Couldn't stop a beach ball". 

In front of Rask it's important to note that defensemen Dennis Seidenberg and forward Jimmy Hayes both missed practice Wednesday. The Bruins have recalled Max Talbot from Providence. 

From a NHL odds boards perspective the 'over' is 5-1-1 in the Wings last seven games while the Bruins are starting to start a small trend against teams with a winning record with A 3-0-1 mark.  

A quick note on the side, Detroit is just 1-6 in their last seven meetings against Boston and 0-5 in their last five games played at the garden. @DanaLaneSports 

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Free NHL Pick: Over 5 
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle