NHL Picks: Expect Capitals' Losing Streak To End Tonight vs. Bruins

Bruce Webster

Tuesday, January 5, 2016 2:12 PM GMT

The Washington Capitals visit the Boston Bruins at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. Don't miss our thorough NHL odds breakdown and get the best NHL picks.

Washington Capitals vs. Boston Bruins
Lines: Washington -108/ Boston -102
Total: 5.5

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Free NHL Pick: Washington -105
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

 

The NHL odds are out as the Washington Capitals (28-7-2-1 SU, 20-18 PL, 14-19-5 OU) come in off a tough 5-4 loss to Columbus and have now lost their last two games after they had won eight in a row, while the Boston Bruins(20-13-3-1 SU, 17-20 PL, 19-16-2 OU) have now lost four of their last five games following a 5-1 loss to the Canadiens in the Winter Classic on New Years Day. Washington has won the last four games in the series. 

 

Caps Lose Two In A Row For 1st Time This Season
The Washington Capitals have been the most consistent team this year and had been the only team left in the league that hadn’t lost two in a row, but that is now over. On Thursday night, Washington fell to Carolina by a score of 4-2 and they followed that up with a shocking 5-4 loss in Columbus on Saturday night for their first two game losing streak of the year. All teams go through slumps, but this team is so complete that their slumps won’t last that long. Braden Holtby took the loss and for just the second time this year he allowed more than three goals in a game. The loss broke his eight game winning streak, but he is still at 24-6 with a 1.93 GAA, while vs the Bruins he is 8-2 with a 1.52 GAA in his career.

T.j. Oshie (14th), Evgeny Kuznetsov (11th), Jason Chimera (11th) and Marcus Johansson (9th) all scored in the loss, with Kuznetsov and Johansson also adding assists. This is a pretty deep and balanced offensive team that has seven players with at least nine goals on the year. It all translates to Washington ranking 2nd in the league in scoring, putting up 3.1 gpg, while converting on 25.6% of their power play chances, which is 2nd in the league. On defense they check in at 2nd in goals allowed, giving up just 2.5 gpg, while allowing teams to convert on just 15.5% of their power play chances, which is 5th in the league.

 

Habs Blast Bruins In Winter Classic
Every year the NHL plays at least one game of outdoor hock, and on New Year’s Day the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens hooked up in one of those games at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. For Boston it was not a good New Year’s Day as they fell 5-1 to a Montreal team that had really been scuffling of late. The Bruins are now the team that is scuffling, as they have won just one of their last five games. Tuukka Rask took the loss and is now just 1-3 in his last four starts after he had gone a stretch where he had won five in a row. Rask is now 14-13 with a 2.51 GAA on the year, which includes a 7-9 mark with a 2.96 GAA at home, while vs the Caps in his career he is just 1-10 with a 3.01 GAA. 

The Bruins have scored 14 goals in their last six games, but seven of those goals came in a 7-3 win over Ottawa. Scoring the lone goal for Boston vs the Habs was Matt Beleskey, which was his 8th of the year. For the year, the Bruins are now 3rd in the league in scoring, putting up 3.1 gpg, while converting on 28.6% of their power play chances, which leads the league. On defense the Bruins come in at 20th in the league in goals allowed, giving up 2.7 gpg, but they have been solid on the penalty kill where they are 9th, allowing teams to convert on just 82.4% of their chances. 

 

Trends for Washington:
39-16 in their last 55 vs. the Eastern Conference
40-17 in their last 57 when their opponent allows five goals or more in their previous game

 

Trends for Boston:
1-9 in their last 10 games playing on three or more days rest
1-4 in their last vive when their opponent allows five goals or more in their previous game

 

Betting Analysis
Braden Holtby has been the best goalie in the league this year and he is off a bad game vs the Blue Jackets, so I will look for him to rebound in a strong way in this one vs a Boston team that really seems out of sorts right now. The Bruins have lost four of their last five games and it will not get easier for them as they will be taking on a Washington that is off its first two game losing streak of the year. They have not lost three in a row and they won’t here either. Back Washington with your NHL picks.

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