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Scoring Chances Likely at a Premium in Hurricanes-Bruins Game 1

Sebastian Aho #20 of the Carolina Hurricanes celebrates with teammates on the bench Aho scored against the New York Rangers in the third period of Game Three of the Eastern Conference Qualification Round.

The Carolina Hurricanes and Boston Bruins kick off their opening-round Stanley Cup playoff series Wednesday with the teams headed in completely opposite directions. The Hurricanes come into the rescheduled opener with plenty of momentum after sweeping the Rangers in their qualification series, while the Bruins are struggling after dropping all three of their round-robin seeding games.

Carolina Hurricanes vs Boston Bruins
  • Date/Time: August 12, 11 a.m. ET
  • Arena: Scotiabank Arena
  • TV Coverage: FS-CR, NESN, NBCSN, SNET
  • Opening Odds: Bruins -152 | O/U 5.5 (Line History)
  • Hurricanes vs Bruins Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

The Bruins opened as -152 favorites ahead of Game 1, which was pushed back due to the Lightning-Blue Jackets quintuple-overtime game, but settled in around the -130 to -135 range at the majority of sportsbooks. The total opened at 5.5 and moved to 5 at some sportsbooks.

Carolina News & Notes

The Hurricanes had everything working in their impressive first-round sweep of the overwhelmed Rangers. The Carolina offense produced 11 goals, with Sebastian Aho leading the way with three goals and five assists in the series; he sits tied for second in postseason scoring to date, one point behind eliminated Edmonton Oilers superstar Connor McDavid.

But as good as the Hurricanes were on offense, they were even more efficient on the back end. Carolina limited the Rangers to just four goals in the three-game series, with goaltenders Petr Mrazek and James Reimer combining to post an impressive .955 save percentage. The Carolina penalty kill was particularly strong, allowing just one goal in 14 short-handed situations.

Boston News & Notes

The Bruins might physically be inside the NHL bubble, but it appears they left their offense back in Boston. The Bruins were the class of the league during the regular season with 44 victories and 100 points, but meekly tumbled down the standings after producing just four total goals in consecutive defeats to Philadelphia, Tampa Bay and Washington.

Not only were the Bruins one of only four teams to not produce a single power-play goal during the initial playoff round, they also got just one combined point from the talented trio of Patrice Bergeron, David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand. Pastrnak finished the regular season tied for the league lead with 48 goals but was held pointless with a minus-3 rating in three round-robin games.

Betting Pick: UNDER 5.5

The Hurricanes aren’t going to be able to run roughshod over the defensively brilliant Bruins – and Boston isn’t likely to turn around its offensive fortunes in this one. The UNDER is a strong play.

Shark Bites
  • Pastrnak’s 3-game point drought is his longest of the season.
  • Carolina has lost 6 consecutive meetings with Boston.
  • The UNDER is 7-1 in the Bruins’ last 8 games.