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Blues, Bruins Open Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden

On January 3 the St. Louis Blues were the worst team in the NHL, but tonight they open Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on the road against the Boston Bruins. Sportsbooks opened the Bruins as -150 home favorites with a total of 5.5.

Blues vs Bruins Game Center

Standout Stats

  • St. Louis went 30-10-5 SU in the regular season after January 3 to put itself in a position to end the second-longest Stanley Cup drought in the NHL. The Blues last played six days ago when they ousted the San Jose Sharks in Game 6 of the Western Conference final.
  • The Bruins, who swept the Carolina Hurricanes in the Eastern Conference final, haven’t played since May 16. Boston converted seven of 15 power-play opportunities vs the Hurricanes, boosting its efficiency with the man advantage to 34.0 percent (17-for-50) in the postseason.
  • Boston is riding a seven-game winning streak entering Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final and has an average winning margin of 2.7 goals in that span.
  • While some puck bettors might fade the Bruins due to the extended layoff, recent history shows it could actually be beneficial. Since 2013, teams coming off more than five days of rest are 16-11 in the following NHL playoff series.
  • While both teams possess stellar goaltenders, Tuukka Rask has been key to the Bruins’ postseason run. Rask has collected shutouts in each of his club’s last two series-clinching wins and is 12-5 SU with a 1.84 goals-against average and .942 save percentage.
  • Is another UNDER in store when the Bruins and Blues link up? The UNDER is 3-1 in the past four meetings between the clubs with an average combined score of 4.3 goals.

My Best Bet for Blues-Bruins

UNDER 5.5 goals

Largely due to the fantastic play of Rask, the Bruins have been UNDER machines in the 2019 playoffs. Boston has gone UNDER in seven of its last 10 contests with an average combined score of five goals.

I’m expecting this series to start slow offensively while the teams are feeling each other out and pick up as it goes on, so I’m banking on Game 1 going UNDER the 5.5-goal total.

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