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Lightning Bruins Betting Predictions – Lightning Face Another Tough Test At Boston Saturday Afternoon

Posted by Don Melrose on 2/6/2013 6:23:51 PM

The Tampa Bay Lightning are off to a much better start this season than they were a year ago. Keeping it up against the Boston Bruins this Saturday will be a tough test. Two teams competing for their respective division leads will clash as the Lightning visit Boston Saturday afternoon, in what promises to be a physical affair. Tampa Bay has been a much grittier team early on and it has made a major difference, and the Bruins will provide a strong test of where they are at as a sports betting team to this point.

Tampa Bay Lightning @ Boston Bruins
Saturday February 9, 2013 – 1:00 PM ET
TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
NHL Sportsbook Line: Boston – 130

Hockey fans in Boston are used to their team starting fast, as the Bruins have made a run at the Northeast division title in each of the past three years including a Stanley Cup year. With a strong blend of toughness, talent, and goaltending, there may not be a more complete NHL team this year than Boston, which makes them the perfect opponent to see where the Lightning stand.

NHL Betting Preview: Tampa Bay Lightning

With five wins in six home games, Tampa Bay has thrived at home but have just one win through three road games so far. The Lightning were beaten up both on the scoresheet and in terms of the physical play in a 2-1 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday, and after playing in New Jersey on Thursday there will be a fatigue factor that plays in to this game. Steven Stamkos has once again led the way on offense with seven goals and 16 points through nine games, with Martin St. Louis on his wing. However, it’s a second line that features Vincent LeCavalier, Teddy Purcell, and Cory Conacher that has really stepped up in terms of the secondary scoring for a Tampa Bay team that leads the NHL in scoring early on.

NHL Betting Preview: Boston Bruins

The Bruins feel very comfortable rolling three lines with each of the top-three groupings capable of putting up goals while at the same time taking care of their defensive responsibilities. Boston earned a point in seven of its first eight games thanks in big part to its two-way play, including the second-ranked penalty kill in the NHL. That group will have its hands full against the Lightning’s top-ranked powerplay, where Tuukka Rask will need to step up in goal. Rask has posted a 2.10 goals against average through seven starts, taking over as the full-time No. 1 after Tim Thomas retired. David Krejci has led the way up front with seven points in eight games, and has a couple of very physical linemates in Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton to put up points and wear opponents down.

NHL Betting Preview: Outlook & Pick

After getting beaten up in Philadelphia on Tuesday, the Lightning traveled to New Jersey for another tough test Thursday, and will have an early wake up call with freezing temperatures outside of their hotel room in Boston on Saturday morning. It won’t get any easier against one of the most complete online betting teams in the NHL, especially if the Bruins are able to shut down Tampa Bay’s top-ranked powerplay.

NHL Betting Pick: Boston Bruins

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