Ottawa Senators at Boston Bruins
Tied on 12 points yet the Bruins have played three games more, the Sens are trying to exploit their poor home form and earn an important two points. This is the first of five contests between them and the significance comes from the fact Montreal are already opening up an advantage at the top of the Atlantic Division. Ottawa have been closing out strong scoring 13 of their 25 goals in the final frame which gives them the second best record in the league coming back from conceding the initial tally.
I put them in very good shape as their only defeats in regulation have come against high flyers Nashville and Chicago by one goal margins too. Last season five of the ten leading plus/minus ratings were Bruins yet this year their leader in that department is often scratched defenceman Kevan Miller, aside from David Krejci I wouldn't say any of their forwards are excelling right now. I'm waiting for Boston to improve but right now the chance is there to exploit their indifferent results so back so back the Senators to roll out with the victory considering their long odds.
Colorado Avalanche at St Louis Blues
The Central Division's top two are now showing signs of life after slow starts to their respective campaigns. The Blues are slightly further along in the process notching three straight wins ousting a trio of strong playoff rivals in the process, Thursday's 2-0 success over Anaheim the highlight particularly for goalie Jake Allen. There's been at least a point in the last five for Colorado yet only two wins, it was always going to be difficult recreating their success of 2013/14 though conclusive home wins over Vancouver and the NY Islanders shows they are settling in.
Nathan MacKinnon waited a long time for his first goal of the season but a second followed seven minutes later to ease the pressure on his still young shoulders and more are surely to follow so look out for him to score tonight. Big names captain David Backes are day to day injury checkups for the Blues, one man who won't be taking to the ice tonight though is former Av Paul Stastny. With odds heavily favouring a home win I like the chances of Colorado at least extending their point streak with the tie at 3.95.
Best Bet: Ottawa Senators to win at 3.60.