NHL Betting: Philadelphia Flyers at Boston Bruins

By: Adam Markowitz | Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Philadelphia Flyers and the Boston Bruins have a heck of a lot of history between them. The Bruins are making their 66th appearance in the Stanley Cup playoffs and have five titles to their credit, while the Flyers are here for the 43rd time in the postseason and have a pair of Stanley Cups on their mantle.

Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette is already all over his team in the media, stating, "We are going to win a game (in Boston)," immediately after his team suffered a second straight home loss at Wells Fargo Arena courtesy of the Game 2 overtime winner by Peter Krejci of the Bruins.

History definitely isn't on the side of the Flyers right now either. They are only 27-50-11 all-time playing on the road in Beantown, and they have been outscored by almost 70 goals in those games.

They've got some major injury issues to tend to as well. Backup goalie Michael Leighton, who was the man that came off of the bench last year in this postseason series, has a lower body injury and is unlikely to be able to go on Wednesday night. This wouldn't normally be that much of a problem, save for the fact that Brian Boucher had to leave the game on Monday with a hand injury.

He did come back and is expected to play in Game 3, but any tweak to a goaltender is never a good thing.

On top of that, Andreas Nodl, who hasn't played since Game 2 against the Buffalo Sabres, isn't certain for Game 3, nor are Jeff Carter and Chris Pronger, both of whom missed the second game of this series.

However, if Philly can sleep easily about one thing, it is definitely knowing how to win games when its back is against the wall. The Flyers could've just laid down and been trampled by Buffalo after getting shut out twice in the first four games of that series, but they clawed back and were able to take the set in seven games.

Last year, same deal. Philly was behind 3-0 in the series and changed goalies to Leighton from Boucher and went on a tear, winning four straight to win the series with Boston. The Flyers went on to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Boston has gotten great play out of the aforementioned Krejci in this series. The leading scorer for the Bruins this year only had one goal and didn't have an assist in seven games against the Montreal Canadiens, but he has scored three times and has two helpers already in this series against the Flyers.

There still seems to be something just a tad bit wrong with Tim Thomas right now. Sure, there is no shame in having a 2.25 GAA this time of year, but goaltenders usually improve their numbers from the regular season in the playoffs. Thomas still needs to improve, as five goals allowed in the first three and a half periods of hockey in this series clearly wasn't good enough.

However, he stopped the final 46 shots that he faced on Monday night and was a pillar in the posts to help lead the boys from Beantown to victory.

The Bruins, now comfortable favorites for the second year in a row on the Stanley Cup betting lines to make it to the Eastern Conference Finals, are minus 140 chalk for Game 3 (4:00 p.m. PT). The 'over/under' is set at 5 ½, with the 'over' priced at plus 120.

 
 
 
 
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