by OddsShark (@OddsShark)
Blues at Bruins | OddsShark Matchup Report
Opening NHL Odds: Bruins -160 Favorites
Despite falling 4-2 to St. Louis in Game 4 of the 2019 Stanley Cup Final as a -105 road underdog on Monday, Boston is still in control of this best-of-seven series that has become a best-of-three, with two more matchups left at home if needed. The Bruins have been outstanding off a loss this postseason, going 5-1 in six attempts and outscoring their opponents by a 26-12 margin in those games (25-10 in the wins).
The biggest concern for Boston heading into Game 5 on Thursday is the health of the team’s defense after captain Zdeno Chara suffered a reported broken jaw in Game 4 and did not return following 8:23 of ice time. Chara may not be the same player he was years ago, but his potential loss along with that of fellow defenseman Matt Grzelcyk (concussion), who has not played since the series opener, could test the depth of the Bruins as the series wears on.
The Blues are extremely physical and pushed the limits on the San Jose Sharks in the Western Conference Final, making them play without Joe Pavelski, Tomas Hertl and Erik Karlsson in the Game 6 clincher and winning three straight games after trailing that series 2-1. Boston hopes to avoid a repeat of that scenario here and must find a way to earn a victory at TD Garden, where St. Louis won Game 2 as a +150 road underdog on May 29.
The OVER is 3-1 in the series so far, according to the OddsShark NHL Database, although empty-net goals in the final minutes of Games 1 and 4 prevented the total from going UNDER each time.
The two goaltenders could be the key for their respective teams in Game 5, especially since neither of them has allowed less than two goals in the series as of yet.
Tuukka Rask of the Bruins needs to be sharper while Jordan Binnington of the Blues must avoid playing like a rookie and be more consistent. Binnington bounced back nicely in Game 4, and he has earned the victory in Game 5 on the road in two of the previous three rounds for St. Louis, including a 5-0 shutout at San Jose.
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