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Capitals vs. Bruins Game 1 NHL Playoff Free Picks | Preview

Washington Capitals vs Boston Bruins Pick

What many thought could be a matchup of Eastern Conference Finalists begins as a Round 1 series on Thursday night when the #2 seeded Boston Bruins host the #7 seeded Washington Capitals. Both teams had their own issues during the regular season but all those could be washed away as the new season begins. 

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Washington Capitals at Boston Bruins
When: 7:30 PM ET, Thursday, April 12, 2012
Where: TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Broadcast: CBC, NBCSN, RDS2, CSN-MA (HD), NESN (HD)
Capitals vs. Bruins Betting Lines from betonline.com
Spread: Bruins -1 ½ (+170)
Moneyline: Capitals +162: Bruins -178
Over/Under: 5 goals

Matchup | Preview 

Both the Caps and the Bruins enter game 1 on decent streaks, both having won two straight games with Washington going 6-2-2 down the stretch and Boston going 7-2-1 in their last 10 games.

Although there are plenty of stars that will take to the ice on Thursday, the biggest story line could be the injuries – the Capitals may be forced to start rookie Brayden Holtby in goal due to the injuries to Tomas Vokoun and Michal Neuvirth and the Bruins will be without Marc Savard and Nathan Horton – two very big parts of Boston’s Stanley Cup run last year.

Washington is playing perhaps their best hockey of the year going into Game 1 – Alex Ovechkin has 11 goals in his last 13 games and 11 points in his last 10, Alex Semin has recorded four points in three games and Nick Backstrom’s health is a huge boost to an offense that was 15th in the NHL this year. [ad-4437448]

Boston’s offense is deep and balanced. It should provide a good test for Brayden Holtby.

The Bruins are the only team in the NHL to boast six 20 goal scorers – no wonder they were 2nd in the league in goals for this season!

Betting Prediction: The Washington Capitals are formidable once again but in Game 1 the odds are clearly stacked against them. They were 23rd in the NHL this season on the road and there is some guy named Tim Thomas that they will have to beat often if they hope to get a jump on the Bruins.

Although the Caps won the season series 3-1 this season, Game 1 will belong to the Bruins.

Pick: Boston Bruins -178

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