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Boston Bruins vs. N.Y. Rangers Free Game 3 Pick | NHL Preview

Bruins vs Rangers NHL Spread/Handicapping

For the second straight postseason series, the New York Rangers return home in a, 0-2 hole needing to win just to keep their heads above water. Their second round opponent the Boston Bruins have been clicking on all cylinders ahead of Game 3 – the Rangers are in tough against a team that boasts depth up front, a ton of talent on defense and wealth of playoff experience on the roster.

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Boston Bruins (34-17-3-3) at NY Rangers (30-20-3-4)
When: 7:30 PM ET, Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Where: Madison Square Garden, New York, New York
Broadcast: RDS, TSN, NBCSN
Bruins lead series 2-0
Bruins vs. Rangers Betting Lines from betonline.com
Boston Bruins +1½ -260 +124 Ov 5 +112
New York Rangers -1½ +220 -137 Un 5 -123

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Rangers In Virtual “Must-Win” in Game 3 Versus Bruins

It is hard to imagine New York coming back in this series – but we said the same thing at this point of their series against Washington!

The Boston Bruins have already put eight goals past Henrik Lundqvist in the two games of the series – their offense has continued to shine during the playoffs.

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Brad Marchand leads the Bruins with four points on two goals and two assists in two games against the Rangers. Rookie Torey Krug has chipped in with two goals and an assist and both Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci have three assists so far in the series.

Unlike in their first round series, the Bruins are getting solid contributions from two lines – not just the Krejci, Lucic, Horton line. All said, the Bruins are plain scary on offense right now and also trot out their patented strong defense and goaltending for Game 3.

Boston will have some decisions to make ahead of Game 3. Dougie Hamilton, Torey Krug and Matt Bartkowski – all rookies have filled in admirably for injured veterans Andre Ference, Wade Redden and Dennis Seidenberg – the latter two could return to the lineup Tuesday. It doesn’t figure to matter wither way – the veterans will be a welcome addition but the youngsters have been playing more than adequately in their place. [ad-4437448]

While the problems for Boston are good ones, the ones for the Rangers are deep and are threatening to take them right out of the postseason. First is the play of Henrik Lundqvist who admitted that his shoulder may be giving him problems. Before Sunday, Lundqvist hadn’t allowed five goals in 151 consecutive games, dating to a 5-2 loss at Anaheim on March 9, 2011.

He also had never yielded more than three goals in any of his 31 previous games against the Bruins – evidence that something just isn’t right with New York’s best player.

Secondly there is the power play that has chugged on at an ugly 5.6 % in the playoffs. They were 0-for-5 with seven shots on goal Sunday. They are 0-for-8 against Boston and 2-for-36 in the playoffs – not good.

Rik Nash finally scored his first goal of the playoffs and they did generate a few odd man rushed in Game 2 and as John Tortarella said – they were much better than the 5-2 score suggested. Still, they made too many mistakes, they didn’t score nearly enough and fell victim to the relentless and opportunistic Bruins yet again.

Betting Prediction

A few trends to consider:

• Over is 6-2-2 in BOS last 10 overall.
• Under is 8-3-1 in BOS last 12 vs. Atlantic.
• NYR are 2-7 in their last 9 vs. Northeast.
• Over is 5-2-3 in NYR last 10 home games.
• NYR are 52-25 in their last 77 home games.
• BOS are 3-12 in the last 15 meetings in New York.

The Rangers seem, like most teams in the NHL, have serious issues with the speed and the depth of this Boston Bruins team. Sure Boston can look bad but when they are on they look like the most difficult team in the NHL to contend with. New York has owned the Bruins in recent meetings in the Big Apple but you just can’t look past the way Boston is playing in all areas of the game.

If there is a more complete team in the East, I’d like to see them.

Pick: Boston Bruins +124

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