Pittsburgh Penguins at Boston Bruins (+112, 6)THE STORY:
With the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference all sewn up, the Boston Bruins will try to build as much momentum as possible over the season’s final few games. The Bruins, 7-1-1 in their past nine, will look to avoid dropping a fifth straight at home against Pittsburgh when the Penguins visit Tuesday. Pittsburgh has sputtered down the stretch, dropping four of six, and is trying to hold off Philadelphia for fourth in the East and home ice in the first round.TV:
7:30 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network, ROOT Sports (Penguins), NESN (Bruins)ABOUT THE PENGUINS (48-25-6):
While their recent struggles have dashed any hopes of competing for the East’s top seed, Pittsburgh still has a lot to play for. The Penguins, who lost 6-4 to Philadelphia on Sunday, are one point ahead of the Flyers in the race for home ice in an anticipated first-round playoff series between the teams. Netminder Marc-Andre Fleury has excelled when facing the Bruins, posting a 6-2-0 record and 1.75 goals against average in his past eight starts.
ABOUT THE BRUINS (47-28-4):
Now that Boston secured a fifth consecutive playoff appearance under Claude Julien, the veteran coach said he is happy how his team is coming together. "If you look at the way we played for two months prior to these last couple of weeks, it's a big improvement,” he said. “And I think our guys are really doing a good job gearing up for the playoffs." Tim Thomas is only 2-3-2 with a 3.22 GAA in his last seven starts against Pittsburgh.TRENDS:
* Under is 6-0-1 in the last seven meetings in Boston.
* Penguins are 4-0 in the last four meetings in Boston.
* Under is 4-1 in the last five meetings.
* Penguins are 4-1 in the last five meetings.
* Road team is 7-1 in the last eight meetings.
1. Penguins forward Pascal Dupuis is riding a 14-game points streak, the longest mark in the NHL this season.
2. Bruins center David Krejci owns six points (three goals, three assists) his last four games.PREDICTION:
Penguins 3, Bruins 2 (OT)