The Boston Bruins enter their Wednesday night tilt with the Colorado Avalanche as hefty -175 road favorites, showing bettors just how significant the injuries the Avs are dealing with are.
Colorado is missing bodies everywhere, including Nathan MacKinnon, who is out for four weeks, so it could be point night for the Bruins as the Avs have allowed 19 goals over their last four games.
Find out my best bet in my free NHL picks and predictions for Bruins vs. Avalanche.
Bruins vs Avalanche best odds
Bruins vs Avalanche picks and predictions
For my best bet, I’m heading straight to the Bruins’ point totals and settling on Charlie McAvoy Over 0.5 points at -130. It’s a great matchup for all of Boston's skaters, as the injuries the Avs are dealing with are extensive and nearly impossible to overcome.
Out for the defending champs are Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog, Josh Manson, Arrturi Lehkonen, Valeri Nichushkin, Evan Rodrigues, and Bowen Byram. That’s an extensive list and the reason why the last four Colorado opponents have totaled 19 goals, including Boston, who won 5-1 just a week ago.
With a great offensive matchup on deck, taking McAvoy at a decent price to record a point is a no-brainer. He has 12 points in his last 10 games and has recorded a point in seven of his last nine. He’s playing over 24 minutes a game and will get plenty of opportunities on the power play as the Avs have allowed six PP goals over their last 17 times shorthanded.
During Charlie McAvoy’s 16:08 of 5v5 TOI Saturday, 12:39 was logged when MacKinnon and the Avs' top line was on the ice.— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) December 4, 2022
In that 12:39, Boston held a 6-3 edge in high-danger scoring chances — and outscored Colorado, 2-0.
McAvoy had two assists in the meeting a week ago (one at 5-on-5 and the other on the power play) and considering guys like Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand are -200 to get a point or shorter, getting the time-on-ice leader and point-per-game blueliner at a decent price is the better value play here.
My best bet: Charlie McAvoy Over 0.5 points (-130)
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Bruins vs Avalanche moneyline analysis
Casual bettors might think they’re getting a deal with the Avalanche as +155 home dogs vs. the Bruins tonight but the litany of injuries for the home side is the reason bettors are piling on the Bruins tonight, even at altitude.
Boston opened as long as -165 as books already knew the extent of the injury to MacKinnon. That didn’t stop bettors from jumping on the Bruins, who are coming off their first home loss of the season and haven’t lost back-to-back games all year. That early action moved the line to Boston -175 by this afternoon and that seems to be where it will close.
It’s tough to support the Avs here, even at the price, and the sportsbooks know it as well. Colorado is missing two top-four defensemen as well as five of its top-six forwards. That’s a tough mountain to overcome and it showed in its last game which it was beaten 5-3 by the lowly Flyers, who were +164 home dogs.
Avalanche coach Jared Bednar on his team's rash of injuries: "This is probably as bad as I can remember. ... No one's gonna feel sorry for us."— Adam Kimelman (@NHLAdamK) December 6, 2022
Boston saw this team Colorado team (with MacKinnon) last week in a 5-1 win where the Bruins closed as -171 home faves. That would put tonight’s line as a 50-point adjustment thanks to the MacKinnon injury, which might seem like a lot but is pretty bang on for one of the best players in hockey. Artturi Lehkonen also started that game for Colorado but logged just five minutes of ice time before leaving due to injury.
Boston will also have the advantage in net with Linus Ullmark (14-1 SU, 1.91 GAA, and a 0.936 SV%) getting the nod. He’ll fave Alex Georgiev, who didn’t play Boston last week but took the loss vs. the Flyers on Monday. He’s allowed 13 goals over his last three starts.
The final blow comes with Boston’s special teams. The Bruins have scored a power-play goal in 10 straight games and have the second-best power play in hockey, behind the Avs who are missing most of their power-play skaters. The injuries have also decimated Colorado’s penalty kill, which has allowed seven goals over its last five games and killing penalties at 68% over that stretch.
There is a lot to like about the Bruins in this spot but it is all certainly priced in.
Bruins vs Avalanche Over/Under analysis
It’s tough to support an Over 6 tonight with the state of the Colorado offense, especially after it opened at 6.5. Boston held the Avs to one goal on 25 shots with MacKinnon and Lehkonen last week while the Jets blanked them with a stronger lineup five games ago.
This will be the first game that MacKinnon doesn’t start and the top-six Colorado forwards look more like a preseason lineup tonight. Facing the best goal-suppressing team in Boston (2.17 GAA) is making matters much worse for the home team.
Ullmark stopped 24 of 25 Colorado shots last week in the 5-1 Boston win and the netminder has allowed more than two goals just once over his last nine games. His .936 save percentage leads the league as well as his 14 victories.
Colorado’s team total is at 2.5 and I’d be happy to bet the Under at -115 with the lack of scoring talent the Avs will have on display tonight. This team has been making adjustments due to injuries all season but the MacKinnon injury is simply one they cannot overcome.
This could be a lopsided game and bettors should look at team totals instead of the full game total of 6 if they want to bet for or against goals. This total opened at 6.5 (-120 to the Under) but the value has been sucked dry as it currently sits at 6 (-120 to the Under).
Bruins vs Avalanche betting trend to know
The Bruins are 6-1 SU in their last seven games vs. a team with a winning record. Find more NHL betting trends for Bruins vs Avalanche.
Bruins vs Avalanche game info
|Location:||Ball Arena, Denver, CO|
|Date:||Wednesday, December 7, 2022|
|Puck drop:||9:00 p.m. ET|