6. Boston Bruins (-4)
The Boston Bruins are one of the scariest teams in this year’s playoffs. They are strong everywhere and have great depth. No matter how many injuries the Bruins seemed to pick up this year, they were able to rally and not miss a beat. The addition of Ryan Donato has already paid dividends. Since joining the team Donato has picked up two goals and two assists in four games. Once again, everyone’s least favorite player Brad Marchand is having a strong offensive season. He leads the team with 80 points while only playing in 60 games. As the playoffs begin, players like Marchand tend to excel. He will need to remain disciplined in order to make a positive impact.
One point back of the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Boston Bruins will be hungry for the top spot in the Atlantic division. A matchup against the New Jersey Devils or Florida Panthers would be easier than facing the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Boston Bruins have been playing a lot of close games recently; four of their last five have gone to overtime. They have only been able to win two of their last five games heading into Thursday’s big matchup. The Tampa Bay Lightning will be in town with first place on the line. Following that the Bruins will host the Florida Panthers before heading to Philadelphia to play the Flyers. The Bruins get another crack at the Tampa Bay Lightning this time in Tampa Bay before playing the Panthers in Florida. Then the Bruins will head home to close out the schedule to play the Ottawa Senators and Florida Panthers in Boston.