By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj
Another short rest period and the Boston Bruins are right back at it Friday night with their first meeting of the 2019-2020 season against the Detroit Red Wings. The Bruins are coming off of their second regulation loss of the year, a 5-4 defeat at the hands of the Montreal Canadiens in the Bell Centre. As of November 7th, the B’s are now third in the overall league standings with an overall record of 11-2-2.
The Detroit Red Wings are going through big changes since their dominate run during the 1990s and 2000s, resulting in them missing the playoffs in each of the last three seasons. To start the new campaign, the Red Wings are 4-12-1 after playing 17 games, putting them tied for dead-last in the entire National Hockey League with a measly nine points.
BOS: Tuukka Rask 7-1-1 1.88 GAA .936 SV% Last Game: 26 Saves in 5-4 loss to MTL
DET: Jimmy Howard (Not Confirmed*) 2-8-0 3.99 GAA .887 SV% Last Game: 26 Saves in 5-1 loss vs NYR
*Goaltender may change prior to puck drop.
David Pastrnak became the first Boston Bruins player to become the NHL’s first 30-point scorer in a season since Bobby Orr (1974-75) in Tuesday’s loss to the Canadiens, a game where Pastrnak scored a single goal – extending his current point streak to 13 games. The 23-year-old has 15-15-30 numbers in fifteen games this season and has continued to be a true force for other teams to be wary of at any time. Pastrnak nearly created the game-tying goal in the dying seconds of the game but failed to score. Either way, he has been hot.
When your team has twelve losses in the first 17 games of a season, it is expected to not have any players completely dominating a game. For Detroit, forward Anthony Mantha is the number one scoring player on the roster right now, leading the team with 9-6-15 numbers in 17 games. In addition, Mantha is a -8 rating on the ice and has twelve penalty minutes thus far. The 20th-overall pick in the 2013 NHL Draft tallied one assist on the lone goal scored by the Wings in Wednesday’s loss to the Rangers.
Torey Krug has been the quarterback of the Bruins offensive strength on the blueline for the past few seasons but started the year slower than in the past. However, the 5-foot-9 defenceman has points in four consecutive games, bringing his season totals to 2-10-12 in 15 games played. Ten of those twelve points have come on Boston’s dangerous power-play.
As of November 7th, there is no confirmation of who gets the starting job for the Red Wings in the net on Friday night, but either way, they will not have a goalie with recent success playing. Both Jimmy Howard (2-8-0) and Jonathan Bernier (2-4-1) have losing records and average nearly four goals-against-per-game, (Howard – 3.99, Bernier – 3.51). Each one of the netminders has the same save percentage at .887%.
While Tuukka Rask’s numbers are fantastic, it is worth noting that Rask had a poor outing against the Canadiens, allowing five goals on 31 shots against with a few goals that he would most definitely like to have back. The Bruins, however, are not too concerned with Rask as they are giving him the start against the Wings on Friday. For a team that is 11-2-2, there is not a whole lot to be concerned about right now.
On the flip side, the entire Detroit offense is ice cold right now. In the past three games, the Wings have a combined two goals while allowing a total of fifteen goals against, including a 4-0 shutout loss to the Florida Panthers last Saturday in Florida. Detroit’s league-worst -33 goal differential on the season is a testament to that statement and is a reason for their very poor record.
- F Patrice Bergeron is one even-strength goal away (214) from passing Cam Neely (214) for sole possession of 6th-most even-strength goals in Red Wings history
Detroit Red Wings:
- F Frans Nielson is four assists away (296) from 300 career NHL assists
Bruins vs Red Wings Outlook:
Last season, the Boston Bruins lost the four-game season series against the Detroit Red Wings, finishing with a record of 1-2-1. Boston’s lone victory over the Wings was a devastating 8-2 win on home ice on October 13th, 2018. Detroit’s biggest win over Boston was a 6-3 win on March 31st.
Boston still has the best power-play percentage in the NHL, scoring at an impressive 31.4% while the Red Wings have the worst penalty-kill in the entire league at a 66.7% success rate. Detroit’s man-advantage has not been good either, scoring at a 12.7% rate – the 25th-best in the league. The Bruins’ penalty-kill is fifth in the National Hockey League at 86.7% so far this season. The Boston Bruins will have a clear advantage on paper across all specialty teams for Friday’s contest. It is also fair to note that Bruins forward Jake DeBrusk will not travel with the team to Detroit due to a lower-body injury that has not been disclosed further.
There are even sportsbooks that have odds published for the game. Honestly, it doesn’t matter which site you scroll through because the Bruins are clear favorites. Take a bit of time to go through this list of sports betting sites because most of them have updated odds. They’re sites that have a good reputation and are more trustworthy than others out there. There might be a few that haven’t released numbers for Friday games yet so just checking if that’s the case.
Puck drop for Friday’s game is scheduled for 7:30pm EST in the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan.