Archive for May, 2011

Tampa Bay Lightning Will Take On Boston Bruins On Saturday

May 12, 2011

Boston BruinsOn Saturday night when the Tampa Bay Lightning travel to Boston to battle against the Boston Bruins, the Eastern Conference Finals will finally get under way.

Following their respective second round sweeps of the Washington Capitals and Philadelphia Flyers, both teams have had an extended layoff. While Boston has been waiting since May 6th, Tampa has been off since May 4th. When the Conference Finals begin, with these extended layoffs both teams figure to be fresh and well rested.

Winning four of the six games the two teams played against each other, Boston won the season series against Tampa Bay. On December 2nd, 2010, actually, Boston won the last three match ups including an 8-1 romp in Boston. This playoff match up figures to be a competitive battle as both Tampa and Boston are getting great play from their top players, while Boston may have won the season series.

In online free picks, the over/under total is 5.5 and the Bruins are a -145 moneyline favorite.

Both Boston and Tampa Bay have gotten excellent play from their net minders as experts always say the goalie is the most important player come playoff time.

As both Tim Thomas and Dwayne Roloson lead the league in playoff save percentage, making it even more difficult to predict the winner of this series, they have played exceptionally well in goal for Boston and Tampa. On this series it appears that the special team’s play of both clubs will have a major impact.

While Tampa Bay has the second best penalty kill unit, currently, Boston is ranked tenth on the penalty kill in the playoffs. While Boston has struggled through the first two rounds only scoring two power play goals in thirty seven chances, good for the fourteenth best ranking in the playoffs, the power play unit seems to favor Tampa Bay as well, as the Lightning rank third in that category.

Tampa Bay could be heading to the Stanley Cup Finals representing the Eastern Conference, if these trends continue.

Boston Celtics Will Take On Miami Heat On Saturday

May 5, 2011

Miami HeatOn Saturday, the Boston Celtics will host the Miami Heat on their home court. This series may be a sweep by the Heat otherwise it is critical that they make a statement.

In NBA betting odds, Boston is a 3-point favorite.

In Game 2, the Boston Celtics have had no answer for two of the Heat’s big three. While Dwyane Wade stepped up and scored 28 points and eight rebounds in the decisive 102-91 victory, LeBron James tallied 35 points and seven rebounds.

In this game, the Celtics were beaten on the boards and from the outside. Ray Allen scored a pitiful seven total points in 34 minutes as he was only one for two from behind the three point arc. Team leader Rajon Rondo led all Celtics scorers with 20 points as Paul Pierce only scored 13 points in this game.

They will have to focus on stepping up their defense on James and Wade along the perimeter and make someone else beat them with the Celtics coming home.

The Heat also had the edge in the battle of the bench players. Joel Anthony was a key body on the floor for the Heat in Game 2 although he did not score many points. It will be a long game for the older Celtics if he can be a force in Game 3.

The simple question coming into Game 3 is, Will the Celtics be able to use the extra day off to get healthy and take a stand in Game 3? Even though they will need to find their legs or this series will effectively be over in four or five games, they will have the home court advantage.