Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Boston Bruins NHL Second Round Playoff Predictions

The NHL Second Round Playoff Games have arrived as Pickswise will be handing out daily winning NHL picks starting on Thursday. With over a decade of combined winning experience, Pickswise is your number one NHL second round playoff resource to win. To kick off the NHL second round playoff games, the Columbus Blue Jackets and Boston Bruins from the Eastern Conference will go toe to toe. Enjoy these free NHL second round playoff predictions? Give @Pickswise a follow and get a first hand-look on his daily research.

Blue Jackets vs. Bruins Second Round Playoff Predictions

Game 1: Jackets vs. Bruins
Line: Bruins -145
Pickswise Expert Picks: Bruins ML / WIN

As expected, the Toronto Maple Leafs and Columbus Blue Jackets endured much different respective first-round series in the Eastern Conference playoffs. That’s not to say there weren’t any surprises.

A sweep was anticipated in Columbus vs. Tampa Bay, but it was the Blue Jackets who did the sweeping. Perhaps the only downside for them, however, is that they have not played a game since Tuesday, April 16. A possible lack of momentum won’t be a problem for the Bruins, who went the distance with Toronto. They never led that series until the final 4-3 margin and trailed 3-2 before dominating the last two contests by a combined 9-3 scoreline–including a 5-1 home rout in the decider on Tuesday. Home is where Boston will stay for this one, so it has to be feeling good about its chances. This team scored 19 goals in its four victories over the Maple Leafs, led by red-hot forward Brad Marchand (four goals and five assists during that series).

The Bruins also got three lamp-lighters from centers Patrice Bergeron and Charlie Coyle at Toronto’s expense. Columbus is 3-7 in its last 10 trips to Boston. The Bruins are 24-11 in their last 35 overall, 53-22 in their last 75 at home, and 18-6 in their last 24 playing on one day of rest. Additionally, the home team is 6-2 in the last eight head-to-head matchups between CLB and BOS. Expect BOSTON to come out of the gates blazing.

Game 2: Jackets vs. Bruins
Line: Bruins -145
Pickswise Expert Picks: Blue Jackets ML / WIN

Stop the presses! The Columbus Blue Jackets have actually lost a hockey game! Okay, it’s not that big of a surprise; the Blue Jackets were, after all, the underdog in Game 1 of this Eastern Conference semifinal series at the Boston Bruins on Thursday. But it was just Columbus’ first setback in the span of seven contests and second in its past 13. The Blue Jackets almost won on Thursday, too, but could not maintain a one-goal lead in the final five minutes of regulation and ended up falling 3-2 in overtime.

There is a lot to like about Columbus, as its red-hot form includes a famous four-game sweep of NHL-best Tampa Bay in the opening round. Center Pierre-Luc Dubois (27 goals, 34 assists during the regular season) scored a goal in Game 1, giving him two goals and two assists in the past two outings. Goalie Sergiy Bobrovsky limited the Lightning to eight goals in four games and he turned aside 34 of 37 shots in the opener against Boston. He is allowing an average of only two regulation goals per start during this postseason. The Blue Jackets are 6-1 in their last seven overall and 7-1 in their last eight on the road. Boston is 1-4 in its last five conference semifinal games. Don’t be surprised if COLUMBUS evens up this series.

Game 3: Jackets vs. Bruins
Line: Jackets -120
Pickswise Expert Picks: Blue Jackets ML / WIN
Tampa Bay perhaps made the mistake of underestimating the Columbus Blue Jackets in round one of the Eastern Conference playoffs. You can be sure the Boston Bruins aren’t going to be victimized by the same mentality. After all, they aren’t as good as the Lighting. Moreover, Columbus is now the hottest team in hockey–and it just stole home-ice advantage from Boston by winning Game 2 on Saturday. The Blue Jackets won seven of their last eight regular-season contests, swept the NHL-best Lightning, and then bounced back from an overtime loss in Game 1 at Boston (3-2) to prevail in double-overtime on Saturday (also 3-2). Forward Artemi Panarin has a nine-game point streak after scoring twice and adding an assist in Game 2.

Center Pierre-Luc Dubois has delivered two lamp-lighters and two assists in the past two outings. Goalie Sergiy Bobrovsky is allowing just two regulation goals per start during these Stanley Cup playoffs and he boasts an incredible .936 save percentage during his past five starts. Bruins center Patrice Bergeron has only one goal and two assists in the past seven games. Boston is 1-5 in its last six conference semifinal games. The Blue Jackets are 12-2 in their last 14 overall, 7-1 in their last eight at home, and 6-2 in their last eight playing on two days of rest. Additionally, the home team is 7-3 in the last 10 head-to-head matchups. Look for COLUMBUS to keep its momentum going.

Game 4: Jackets vs. Bruins
Line: Jackets -125
Pickswise Expert Picks: Bruins ML / WIN

The Boston Bruins’ showdown against Toronto in the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs was one of those series that was competitive in that it went the seven-game distances, but most of the individual game were boringly lopsided. Boston vs. the Columbus Blue Jackets, on other other hand, has all the makings of another seven-game affair with thrillers the entire way. Each of the first three contests were decided by just a single goal, including two in overtime. The Bruins took the opener 3-2 in overtime, lost by the same OT margin in their second home game, and then fell at Columbus via a 2-1 decision on Tuesday.

Despite the overall 2-1 deficit, Boston has arguably been the better team through three outings. It put 37 shots on goal in Game 3 (three more than the Blue Jackets), won 10 more faceoffs, and was victimized by the goal-post several times. The Bruins also won 13 more faceoffs than the Jackets in Game 2 and in the series opener they out-shot the visitors 37 to 22.

Eight different team members have at least five points during these playoffs, including Brad Marchand with nine and Charlie Coyle, David Pastrnak, and David Krejci with seven. Coyle has recorded at least one point in three of the past four contests and Krejci has found the box score in seven of the past eight. Goalie Tuukka Rask boasts a 2.22 goals-against average and .928 save percentage in 10 postseason starts. The Bruins are 25-12 in their last 37 overall, 4-1 in their last five on the road, and 19-7 in their last 26 playing on one day of rest. Columbus is 1-4 in its last five as a favorite in the playoffs. I’ve nailed the first three games of this series and I expect to be on the mark again by picking BOSTON to level up at 2-2.

Game 5: Jackets vs. Bruins
Line: Bruins -140
Pickswise Expert Picks: Bruins ML / WIN

The Columbus Blue Jackets aren’t used to losing. They dropped only one of their last eight regular-season games and then shockingly swept Tampa Bay in the first round of these playoffs. Now Columbus is finally facing some serious pressure, tied with the Boston Bruins at 2-2 through four contests in this series after falling at home 4-1 on Thursday. Thus the Bruins are taking plenty of momentum with them back to the TD Garden, where they were 29-9-3 during the regular season. That’s an especially dominant record when you consider that they were only 20-15-6 on the road.

In addition to an obvious home-ice advantage, Boston is a well-oiled machine on the ice right now. Goalie Tuukka Rask’s postseason goals-against average is at 2.11 and his save percentage is at a similarly impressive .933. Six different team members have contributed at least seven points during the playoffs, including Brad Marchand (10), David Pastrnak (nine), and both Patrice Bergeron and Charlie Coyle with five goals (Bergeron scored twice in Game 4). Meanwhile, the Blue Jackets have lit the lamp a total of just eight times through four contests against the Bruins. Boston is 25-12 in its last 37 overall and 20-7 in its last 27 playing on one day of rest. The home team is 8-3 in the last 11 head-to-head matchups. Go with the BRUINS to edge ahead in the series.

Game 6: Jackets vs. Bruins
Line: Jackets -120
Pickswise Expert Picks: Blue JacketsML / WIN

Are the Boston Bruins in line for another seven-game series? The script has flipped just a bit from round one, as the Bruins needed to force a decider against Toronto. Now they hope to avoid one, leading the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 heading into Game 6 in Columbus on Monday. Boston has momentum on the strength of two consecutive victories, but the Blue Jackets have home-ice advantage. That cannot be overlooked, as the Bruins were a modest 20-15-6 on the road during the regular season compared to a much more dominant 29-9-3 inside TD Garden.

But Columbus has to be respected in its own right. This is a team that swept Tampa Bay–by far the best team in the NHL–and is now going toe to toe with another formidable foe in Boston. Goalie Sergiy Bobrovsky boasts a .928 save percentage during these playoffs, forward Artemi Panarin has produced 11 postseason points, center Matt Duchene comes in with 10, defenseman Seth Jones registers with nine, and forward Cam Atkinson has eight. The Jackets are 5-1 within the friendly confines of Nationwide Arena during the playoffs Boston is 3-7 in its last 10 playoff games as an underdog and 1-4 in its last five at Columbus. The Blue Jackets are 13-4 in their last 17 overall, 8-2 in their last 10 at home, and 9-4 in their last 13 against teams with winning records. Also don’t disregard the fact that the home team is 9-4 in the last 13 head-to-head matchups between CLB and BOS. I’m 5-for-5 so far this series and I anticipate being 6-for-6 by picking COLUMBUS to force a Game 7.

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