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Boston Bruins at St. Louis Blues Stanley Cup Finals Game 3 Preview

After splitting the first two games in Boston, the Bruins and the St. Louis Blues will play Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals at Enterprise Center on Saturday night. After a thrilling Game 2 overtime win, the Blues will be looking to carry the momentum into Game 3 at home, while the Bruins will look to regain the form that dominated the second and third periods of Game 1. The moneyline on Game 3 is St. Louis -115.

Bruins Look to Stay Hot on Road

The Boston Bruins come into Game 3 very comfortable playing on the road. They are 6-2 on the road in the 2019 postseason, including an elimination game in Toronto in the first round. They have won four in a row on the road, and eight of their last nine games overall. Boston will be without defenseman Matt Grzelcyk, who is in concussion protocol after a hit from Oskar Sundqvist in Game 2. Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy described Grzelcyk as “day to day,” but it seems unlikely that he will play until at least Game 5 Thursday night in Boston.

Goaltender Tuukka Rask was spectacular on Wednesday night in Game 2, stopping 34 of 37 shots. He continues his pace from the previous rounds, as he has stopped 51 of 56 shots in the first two games of the Finals for a save percentage of .911.

Blues Will Be Shorthanded

The St. Louis Blues showed their resilience yet again Wednesday night, as most pundits were not in their corner. It did not matter, however, as they pulled out a hard-fought 3-2 overtime winner. The win did not come without a cost, however. Forward Oskar Sundqvist, who has led the Blues in plus/minus rating in the playoffs, was suspended by the league for Game 3.

The suspension came after a hearing involving a hit he laid on Bruins defenseman Matt Grzelcyk that earned him a two-minute boarding penalty. Grzelcyk ended up in the hospital, in concussion protocol, and out of Game 3. Taking Sundqvist’s place is likely to be Zach Sanford, who has only played in three games in the postseason, although Blues coach Craig Berube would not confirm this.

The Blues have been led by Vladimir Tarasenko, who has scored a goal in each of his last four games. He has points in each of his last nine games. Goaltender Jordan Binnington has continued to shine. He allowed two early goals in Game 2, then shut the door to the Bruins for the remainder of the game. He has saved 55 of 60 shots faced in the finals for a save percentage of .917.

Prediction Time

This series has been so close that it is almost impossible to pick a winner in any given game. The Blues are going to be jacked, hosting their first Stanley Cup Finals game in 49 years. The Bruins want to regain the home-ice advantage. The Blues’ ability to lean on their opponents and hit them shift after shift is what wore down Winnipeg, Dallas, and San Jose. This may be happening here with Boston. Take the Blues in another nail-biter.

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