Back to work in the NHL tonight with a pair of plays:

CAROLINA HURRICANES AT BOSTON BRUINS OCTOBER 18, 2011 4:05 PM PACIFIC

Boston really overachieved on a number of levels to win the Stanley Cup last season so they’re a team you should look to go against early this year. It’s the same concept in any sport—more often than not the defending champion is not only overvalued by the betting public but has a hard time regaining the intensity that got them there. The Bruins’ players have said as much publicly and already this season they’re showing signs of reverting into their usual form of the last three or four seasons. They don’t have a particularly strong home ice (at least statistically) and this has been a very competitive matchup with the last three games in the series being decided by a single goal. Bruins’ backup Tuukka Rask will get the start here though he played well in his only assignment so far this season. Carolina has a solid track record at Boston—since 1996 the Hurricanes are 23-13 +14.5 units on the Bruins home ice. This game is much more evenly matched than the price suggests.

Bet Carolina Hurricanes +145 over Boston Bruins

PHILADELPHIA FLYERS AT OTTAWA SENATORS OCTOBER 18, 2011 4:35 PM PACIFIC

Philadelphia’s goaltending has improved dramatically with Ilya Brzygalov in net, but he gets the night off here. Sergey Bobrovsky will be in net here and this game could be much more wide open than the Flyers have been used to so far this season. Flyers have gone Under in 3 of 4 games this season but all of those verdicts have come against ‘grinder’ teams (Boston, New Jersey, Los Angeles). Against a team that likes to play more wide open (Vancouver) the Canucks and Flyers combined for nine goals. Ottawa has decent offensive playmakers so there’s every reason to expect that this game will see quite a few goals scored. Three of the last four head to head have seen 6 or more goals scored and the Sens have gone Under only once this year.

Bet Philadelphia Flyers/Ottawa Senators Over 5′ -110

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