NHL Predictions: April 13 with Buffalo Sabres vs Boston Bruins

Buffalo Sabrs vs Boston Bruins
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\Welcome back to NHL Predictions, April 13th edition! Each day, the Last Word On Hockey team will break down every game and give our NHL predictions for each game. This is the first slate of NHL Predictions for April 13th, featuring the Buffalo Sabres vs Boston Bruins. Be sure to check out the other slates of games today.

NHL Predictions: Buffalo Sabres vs Boston Bruins

Buffalo Sabres vs Boston Bruins

Head-to-Head: Sabres 0 – 2 Bruins

Though the Buffalo Sabres and Boston Bruins have only played each other twice this season, both games have gone in Boston’s favour. Buffalo remains last in the division and league, and while the Bruins haven’t been at their best lately, they are still in playoff position. 

Yesterday’s trade deadline has had a significant effect on both teams’ lineups. The Sabres, as sellers, lost several players, whereas the Bruins as buyers, added to their roster. Buffalo and Boston actually traded with each other, with Boston receiving Taylor Hall and Curtis Lazar from the Sabres in exchange for Anders Bjork and a 2021 second-round pick. Ideally, Hall and Lazar will provide depth scoring for the Bruins, who have struggled to generate offence beyond the “Perfection Line”. It will be interesting to see how they perform against their former team.

Of course, the Sabres did win their most recent game while the Bruins lost theirs, but that victory was against the notoriously inconsistent Flyers. Boston’s loss, conversely, came at the hands of the division-leading Capitals. Overall, the Bruins are still significantly better than the Sabres and will only become stronger with the additions of Hall and Lazar.

Prediction: Bruins win, 5-1

Philadelphia Flyers vs Washington Capitals

Head-to-Head: Flyers 1 – 3 Capitals

The Washington Capitals enter this game with considerable momentum, having easily dispatched the Bruins on Sunday in an impressive 8-1 win. The Capitals scored up and down the lineup against Boston, with the Jakub VranaLars EllerT.J. Oshie line combining for six points. In contrast, the Philadelphia Flyers’ most recent game was a demoralizing loss to the Sabres that damaged their already-slim chances of making the playoffs. Though the Flyers have shown brief flashes of promise within the past week, they struggle to string together a solid 60-minute effort. The defence has improved since March, but the lapses that still occur have proved costly.

Aside from the initial loss, the Capitals have dominated in the head-to-head, winning all three of the teams’ most recent meetings. There’s no reason to believe they won’t do it again tonight against this downtrodden Flyers team.

Prediction: Capitals win, 4-2

New York Rangers vs New Jersey Devils

Head-to-Head: Rangers 2 – 2 Devils

Although the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils are tied in the head-to-head, the Rangers have recorded 6-1 and 6-3 wins in the teams’ two most recent meetings. New York has gone 5-3-2 over its last 10 games and has battled its way to fifth in the East. New Jersey sits at seventh, with an underwhelming 2-6-2 record in its last 10.

Notably, while the Rangers were fairly quiet at the trade deadline, the Devils were very active this past week. Trading Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac to the Islanders weakened the offence. The addition of former Capital Jonas Siegenthaler and the loss of Sami Vatanen and Dmitry Kulikov will force the Devils to shuffle their defensive pairings as well. Even under normal circumstances, the Rangers are a better team than the Devils – and now they also have the advantage of playing a team that is adjusting to an updated roster.

Prediction: Rangers win, 6-2

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