Blackhawks, Rangers to Get Defensive and Stay Under Total

Dana Lane

Wednesday, January 3, 2018 6:23 PM UTC

Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018 6:23 PM UTC

Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist has revenge on the mind after getting pulled the last time he faced the Blackhawks, but will that persuade bettors when pondering Wednesday night's NHL matchup?

NHL Wednesday: Blackhawks vs. Rangers

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Free NHL Pick: Under 5.5Best Line Offered: Pinnacle

Thankfully the Vancouver Canucks did their part by getting shut out by old friend Ryan Miller on Tuesday night. The Anaheim Ducks almost went over the total by themselves, but the scoring stopped with 12 minutes left in the third, allowing us to cash another ticket. That makes six straight wins and 2-0 to start 2018.

There are two games on Wednesday's NHL schedule, including an Original Six matchup to look at.

I think when there is the potential for fatigue, you try to go back to basics -- winning with defense. The Chicago Blackhawks have just finished a three-game trip to Western Canada, where they allowed 12 goals to add to their streak of five straight contests of allowing at least three goals.

Now the league thinks it’s a grand idea to send them back East for a game against the New York Rangers before heading home to face Vegas. Perhaps at the time, the NHL thought expansion Vegas would be an easy win, so that matchup would be a bit of a reward for Chicago in lieu of their brutal travel schedule. Not the case, considering Vegas has the second-best record in the league and already has beaten Chicago. Knowing this, I think Chicago will offer up a spectacular defensive effort against the Rangers and goalie Henrik Lundqvist, who was pulled in his first start against Chicago and surely has revenge in his heart.

I’m betting that both teams will play with a renewed focus on the defensive end, so we’re jumping on the under and the plus money.

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