Confidently Lay the Juice with Lundqvist & the Rangers Over Lightning

David Lawrence

Thursday, May 28, 2015 11:10 AM GMT

The Tampa Bay Lightning have blown their 3-2 series edge and now have to find a way to win at Madison Square Garden…again. Can they cash on the NHL odds as a big dog?

The Tampa Bay Lightning Can Win Because…
They’ll have had two days off to rest, recover and get back to business. The Lightning did get blasted 7-3 in Game 6 but they also got smoked 5-1 in Game 4, yet bounced back with a 7-3 win in Game 5. They know what they need to do and everything will be just fine. This is a team that’s rebounded well this season as they are 16-5 after giving up four goals or more in their previous game and they are 13-6 after a loss of two or more. They’ll pick themselves up here.

Expect a much better defensive effort in this one. Yes, Ben Bishop did give up seven goals in Game 6 but when you start to do the math, not many of those goals were his fault. His blue liners were half asleep most of the night and were beaten to many loose pucks. If they can cut that down, we’ll see a very different game in Game 7, so keep this in mind when looking at the NHL betting odds.

The good news is that Tampa Bay has already played in a Game 7 this postseason and should be far more ready for this elimination game than they were for Game 6.

 

The New York Rangers Can Win Because…
This is their wheelhouse. Another elimination game and another victory. That was the story of Game 6 and it’s likely the story of Game 7. Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist is now 14-3 in his last 17 elimination games with a 1.39 GAA and a .956 save percentage. He also is 6-0 with a 1.13 GAA and a .965 save percentage in his last six Game 6 or Game 7 appearances. If he plays like that in Game 7, the Rangers are going to move on.

New York has gotten to Bishop in this series and they have to feel very confident about their chances. Rick Nash went off in Game 6, registering four points, and it’s hard to bet against the Rangers when he’s hot. Bishop now has an .889 save percentage in this series and while he did post a shutout in Game 5, he has also given up 15 goals combined through Games 3, 4 and 6.

The bottom line is the Rangers are at home with Lundqvist in net. Do you really want to bet against them?

Lundqvist will definitely make a difference in this matchup

Outlook
The Rangers are experienced in this role whereas Tampa Bay is not. New York has played a ton of elimination games over the last few years and they come out ahead more often than not. For Tampa Bay, this is still a young roster that mostly hasn’t ventured this deep into the playoffs. With the better goaltender and home-ice advantage, lay the juice with the Rangers for your NHL picks.

NHL Pick: Rangers -139 at 5Dimes.

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