NHL Picks: Bet Lightning -105 against Rangers

Joe Catalano

Monday, November 17, 2014 3:58 PM UTC

Monday, Nov. 17, 2014 3:58 PM UTC

There's just one NHL game this Monday, but it's loaded with betting value as the Rangers (7-6-4) and top netminder Henrik Lundvist host the Eastern Conference 2nd place Tampa Bay Lightning (12-4-2).

Game-time is set for 7:00 pm ET at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

Tampa Bay Lightning players will be hearing the chants of "Potvin Sucks" from the blue seats high above and many of them are too young to know what it means. Rangers fans are die-hard; whether they're 8 years old or 80 years old.

5 Dimes Sportsbook lists NHL odds for this game basically even.  Both teams are -105 and the total for the game is listed at 5.5 goals.

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Starting Goalies
When approaching these games, we must always go to a site that lists the starting goalies and although it's unconfirmed, it appears that Henrik Lundvist will be in net for the New York Rangers while Ben Bishop will be between the pipes for the Lightning.

The Lightning are already in the New York Metropolitan area as they put an end to the New York Islanders 5 game winning streak with a 5-2 victory.

The Rangers are the definition of mediocrity lately as they're 2-2-4 in their last 8 games. This will be a major test for Lundvist (7-4-3, 2.51 GAA) as the Lightning are the top scoring team in the NHL. Tampa Bay has averaged 3.61 goals per game and Ben Bishop has been outstanding this season at 10-2-2, 2.34 GAA and has owned the Rangers for his career with a record of 5-0 with a 0.91 GAA. The Rangers will have their hands full tonight.


"Center" of Attention
The Lightning will be looking for center, Cedric Paquette, to stay hot as Paquette has scored 4 goals in 5 games. The center position is a strength for the Lightning and currently, Steven Stamkos has been unstoppable. Stamkos is logging more than 20 minutes of icetime per game and leads the team with 11 goals and 8 assists in 18 games played. Stamkos also has a point in 8 out of his last 9 games, therefore you know that he'll be a key player to watch tonight.

The tandem of Tyler Johnson and Valtteri Filppula have also been major producers as the two centers have dished out a combined 25 assists.

On the defensive end, Anton Stralman has been cold as of late, but still possess a very attractive +13 when he's on the ice to go along with 10 points. Without the great Lundvist, the Rangers would be an easy betting underdog in this game.


Fatherhood Agrees With Nash
Ever since he became a father earlier this season, New York center, Rick Nash has been on a major tear. He leads the Rangers with 12 goals and 7 assists. Nash has 2 goals and 4 assists in his last 5 games and has given top level teams such as Pittsburgh a fit with his ability to put the puck in the net even shorthanded. The Rangers will need Nash's offense in this game. He's been a big part of the offense with 15 shots on goal in his last 3 games and if anyone is to be effective against Ben Bishop, it would be Nash.

The Rangers will also need great play from 39 year old Martin St. Louis. St. Louis is coming off of a goal in the shootout loss to Pittsburgh and always seems to come up big in crucial situations. Along with St. Louis, centerman Derick Brassard has been a major part of the Rangers offense. Brassard plays exceptionally well at Madison Square Garden and he's another player to keep an eye on.


Tampa Bay has been unstoppable on offense and face possibly the best goalie in the game is Lundvist. Whe making my NHL pick I must say we should keep an eye for the Lightning offense to outplay the Rangers offense and that will be the difference in this game despite the greatness of Henrik Lundvist.

NHL Pick: Tampa Bay -105 at 5 Dimes

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