NHL Picks: Series Price for Rangers vs. Penguins

David Lawrence

Thursday, May 1, 2014 3:02 PM GMT

The New York Rangers survived a seven-game series with the Philadelphia Flyers in Round 1. Now they’ll get a shot at the Pittsburgh Penguins, who labored with the Columbus Blue Jackets in their opener. Let’s take a closer look at how these teams matchup on the NHL odds.

The New York Rangers Can Win Because…
The Penguins are not as dominate as they used to be. Before, this would have the makings of a pretty one-sided series. After watching the Blue Jackets push the Penguins in the first round, the Rangers should feel pretty good about their chances. 

As per usual, the Rangers will have a huge edge in net. Henrik Lundqvist is one of the best goaltenders in the NHL whereas Marc-Andre Fleury is very shaky between the pipes. He allowed 18 goals in the opening round while posting a slapdash .908 save percentage. That’s why the Rangers are worth a shot for your NHL picks.


The Pittsburgh Penguins Can Win Because…
They dominate this series. The Penguins have won 10 of the last 13 meetings between the teams and the reasoning is quite simple. They have the better offense and the Rangers simply can’t keep up with their scoring. The Rangers prefer conservative, low-scoring affairs but the Pens have averaged 3.4 goals per game in the last 13 meetings. That’s more than the Rangers can keep up with.

As long as Fleury doesn’t have an epic meltdown, the Pens should win this series.


Outlook & Pick
Lundqvist is just 25-26 (25-17-9) in his career against the Pens with a respectable 2.46 GAA but a so-so .913 save percentage. He’s supposed to be the biggest edge that the Rangers have but clearly, he hasn’t been in previous meetings. Unless he can improve, the Rangers will have a tough time advancing. That’s why I’ll take the Pens to win this series with my NHL picks.

Pick: Penguins at WagerWeb