NHL Picks: Take Rangers To Clip Detroit's Red Wings On Sunday

Dana Lane

Sunday, February 21, 2016 4:13 PM UTC

Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016 4:13 PM UTC

The Detroit Red Wings (29-20-10) will be playing the second of back to back games as they make their way to N.Y. to take on the Rangers (33-19-6). Get the best NHL picks here.

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Free NHL Pick: Rangers -165 
Best Line Offered: at William Hill


Red Wings vs. Rangers Betting Preview
The Wings have fallen into some poor defensive habits as of late.

I go back to the Boston Bruins game, last Sunday, a 6-5 victory, but with that came questions about their physicality and ability to hold a lead on nights when teams won't give them six goals to play with. They gave up too many chances and didn't win as many pick battles as you'd like when deciding who to bet on.

Then we have the goaltending battle. Petr Mrazek was pulled Thursday in Pittsburgh after giving up his fifth goal in a 6-3 loss to the Penguins and Jimmy Howard who essentially lost his starting job to Mrazek has been horrible. Going into the Ottawa game, Mrazek owned a 5.66 goals against average with a 8.15 goals against average in his last two outings. Against Ottawa, Detroit gave up far too much room for the Senators to skate. Even though Mrazek was solid against Ottawa, it still is difficult to back his inconsistency.

Howard may get the start versus New York. He is 0-5, with a 4.74 goals against average and a .852 save percentage in his last seven games. Howard has always had the tendency to allow bad goals at bad times because of his lack of focus. The combination of shaky defense and shaky goaltender is not what I want my money to back. 

I'm not a fan of teams that have to have a team meeting like the Wings did Friday. The Washington Capitals, Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, don't have team meetings. The reason for a get together is because there's a weakness that normal practice can't fix. If you read between the lines, it's usually based on a lack of effort. The Wings have now allowed 17 goals in their last four games suggesting they are simply not physical tough for teams to play. This is most noticeable when teams skate into the Wings defensive zone. They allow easy access when they should be more aggressive because that's the first chance for the defense to separate the puck from the forward which creates offensive chances the other way. 

Head Coach, Jeff Blashill, said he didn't like the teams level of intensity over the last couple of practices.


Betting Analysis & Pick
When handicapping this game, we realize this is not a great spot for Detroit, they have never been a solid NHL pick when they go on the road against a team who has a win percentage over .600. Over their last 51 games the Wings are 16-35 in that situation.

The Rangers are 47-19 when they face a team who scored two goals or less in the previous game. Meaning that teams who don't come in offensively efficient usually don't get healthy against the Rangers. 

The home team has won five straight in the series. If you're looking to bet the total, the 'Under' is 16-7-6 in the Rangers last 29 games. The NHL odds boards show that the Rangers are favored to win this game outright, and that is the route we're taking for one of our Sunday's NHL picks.

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