We preview the betting markets and serve up our NHL picks for tonight's Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals. WIth betting odds are tipped 2-1 in favor of the Lightning, find out why we believe that the Rangers are poised to pull off the upset at an underdog price.
New York Rangers Drop Game 3
The Eastern Conference Finals between the Rangers and Lightning is living up to expectations, serving up one of the most exciting contests of the NHL playoffs with decisive momentum swings. The way it's been going between these deserved finalists those momentum twists aren't done yet, surely.
Rangers opened the series with a 2-1 win at Madison Square Garden, coming through as the -150 home favorites for NHL bettors all while the UNDER cashed in total betting. In the second home game, however, the Rangers succumbed to a disappointing 6-2 loss to the Lightning, all while matched as the -150 favorites on the NHL betting odds board and totals trading at 4.5-points.
With the series shifting to Tampa Bay, the Rangers came close to stealing back home advantage only to succumb to a 6-5 loss in overtime. This time they were matched as the nominal +115 underdogs on the road in NHL betting markets and totals were trading at 5-points.
Lightning Up 2-1
Obviously, with the Lightning up 2-1 and a home game looming on the NHL betting card tonight, they'll look to capitalize and take the 3-1 series lead over the Rangers. As it is, odds makers fancy their chances as the -135 home favorites to pull off the feat with totals trading at 5-points.
The New York Rangers, however, strike an attractive pose as the road underdogs at +115 NHL odds to win outright. They came close to pulling off the feat on Wednesday night in a high-scoring showdown that saw them tie it 5-5 with less than two minutes left on the clock to send it into overtime. But that's the way the puck drops in sudden death and Lundqvist had made a spectacular stop right before Kucherov's goal that kept the Rangers alive for a little bit longer.
NHL Betting Verdict:
Given that the Lightning have the 2-1 edge going into game 4 and home advantage as well, it makes sense that they are the favorites on the NHL odds board. However, the Rangers are a side that can't be taken lightly and they have a resiliency that is second to none, already coming back once in a series in these playoffs to win outright (Against the Capitals they came back from a 1-3 deficit to win in game 7).
While they entered the NHL playoffs as the favorites to win outright, when they are down and seemingly out, they are at their most potent and dangerous. They came close to winning game 3 and that should send them into game 4 with measured optimism. Lundqvist has allowed 12 goals in the last two games and that is a bit concerning, but look for the Rangers to tighten up around him tonight. Place your NHL picks with confidence on the slight +115 NHL underdogs.
NHL Picks: Rangers +115; Under 5 at -105 at Bet365