After taking a 2-0 series lead, the New York Rangers have dropped three straight and are now facing elimination. The Tampa Bay Lightning took a commanding lead thanks to a late-period goal in Game 5. They now have a chance to stamp their place in the Stanley Cup Final for a third consecutive year. This is where you’ll find everything, including team win odds, the over/under, and point spreads.
New York Rangers (+155) vs Tampa Bay Lightning (-190)
The Lightning are the odds-on favourite to win Game 6 and eliminate the Rangers from a magnificent Cinderella run. They’ve been next to unstoppable at home and added momentum by taking the series lead on the road. Andrei Vasilevskiy started slowly in Games 1 and 2 but since has turned in a .956 save percentage in the last three games. He’ll be New York’s biggest obstacle tonight, as they’ll hope to score more than once for the first time since Game 3.
It’s hard to bet against Tampa Bay given their momentum coming into Game 6, but if one team can overcome this adversity, it’s the Rangers. They’ve already dealt with series deficits this year, overturning a 3-1 Pittsburgh Penguins series lead into a Game 7 upset. They also erased 2-0 and 3-2 series leads against the Carolina Hurricanes the following round. They are the controllers of their destiny once more but now face a well-seasoned, playoff-performing team.
It was expected that the goals would slow down somewhat and remain close to or under the 5.5 over/under prop. The Lightning got goals from unlikely sources in Mikhail Sergachev and Brandon Hagel, but that seems the be what drives the Lightning’s playoff success. In a series where both teams have done a decent job shutting down each other’s stars, the bottom-six players will be the x-factors in determining a winner.
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With that said, tonight’s game is a do-or-die situation, and the Rangers can’t afford to play passively. New York is at a disadvantage for line changes, but head coach Gerard Gallant has done a superb job with counterattacks. New York will need to be flying out of the gate and send a message with a goal in the first ten minutes. Count on this game to be a faster-paced meeting with the over (O 5, -145) being met.
Tonight’s game feels like it’ll be close in score, with the potential of reaching an overtime decision. For this reason, the Rangers taking Game 6 in extra time (+290) paired with the one-goal winning margin (+350) brings a $42 return on a $10 investment. You can count on the Rangers to take on a challenge and bring the heat to the Lightning in their barn, and a player like Mika Zibanejad is the difference-maker this team needs to show up.
Odds via Yahoo and BetMGM.
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