Atlantic Division rivals continue their big time NHL betting series in the third round of the playoffs on Wednesday when the New York Rangers take on the New Jersey Devils in Game 2 of this clash.
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The bottom line for the Devils is that they were totally outclassed over the course of the first game of this series. Defensively, the team played well, blocking a number of shots and really trying to make life as easy as possible on Martin Brodeur, but on the other end of the ice, there were just 21 shots, many of which weren’t really of the utmost of quality. This was odd for a team that really did well on the enemy’s side of the ice against the Philadelphia Flyers for the duration of that series. But then again, there’s a big difference between going against Ilya Bryzgalov and Henrik Lundqvist. Travis Zajac and Ilya Kovalchuk both had their chances, as did Zach Parise and several of the other members of the New Jersey offense, but no one was able to put the biscuit in the basket at any point over the course of the first 60 minutes of this series.
The Rangers really had to grit it out in Game 1, but there was definitely no surprise to the fact that they were able to get the job done. They were the better of the two teams, and it felt like every chance that the Devils had to get back in the game, including a slew of power plays, the team would get down and dirty and get the job done, often without bothering Lundqvist in the pipes. The Swede pitched his second shutout of the postseason with that victory, though he only had to face 21 shots on target. One figures that that will change in Game 2, as the Devils could fire back with 40 shots in this one, so Lundqvist needs to be on his game in a big time way. Offensively, the man of the hour was Daniel Girardi. One of the lesser known Rangers, Girardi came up with arguably the biggest game of his career on Monday night, scoring a goal in the third period to break a scoreless deadline, and then he assisted on the second goal that really put the game away. Chris Kreider scored that one on the power play after he set up Girardi’s goal 11 minutes earlier. Artem Anisimov was able to finish matters off with an empty netter with less than two minutes to play.
New Jersey Devils @ New York Rangers Pick: Second verse, same as the first? There was clearly a big difference between these two teams in the first game of this series, and we think that finally, the Rangers are going to start playing with that swagger that nearly led them to the President’s Trophy this year.
Free Hockey Pick: New York Rangers -130
Aaron Ryan has been in the sportswriting biz since the late-90s, and he has worked side by side with some of the best and brightest in sports gambling. Always searching for the best trends in sports, Andrew uses his brilliant math mind to his advantage to beat the books.