You’re not going to find two teams that have been more disappointing this year than the New York Rangers and the Philadelphia Flyers in NHL betting action. The two are both in dire need of a win at the moment, and they’ll meet on Tuesday night at the Wells Fargo Center.
Head Coach John Tortorella is clearly on the hot seat at the moment, and he is going to need to make sure that he gets this team into the playoffs to have a shot of maintaining his job into next season. Heck, just getting to that point would be quite the accomplishment right now though, as the Rangers have been a total mess. Now, they’re playing without one of their better defensemen, D Marc Staal, who took a puck to the eye three weeks ago and is still missing from the fold. RW Rick Nash has been solid all season long, but the rest of this offense has been atrocious. The Rangers haven’t scored more than three goals in a game in two and a half weeks, and that’s not going to cut it here in the Atlantic Division, where there are some teams that can really put the biscuit in the basket.
If you thought that Tortorella was in some trouble though, you haven’t seen anything. The buzzards are flying around Head Coach Peter Laviolette for the Flyers as well in spite of the fact that he had the team in the Stanley Cup Finals just two seasons ago. The team just had five straight days off, but the first thing that it did when it got back on the ice was lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Granted, there’s no shame in losing to the Pens, especially in overtime, and most certainly especially thanks to the run that they have been on, but time is clearly short right now in the City of Brotherly Love. Remember that the Flyers aren’t just not in the playoffs right now, and they aren’t just five points back of the Rangers for that last postseason slot in the conference. They’re also three points behind the New York Islanders. The Isles have routinely been pulling up the rear in the Atlantic Division, and for any of the four big boys to finish below them in the Atlantic would be a travesty and certain grounds for dismissal of that coach. That’s why Laviolette is really on the hot seat at the moment.
Yuck. This isn’t the greatest game in the world to try to handicap, as we have a lousy offense going against a team that has routinely had shoddy net minding. However, the Flyers are back at home for the first time in over a week, and the urgency is clearly going to be there to get some points. Philly didn’t play that badly against the Pens on the road on Sunday, and it should get the two points more often than not in this one against the Rangers at home.
New York Rangers @ Philadelphia Flyers Pick: Philadelphia Flyers -109