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+110 +105 Sportsinteraction
Posted at 1:00 PM EST and are subject to change.
NHL Eastern Conference Finals
N.Y. Rangers +110 over Tampa Bay
8:00 PM EST. OT Included. We’ll reiterate that the wrong side is favored. The efficient market spoke in Game 1, got it wrong and it is doubling down here in Game 2, figuring the Lightning cannot go down 0-2 in a best of seven. News flash ---they can and they will. This price opened with New York taking back +105 and it has been hammered to the price you see here. If you bet Tampa at -125, you beat the closing line (+EV) so congrats on another bankroll killing strategy. Actually, two bankroll killing strategies are in play ---beating the closing line and “must win”.
Second verse, same as the first. A little bit louder…….Tampa is favored here because why? Because they beat Toronto and Florida in Rounds 1 and 2 respectively while the Rangers beat backup goaltenders x 2? That may be true but we pegged Florida as frauds all year long. Furthermore, the Panthers barely got by Washington (were actually fortunate to) and their goaltending was far shakier than anything the Rangers faced in Round 1 or 2. Beating the Maple Leafs was impressive, sort of, but Toronto had the Bolts down for the count three times. Furthermore, Andrei Vasilevksiy was less convincing through the opening games of the playoffs, stopping just 88.5% of shots through the first six games against the Leafs. He had a big and lucky Game 7 and Tampa escaped. They also lost Brayden Point, a key cog that they didn’t need against the defenseless Panthers.
The Lightning’s metrics are not strong. Opponents are finding ways to create chances against them. Tampa has given up 11 or more high-danger opportunities in five of its past eight games while outchancing opponents in just three of those contests. They beat Florida because Bob was awful, not because they outplayed them. Opponents have attempted 11 or more quality opportunities and 24 or more scoring chances in six of their last eight outings. The Bolts are banged up, they’re missing a massive key player, Vasilevksiy is not standing on his fucking head and they’ve played more games over the past three teams than any professional team on the planet (that we know of). Oh, and they’ve been worse on the road. Again, we ask, they’re favored here because why?
The Rangers have skilled forwards in spades. Absolute beasts that cannot be stopped. They’re averaging close to four goals a game and its power-play destroyed Carolina’s #1 ranking against the power-play. They have the superior goaltending and they have the superior defense. Jacob Trouba is playing outstanding. He continues to leave destruction on the opposition’s bodies. Ala Chris Pronger. Adam Fox and K’Andre Miller are logging big minutes, and are producing at an elite level. New York’s top 3 d-men blow away Tampa’s top 3.
Folks, don’t be influenced by the efficient market or talking heads. The Lightning are a great hockey team but they’re finished. They’re too banged up and burned out. Their secondary lines are makeshift, their defense is too slow and for the first time in a very long time, they don’t have the best goaltender in the series. Most importantly, there is absolutely no value in playing them as the road chalk. All that value belongs to the surging Rangers.
N.Y. Rangers +110 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.20)