Penguins vs. Rangers (15 May)

Penguins vs. Rangers Game 7 Odds

Penguin Chance +120
Rangers Opportunity -145
Up and down 6.5 (+100/-120)
Time 19:00 ET
television TBS
Opportunity through BetMGM. Get the latest NHL Opportunities here.

Sidney Crosby, Tristan Jarry and Rickard Rakell will all set the clock for the Pittsburgh Penguins as their first-round playoff series against the New York Rangers climaxes on Sunday at Madison Square Garden.

Despite injuries to their top two goalkeepers, the Penguins built up a 3-1 draw lead and looked set to progress until Crosby crashed out of Game 5 with a reported concussion. Seizing the moment, the Rangers counterattacked. They have avoided elimination twice and set up a winner-takes-all Game 7.

There’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding the Penguin lineup, but here are what we’ve learned so far in this series and the best bets for Game 7.

Pittsburgh penguins

A two-time Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoff MVP, Crosby had stepped up his game once again before his injury. Simply put, he is the catalyst for Penguin’s success in this series.

After Crosby left Game 5 due to injury, his flustered teammates squandered a 2-0 lead and ended up losing 5-3.

Then, with a second chance to progress on Friday night, the game went pretty much the same: Rangers erased Pittsburgh’s 2-0 lead, the Penguins tied it and New York scored a late goal to keep playoff hopes alive.

Of course, Crosby’s history makes head injuries a cause for concern. It’s a positive sign that he’s rolling out on Friday and taking part in Saturday’s optional practice.

“He’s doing his best to get himself back and ready as soon as he can,” said coach Mike Sullivan. “We’ll see how it goes.”

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Then, there is Jarry who has been out for the past month because of a fracture in his leg. He had been on the ice all week, slowly increasing his workload. It’s certainly a lot to ask, but he could be ready to take the net on Sunday.

If he does, change will come just in time. Following Casey DeSmith’s injury in Game 1, Louis Domingue valiantly tried to support his team, but the results were not up to par. He is now at 0.898 save percentage and 3.65 goals-against average for a draw, with -3.4 goals saved above expected.

Jarry, of course, had a superb regular season and ended the year with an above-estimated 12.8 goals saved.

It’s no easy getting a goalkeeper into a stressful Game 7 after a month out, but the Penguins have been here before as they used multiple stoppers in their 2016 and 2017 Stanley Cup wins.

As for Rakell, he is close to recovering from the upper body injury that saw him crash out of Game 1. Brian Boyle was being evaluated on Saturday after suffering an unspecified injury in Game 6 and Brian Dumoulin has also missed the last five games with a lower stroke. body problems.

Averaging 4.33 goals per game, the Penguins have become the second-highest scoring team in the playoffs heading into Saturday’s game and trail only Colorado. And even in their defeat, the Penguins have done a good job of controlling possession. Pittsburgh leads all teams with an expected goals rate of 62.05% at 5-on-5.

However, a special team has become a concern. The Penguins have gone 0-for-6 with the men’s advantage in their last two games, while Rangers have gone 3-for-6 in power play and are now 5-for-15 in the series.

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New York Rangers

Rangers had the Penguins in the regular season, posting a 3-1-0 record and outscoring Pittsburgh 11-4. They are the blocking favorites heading into the draw and at -145 to win Game 7, the oddsmakers group the Blueshirts winning odds on Sunday at 59.18%.

New York has the home-ice advantage and crowd power in the World’s Most Famous Arena. New York also has the momentum and confidence built from successfully closing the last two games.

New York also has clicking power play and balanced score attacks. With nine points, Adam Fox reminds us why he is the winner of the 2021 Norris Trophy. Chris Kreider and Andrew Copp have four goals each. Mika Zibanejad picked the right time to rediscover his scoring touch when he slotted in his first two goals of the series by 76 seconds on Friday and abruptly turned Pittsburgh’s 2-0 lead to a 2-2 draw.

Rangers’ injury situation is also much easier. Tyler Motte’s quick penalty killer matched for the first time in Game 6 after being sidelined for more than a month with an upper body injury. That only leaves Barclay Goodrow on the sidelines.

And while Igor Shesterkin hasn’t delivered the same Hart Trophy-worthy performances in this series we saw in the regular season, he’s looked more like himself over the last two games. How many 79-save performances in Game 1 did he put out? Has he reset to the point where he can step up to steal Game 7?

Penguins vs. Rangers Pick

Rangers opened as -155 favorites to win Game 7. After the Crosby and Jarry sighting Saturday morning, that number dropped to -145 and even went as low as -140 in some locations.

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With so much uncertainty surrounding the status of these two key players, this might be a situation where you need to wait until the puck almost falls to get a lay of the land — especially if you believe in Pittsburgh’s 6-0 all-time record down the road in Game 7’s.

Given Crosby’s history, it’s tempting to believe that if he stepped in, he could be a game changer. But will that be enough to overcome Rangers’ lead?

New York is ahead of schedule in rebuilding. This playoff run is an unexpected bonus, which can help relieve some of the pressure that inevitably comes with a winner-take-all situation.

Rangers are 9-6 all-time in Game 7 and 6-of-7 winners since 2012. That includes a 2-1 second-round win over the Penguins in 2014, the year they went to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Look for the home team to win again on Sunday and Rangers to win their first playoff series since 2017.

Choose: Guard money line (-145); rotate to -155

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