The 2022 Stanley Cup Eastern Conference Finals are back Sunday, June 5, with Game 3 at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida, so we bring you the best Rangers vs. Lightning betting pick and odds.
New York is a couple of wins away from its first Stanley Cup Final appearance in eight years. The Rangers are listed as +140 road underdogs for Sunday’s clash, while the Lightning sit at -170 moneyline odds on MyBookie Sportsbook.
The Rangers shoot for another upset
The New York Rangers dismantled Tampa Bay 6-2 in the opener on the back of their defense. They allowed 39 shots toward Igor Shesterkin, who had another big night in the crease. The Rangers’ blue line did a much better job in Game 2 this past Friday, and New York outlasted Tampa Bay 3-2. They were listed as +110 home dogs on both occasions.
Filip Chytil led the way in the opening contest with a couple of goals, while Mika Zibanejad added one goal and an assist. Zibanejad scored a goal in Game 2, too, increasing his playoff tally to 22 points (nine goals and 13 assists). Adam Fox also has 22 points in the 2022 Stanley Cup (five goals and 17 assists) after accounting for a pair of dishes in Game 2.
Igor Shesterkin turned 37 shots aside in Game 1 and 29 in Game 2, improving to 10-5 this postseason. The 26-year-old goalie is 6-1 with a .949 save percentage over his last seven starts.
The Bolts are in big trouble
The Tampa Bay Lightning are down by two games for the first time this postseason. After surviving a seven-game drama in the Maple Leafs series, the two-time defending champions swept the Florida Panthers in the second round.
The Bolts opened the second game of the conference finals on a high note. After just 2:41 of play in the first period, Nikita Kucherov converted a power-play opportunity for his fifth goal of the postseason. It was a lone man-advantage situation for the Lightning on the night, and by the end of the first period, the Rangers had a 2-1 lead.
Tampa Bay trailed 3-1 early in the third following a scoreless second period, and with 2:02 left on the clock, Nicholas Paul’s third goal of the postseason made Game 2 interesting to watch. The Lightning outshot the Rangers 31-28 and took nine hits more than their rivals (32-23). But it wasn’t a good performance overall, and the Bolts failed to satisfy the odds.
- 3-6 in the last nine playoff games when listed as underdogs
- 6-2 in the last eight games overall
New York Rangers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Pick
The Rangers should slow down a bit on the road, while the Lightning have to play much better on both sides of the ice if they want to avoid a 3-0 hole. Andrei Vasilevskiy is a much better goaltender than he’s shown through the first two games, but Igor Shesterkin is the only reason why I’m not comfortable with my bet on the Lightning.
Tampa Bay is 17-1 in its last 18 playoff games following a loss. Hopefully, the Bolts will find a way to deal with Igor Shesterkin and the stout Rangers defense.
Pick: Take Tampa Bay Lightning at -170
I hit the under last Friday and also mentioned that a 5.5-goal line is a tricky one. But with Igor Shesterkin and Andrei Vasilevskiy between the pipes, going with the under is the only reasonable move.
Shesterkin has surrendered only 14 goals over his last eight appearances. On the other side, Vasilevskiy has allowed just three goals in that second-round sweep of the Florida Panthers. The under is 8-3 in the Rangers’ last 11 showings as underdogs, and it is 6-1 in the Bolts’ previous seven games overall.
Pick: Go under 5.5 goals at -120