NHL Betting News and Notes Saturday 5/5

NHL Betting News and Notes Saturday 5/5

Rangers at Capitals: What Bettors Need to Know
By Bill McBride
Covers.com

New York Rangers at Washington Capitals (-109, 5)

It wasn’t supposed to be this difficult for the Rangers. They were the East’s No. 1 seed and just missed out on the Presidents’ Trophy on the last night of the regular season.

To face a No. 8 seed in the first round and a No. 7 in the second was going to be a breeze, many assumed. Well, either New York isn’t as advertised or the Eastern Conference is tougher than most thought.

Nothing is coming easy for the Rangers. The Capitals are making sure of it.

Gaborik has a game

New York has depth and can throw plenty of scoring options at you. But without question, the Rangers will not win a Stanley Cup without the “A” game of forward Marian Gaborik. He's the star, whether he likes it or not, and he needs to start playing like it.

Perhaps he's on his way. His second goal of the postseason ended the Game 3 marathon Wednesday night and gave the Rangers a 2-1 win, and a 2-1 lead in the series.

It was clearly Gaborik's best effort of the postseason. Granted, it almost reached six full periods of play. But the veteran, who had 41 goals and 76 points in the regular season, also had an assist, a block and finished with seven shots on net.

That needs to keep up, especially the latter. Gaborik must keep firing shots. It helps his confidence and gives his linemates rebound opportunities.

Team tough

The Capitals' postseason run will go a long way toward diffusing the notion that this team isn't tough.

Win or lose in this series and beyond, coach Dale Hunter's crew has established itself as one difficult out. Not unlike Tampa Bay last year -- the Lightning infused the Left Wing Lock system under coach Guy Boucher, changed the team's identity, and frustrated teams all the way to the conference finals -- Washington has shed the "soft" label.

The Capitals have three forwards, Matt Hendricks (49), Alex Ovechkin (45) and Troy Brouwer (32), who have topped 30 hits this postseason and there are three more who have reached at least 20.

Washington has 94 minutes in penalties, led by forward Nicklas Backstrom (16), but Hunter has faith in his penalty-kill unit and the minutes really haven't cost the Caps yet.

The Rangers and Bruins, whom the Capitals eliminated in seven games in Round 1, can bang bodies around too. And, pound for pound, those two clubs have more talent than Washington. But this team has not gone away yet, and it has a lot to do with their fight.

Waiting on Dubinsky

New York forward Brandon Dubinsky, who had 10 goals and 34 points in the regular season, has been limited by a leg injury in the playoffs and his absence is evident. He didn't have the best statistical year of his career, but he’s among the Rangers' blue-collar forwards who do a little bit of everything.

He has just one point in seven playoff games and is a plus-2. He was seen walking with the aid of crutches earlier this week, but he’s with the team in Washington, so you never know when he might return. It is, after all, the playoffs and injury news is hazy.

Dubinsky had two shots on goal and two penalty minutes in New York’s 2-1 Game 7 win over Ottawa, but hasn’t seen the ice since.

History

New York has won four of its last five overall and seven of the last nine road games. Washington has won six of the last seven Saturday games, but has dropped seven of the last eight in Eastern Conference semifinal play. How’s this for playoff hockey: The Rangers are riding a nine-game overless streak (0-5-4).

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NHL: Streaks, Tips, Notes
Sportspic.com

New York Rangers at Washington Capitals

A lot of Online Betting sharps woke up exhausted on Thursday morning thanks to Game 3’s triple-overtime game between New York and Washington, which was pulled out by the Rangers on the road. Now, the Rangers smell blood and they’ll pounce on Saturday afternoon in the nation’s capital.

Why Bet On New York Rangers

The Rangers escaped the Game 3 marathon with a 2-1 win, and while Marian Gaborik was taking a little heat from different corners of the media for his play, he quieted critics with the triple-overtime winner to cap off a seven-shot performance. Ryan Callahan also got on the scoresheet, while Henrik Lundqvist stopped 45 of the 46 shots he faced, including all 17 during the three overtimes. The most important players for the Rangers may have been defensemen Ryan McDonagh and Dan Girardi, who had to get multiple stitches after taking a puck and a stick to the face on two separate occasions. McDonagh led players on both teams with 53:17 of ice time, and he and Girardi combined to block 14 shots in total, although it seemed like more. While Lundqvist gets most of the attention from NHL betting players and for good reason (he isn’t nominated for the Vezina and Hart Trophies for nothing), his defense has played incredible in front of him all season and this was a heroic performance from this duo, along with Marc Staal.

New York also won the giveaway battle as they turned the puck over just 10 times to 27 for the Capitals, and it is little things like those statistics that will turn a game in a team’s favor. The Rangers are a fundamentally sound team that doesn’t panic when the going gets rough, and even though they’ve scored a few more goals this season than in previous years, it’s their strength at the back that will carry them to their first Stanley Cup since 1994.

Why Bet On Washington Capitals

The Capitals fought valiantly, but they made a couple more mistakes than the Rangers and not just in the turnover battle; Gaborik was left wide open in front of Braden Holtby, who had another brilliant game with 47 saves and he is absolutely the last person on the Rangers you want to leave open right in front of your goalie. John Carlson notched his first goal of the playoffs for the Capitals, who had 59 hits to the Rangers’ 46, but that wasn’t enough. It was another close game for the Capitals as now, all 10 of their postseason games have been decided by two goals or less, and nine of them by a goal, so they have to be mentally fatigued and they’re doing it all with a young goalie in Holtby who has been unflappable for the most of the playoffs.

However, it’s still a little puzzling that Alex Ovechkin and Alex Semin aren’t getting more time on the ice, especially Semin, who was on the ice for 25:38 despite assisting on Carlson’s goal. Ovechkin had a fair amount with 35:14 and he may have regained a little more of Dale Hunter’s trust after scoring the winner in Game 2, but it was also a triple-overtime game and he could afford to put his star sniper out more since he had over 13 minutes in the previous game. Whatever Hunter’s plan is, at this point he needs to ride with his stars if the Capitals are going to make this a series, but with rumors that Hunter will return to junior hockey after this playoff run is over, he may not care what anyone thinks, which is admirable, but only if they win.

How It Will Play Out

Look for the NHL Betting odds to be close in this game either way, and the extra day of rest should make for a better outing in Game 4 because if these two had to play on Friday night, it could have been one of the ugliest games of the postseason. In particular, the defensemen on both teams were run into the ground and the goalies could surely stand a little more rest as well.

Both teams have actually be worn down with close games throughout the postseason, so at this point it’s all about mental strength and defense, and we’re giving the edge to the Rangers in both categories. It is always deflating to lose a multiple-overtime game and this will be a massive test for the Capitals, but the Rangers are simply the better team and they see an opportunity to go back up three games to one.

NHL Betting Picks: New York Rangers

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NHL Preview

Capitals @ Rangers (2-1) -- Teams basically played a doubleheader Wednesday, with Rangers winning with 5:11 left in third OT; total of 12 goals have scored so far in series. Caps have already played five OT games in playoffs, and lost three of last four home games. Washington killed 30 of 34 penalties so far in playoffs; Rangers are 2-14 on power play in last four games. Rangers lost four of last six games in this building, but have won three of four road games in playoffs this spring. New York won four of last five since being down 3-2 to Ottawa.

Armadillosports.com

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NY RANGERS (57-26-0-9, 123 pts.) at WASHINGTON (47-34-0-11, 105 pts.)

Top Trends for this game.
NY RANGERS are 57-34 ATS (+9.0 Units) in all games this season.
NY RANGERS are 29-19 ATS (+48.1 Units) in a road game where where the total is 5 or less over the last 2 seasons.
NY RANGERS are 12-5 ATS (+17.3 Units) in road games when playing with 2 days rest over the last 2 seasons.
NY RANGERS are 27-22 ATS (+54.0 Units) in road games when playing against a team with a winning record over the last 2 seasons.
WASHINGTON is 1-10 ATS (-11.3 Units) after 3 or more consecutive unders this season.
WASHINGTON is 17-25 ATS (-20.5 Units) after scoring 1 goal or less in their previous game over the last 2 seasons.
WASHINGTON is 20-24 ATS (-23.2 Units) in home games when playing against a team with a winning record over the last 2 seasons.
WASHINGTON is 8-15 ATS (-14.6 Units) in home games when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.

Head-to-Head Series History
WASHINGTON is 11-9-0 straight up against NY RANGERS over the last 3 seasons
8 of 15 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Under=+0.1 Units)


NY RANGERS vs. WASHINGTON
NY Rangers are 4-1 SU in their last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of the NY Rangers last 6 games
Washington is 4-2 SU in their last 6 games when playing at home against NY Rangers
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Washington's last 6 games when playing at home against NY Rangers


NY Rangers at Washington
NY Rangers: 12-5 SU away playijng with two days rest
Washington: 14-2 Under off a home loss

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