Two teams looking to pick up their second wins of the season will square off on Tuesday night when the New Jersey Devils visit the New York Rangers.
The Devils and Rangers are two of the weaker teams in the newly arranged Eastern Division of the NHL that consists of all the Eastern seaboard teams like the Islanders, Sabres, Bruins and others.
The Devils have yet to find a stable goalie since the retirement of Martin Brodeur. Captain Bryce Salvador hasn’t looked or played like a captain since being promoted to one last season.
The Rangers are in the same boat, as they’re looking to replace a legendary goalie as well, and it’s harder than finding a franchise quarterback in football. The Rangers drafted Alex Lafreniere with the first overall pick and already have two All-Star-caliber forwards in Artemi Panarin and Mika Zibanejad.
If this team finds a goalie that doesn’t give up four or five goals a night, it could be scary in the East.
Needing Some Defense
The Devils are in third place in the East with three points after a win and a shootout loss to the Bruins for their first two-game series to start the season. Mackenzie Blackwood, the Devils’ starting goalie, gave up four goals in two games against the Bruins. That is very impressive considering the rate of goals being scored all over the NHL this season.
The Devils covered the spread in both games this season, coming in as the underdog in both contests. The Rangers scored five goals in two games and have shown to be inconsistent thus far this season.
The Devils’ young core of Jack Hughes and Nico Hirschier mixed with crafty veterans like PK Subban and Bryce Salvador should make for an interesting matchup against the Rangers.
Coming Off A Split
The Rangers split a two-game season-opening series against their cross-island rivals, the New York Islanders. The split is good for fifth place in the division with two points to form a three-way tie between the Islanders, Penguins and Rangers. The Rangers are 1-1 covering the spread this season.
The Rangers have yet to hit the over either as both of the games they played ended either 4-0 or 5-0. With Igor Shesterkin getting the start for Tuesday night’s game, the Rangers hope his day off and watching his backup record a shutout will wake him up.
Shesterkin gave up five goals in the season opener against the Islanders, so the Rangers hope he can keep them within one score while they figure out things on offense.
Odds and Pick
The Rangers are the favorites in this one, with a moneyline of -145, while the over/under has been set at 6.5.
The free pick of the night is the Devils to take this one. You should also go with the under 6.5.
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