The Pittsburgh Penguins went up 2-1 in their first-round series against the New York Rangers on Saturday night with a 7-4 win. The final score doesn’t tell the whole story. After going up 4-1 in the first period, the Penguins let the Rangers back in the game in the second, tying it 4-4. A goal from Danton Heinen gave the Penguins a 5-4 lead before two empty-net goals sealed the win for Pitt. The Penguins can take commanding 3-1 lead in the series in Game 4, but will they? Let’s take a look.
All odds come courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
Rangers vs. Penguins: Game 4 prediction
This feels like a series that’s going to go the distance. Arguably the best goalie in the NHL was lit up in Game 3 and that sort of thing doesn’t happen twice in the playoffs. After dropping Game 1 4-3 in 3OT, the Rangers bounced back with an easy win in Game 2. Igor Shesterkin should bounce back and it isn’t like the Rangers aren’t scoring. Artemi Panarin is starting to heat up with two goals and four points in his past two games.
My main concern would be the third period of Game 3. After Heinen scored, the Penguins clamped down on D and their forecheck was a nightmare for New York. Pittsburgh got all its goals in that win from the non-Sidney Crosby lines. If guys like Evan Rodrigues, Brock McGinn and Jeff Carter are going to contribute, it’s going to be tough on the Rangers.
It’s still Louie Domingue in net for Pittsburgh and the Rangers are resilient. Look for them to tie the series on Monday night.
Pick: Rangers -110
There have been a total of 25 goals in three games in this series, so naturally we’re going to go with the under. It’s more of a testament to how Pittsburgh played in that third period and Shesterkin bouncing back. This feels like the Shesterkin game where he makes 40+ saves and shuts out Pittsburgh. It’s more of a gut feeling. We’re in the middle of the series and guys will start to tire a bit. Clearly both teams need to make adjustments in the defensive zone. The half-goal on the line would be nice, maybe you can find that. Maybe since the over is 3-0 we get that line up to 6.5 goals. Ultimately, this pick is banking on a Shesterkin standing on his head.
Pick: Under 6.0 (-105)
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