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Odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook.
|New York Rangers||+1.5
|Tampa Bay Lightning||-1.5
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The Tampa Bay Lightning will attempt to tie up this Eastern Conference series with a win at home. The Lightning were destroyed in Game One at Madison Square Garden 6-2. Flip Chytil led the New York scoring attack with two goals. Tampa Bay kept it a lot closer in Game Two but lost 3-2. The Lightning scored the first goal, but the Rangers took the lead late in the First Period and never looked back. Tampa turned the tables in Game Three and pulled out a 3-2 victory behind an Ondrej Palat goal with 42 seconds left.
The New York Rangers have hit the gas in the Playoffs. They had a strong regular season but have been even better in the postseason. They beat the Pittsburgh Penguins in seven games in the First Round and the Carolina Hurricanes in seven games in the Second Round.
The Rangers have seen Playoff success not in part to only one player but in part to a handful of players. Those players are Mika Zibanejad, Adam Fox, Chris Kreider, and Artemi Panarin. Mika Zibanejad has been a scoring machine and has 24 points in 17 games; ten of those 24 points have come from goals. Adam Fox is only one point behind Zibanejad, but almost 80% of his points have come on assists. Fox has 18 assists in 17 games and plays over 26 minutes a game. He is often on the ice with Chris Kreider. Kreider is scoring on over 22% of his shots and has contributed ten of New York’s 59 goal Playoff goals. Finally, we have Artemi Panarin. Panarin is playing over 20 minutes a game and has thrown in five goals and ten assists in that time. His passing has been efficient, but his shooting could use some work. He is only scoring on 11.6% of his shots.
Goaltender Igor Shesterkin has gotten the nod in almost all of the Rangers’ Playoff battles and not disappointed. Shesterkin has a save percentage of .930 and is only giving up 2.62 goals per game.
The Tampa Bay Lightning are making another deep Playoff run for the fourth time in five seasons. Their veteran presence has proven to be invaluable once again.
On paper, the Lightning are less talented than the Rangers. They are older and have a weaker offense. However, that does not matter in the Playoffs. Tampa Bay’s experience has brought them this far and will keep them going. Veterans Steven Stamkos and Victor Hedman have taken charge, and it has yielded positive results.
Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy has been instrumental in this Lightning Playoff run. He is only giving up 2.54 goals per game and has a save percentage of .922.
The Lightning are playing at home and coming off a Game Three Win, so they will win Game Four.
|New York Rangers||Head-to-Head||Tampa Bay Lightning|
|Gerald Gallant||Head Coach||Jon Cooper|
|52-24-6 (2nd in Metropolitan Division)||Standing||51-23-8 (3rd in Atlantic Division)|
|Mika Zibanejad (24)||Points||Nikita Kucherov (20)|
|Mika Zibanejad (10)||Goals||Nikita Kucherov (6)|
|Adam Fox (18)||Assists||Nikita Kucherov (14)|
|Ryan Lindgren (9)||+/-||Ondrej Palat (4)|
|Mika Zibanejad (3.24)||Shots (Per Game)||Nikita Kucherov (3.64)|
The New York Rangers are on the road and the underdogs. They need to cancel that out by winning the First Period and scoring power-play goals.
New York was held scoreless in the First Period of Game Three. This is not the main reason they lost the game, but it did not help. The Rangers have to lead when they enter the locker room during the first intermission. That is the only they will shut up the home crowd.
The Rangers have been averaging three power-plays a game and are converting almost ⅓ of them. They have to keep drawing penalties because they will score with the man advantage.
The Lightning are favored to win but will only do so if they score the first goal and slow down Mika Zibanejad.
The Lightning have momentum from their Game Three victory. They need to push that momentum and score the first goal. If they do, they will tie up this series.
Mika Zibanejad has been a machine in this series. When he is not scoring, he is creating opportunities for his teammates. The Lightning defenseman need to make him a non-factor in this game.
Everyone knows Adam Fox can pass, but the real challenge will come on defense. The 24-year-old from Jericho, New York, is the Ranger’s top defenseman and will need to lead New York’s defense against this tough Lightning offense.
Ondrej Palat must be on cloud nine right now. The veteran winger scored the game-winning goal in Game Three with 42 seconds left. That goal swung the momentum Tampa Bay’s way.
Palat has to be aggressive in this game and look for his shot. He is not the Lightning’s top offensive player, so the Rangers will not pay much attention to him.
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|New York Rangers vs Tampa Bay Lightning Information|
|What||New York Rangers vs Tampa Bay Lightning|
|Where||Amalie Arena, Tampa, Florida|
|When||Tuesday, June 7, 8:00 PM EST|
|How to Watch||ESPN|
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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