NHL Playoffs Game 2 Same Game Parlay: Picks for Lightning vs Maple Leafs, Rangers vs Devils

NHL Playoffs Game 2 Same Game Parlay: Picks for Lightning vs Maple Leafs, Rangers vs Devils article feature image

Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images. Pictured: Auston Matthews.

Thursday's NHL playoffs slate features a number of crucial Game 2s. I am counting on stars to lead their teams to series splits in my two same game parlays for Lightning vs. Maple Leafs and Rangers vs. Devils.

Same Game Parlay: Lightning vs. Leafs

The Parlay (+800) Bet365

I like the chances of the Maple Leafs generating offense in Game 2.

Victor Hedman is a game-time decision and Erik Cernak is sidelined for a Lightning team that's defended drastically worse this season. Despite the Leafs' poor showing in Game 1, they generated three goals and 3.20 expected goals.

Marner, Matthews and Jarnkrok will play together at even strength and should be in excellent position to do damage. In 83.5 even-strength minutes together, the trio played to a 58% expected goals rating and generated 3.38 xG per 60.

What we are targeting is them combining for one goal at even strength — which Jarnkrok will ideally be in on — and then either another one at evens, or a power-play goal involving both Marner and Matthews.

Matthews picked up his goal scoring down the stretch; generating 5.19 shots on goal per game over the last 20 was key to that success. Nobody will remember he only scored 40 goals this year if he has a strong playoff run, and I believe he will be a factor on Thursday.

Marner played reasonably well in the opener despite taking some heat. He generated three assists and played to an 85% expected goal share at even strength.

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Same Game Parlay: Rangers vs. Devils

The Parlay (+400)

  • Timo Meier Over 3.5 Shots On Goal
  • Jack Hughes Over 3.5 Shots on Goal
  • New Jersey Devils Moneyline

Similar to the Leafs, the Devils were humiliated in their Game 1 as they couldn't recover from an abysmal first period.

The Devils were out of sync and couldn't make relatively easy plays to get out of their zone and move up the ice. That's not typical for them, and I am not counting on it happening again.

In Game 2, I believe New Jersey will look more like the team we saw in the regular season. I like the chances of them controlling play and finding a way to victory. The logical candidates are my favorite targets for the Devils in terms of shot prop targets.

Like most of the Devils, Meier was quiet in Game 1 while skating on the third line with Erik Haula and Jesper Boqvist. The trio did not control much of the overall play and owned just a 40% xG share in minutes played together.

Meier got a chance alongside Nico Hischier and Dawson Mercer later on, and that unit dominated to a 100% expected goal share in a tiny sample of 2:41 together. All three of Meier’s shots came after the midway point in the second. Hischier was the Devils’ best player in Game 1, and playing alongside him should help Meier generate more shot attempts.

Among skaters who played more than 100 minutes this season, Meier’s 23.81 shot attempt per 60 average ranked fourth in the league. His actual shot-on-goal average per 60 (13.01) ranked fifth.

Hughes, who was clearly nervous in his first playoff game, led all skaters with five giveaways in Game 1. Like his team, I thought he settled in deeper into the game. He eventually recorded his first career playoff goal on a meaningless penalty shot. He's averaged well over 3.5 shots on home ice all season; he put up 4.30 shots per game this season.

I like that Hughes and Meier are on two separate lines at even strength for this long shot, and hopefully each of them end up with the majority of shots from those units.

This game is unlikely to become a blowout with how Igor Shesterkin looked in Game 1. The Devils will likely need to continue pushing the pace for offense while playing the top two units big minutes.

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