NHL Best Bets for Rangers vs Hurricanes Game 6 (Thursday May 16)

NHL Best Bets for Rangers vs Hurricanes Game 6 (Thursday May 16) article feature image

(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) Pictured: Igor Shesterkin

The Hurricanes will look to stave off elimination and continue their push for what would be a historic comeback from 3-0 down against the Rangers.

I'll outline my two NHL best bets for tonight's exciting matchup below.

New York Rangers vs Carolina Hurricanes Game 6:

In Game 5, we saw a late collapse from the Rangers, who came out a little too loose in the third and allowed four unanswered goals.

By no means are the Rangers a true defensive juggernaut. However, they have done well this postseason to limit opposing shooters to the types of chances that Igor Shesterkin can handle. If Shesterkin is set and square to shooters in reasonable locations, chances are those shots won't go in.

What we haven't typically seen is the kind of complete defensive breakdown we saw on Eric Staal's game-tying goal, or on Jordan Martinook's third-period tally, which gave the Hurricanes a 3-1 lead.

Rangers coach Peter Laviolette was critical of his team's performance. While we are always going to hear that kind of chatter, the Rangers have proven to be a better defensive side than we saw in the third period of Game 5. The Rangers likely won't own more of the possession in this game, but we should see them play a sharper defensive game overall.

Closely contested games are always going to favor the Rangers. They are excellent at forcing goaltenders to move east-west with plays to the weak side, and have arguably the best goaltender alive. If New York can prevent the kind of full blown onslaught we saw in the third period of Game 5, you have to view it as the side holding more value at +136.

It also seems probable that this game will be relatively low event. It's hard to imagine, in a do-or-die spot on home ice, Rod Brind'Amour's side giving up anything easy in five-on-five play. And while the Rangers' power play has been excellent in this series, power-play opportunities tend to dry up in Games 6 and 7 of the NHL playoffs.

In the first round of this season's playoffs, we saw six combined Game 6 and 7s. Those games averaged an absurdly low total of just 2.83 goals per game. Hockey continues to feature fairly conservative mindsets around the league. So, let's play into that and bet both the Rangers and an early under.

Best Bets: First Period Under 1.5 -124 (FanDuel, Play to -130), Rangers Moneyline +136 (FanDuel, Play to +135)

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