NHL Odds, Picks: Devils vs. Rangers Game 4 Prediction
Photo by Rich Graessle/NHLI via Getty Images. Pictured: Jack Hughes.
- The New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers continue their rivalry series on Monday night.
- The Devils entered this series as favorites, but find themselves down 2-1 and desperate for a win.
- Ryan Dadoun preview Devils vs. Rangers Game 4 and provides a pick on the total below.
Devils vs. Rangers Game 4 Odds
|Over/Under||5.5 (-118 / -104)|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The New Jersey Devils entered theis first-round NHL Playoff series as mild favorites, but the New York Rangers aren’t a team that can be dismissed.
The Rangers have stars up front, on defense and in goal. That has all come together to put them ahead 2-0 in the series.
New Jersey managed to squeak out a 2-1 overtime victory in Game 3, but the pressure is still on the Devils going into Game 4 on Monday.
New Jersey Devils
The Devils have managed just four goals over the opening three games, which is a huge problem because a lot of their regular-season success came on the strength of their offense.
After giving New Jersey a taste of what he was capable of last season, Jack Hughes set career highs in this past regular season with 43 goals and 99 points. He was backed by a great supporting cast — Nico Hischier (31 goals, 80 points), Jesper Bratt (32 goals, 73 points) and Dawson Mercer (27 goals, 56 points).
Something that might be impacting the Devils is a lack of playoff experience.
Of the forwards mentioned above, Hischier and Bratt are the oldest (24), and because New Jersey last advanced to the postseason in 2018, none of them have played much on this stage. While Hughes has scored twice regardless, New Jersey hasn’t gotten a single goal out of Hischier, Bratt and Mercer. In the case of Mercer, he also hasn’t managed an assist in the postseason.
The Devils have some veteran options, but they haven’t made up the difference. Tomas Tatar, 32, hasn’t recorded a point yet, while Erik Haula, 31, has a goal over the first three contests. At least there’s 29-year old offensive defenseman Dougie Hamilton, who played a huge role in Saturday’s victory with the overtime winner and an assist.
Akira Schmid was a standout performer in Game 3, too, stopping 35-of-36 shots. It wouldn’t be surprising to see him rewarded with another start on Monday, but keep in mind he’s 22 years old and has just 25 outings worth of NHL experience, including Saturday’s start, so it’s hard to say if he’ll be able to keep up with the Rangers in the long run.
New York Rangers
It will be especially tough for Schmid to hold down the fort given the talented forwards of the Rangers. While New York finished the regular season with a worse record than the Devils, it’s hard to look at a team featuring Artemi Panarin, Mika Zibanejad, Vincent Trocheck, Chris Kreider — as well as trade acquisitions Vladimir Tarasenko and Patrick Kane — as actual underdogs.
All of those forwards have recorded at least two points through three playoff games, with Kane (one goal, five points) and Kreider (five goals) doing particularly well. The Rangers have also gotten plenty of help from third liners Filip Chytil (one goal, three points) and Kaapo Kakko (one goal, two points), so they’re firing on all cylinders.
The Rangers are more than just an offensive force though. They also have one of the best goaltenders in the world.
Igor Shesterkin posted a 37-13-8 record, 2.48 GAA and .916 save percentage in 58 regular-season appearances and has held the Devils to two or fewer goals in each playoff outing thus far. To top it all off, New York has 2021 Norris Trophy-winner Adam Fox to headline its defense.
This really is a team without much in the way of weaknesses.
Devils vs. Rangers Pick
New Jersey might have been the betting favorite going into this series, but down 2-1 and with Monday’s contest being played in New York, oddsmakers are actually treating the Devils as significant underdogs. That surprises me. While I agree New York is more likely to win, I think the Rangers have only a slight edge.
I am tempted to take the Rangers in the 60-min moneyline, but instead, I’m going to recommend over 5.5 goals.
Game 3 featured some strong goaltending and Shesterkin is great more often than not, but the focus on the netminding duel overlooks the sheer number of talented forwards employed by the Devils and Rangers.
These teams combined to score 6.85 goals per game during the regular season, so with the over/under down to just 5.5, it seems like a good time to latch onto the over.
Pick: Over 5.5 (-118 | Play to -130)
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