Devils vs Rangers NHL Odds, Picks, Predictions
Rich Graessle/Getty Images. Pictured: Jack Hughes.
- The Devils, one of the top teams in the NHL, make the short trip to New York to play the Rangers.
- The Rangers have lost back-to-back games, but are hoping home ice can help them get back in the win column.
- Carol Schram previews the game and shares her best bet below.
Devils vs. Rangers Odds
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
There’s a hot and spicy edition of the Hudson River rivalry on tap in the NHL on Monday. The New Jersey Devils will be visiting Madison Square Garden to take on the New York Rangers. It will be the first meeting of the year between the two sides.
The Devils, of course, are one of the top teams in the NHL this season. They’ve bounced back with two more post-Thanksgiving wins after seeing their 13-game winning streak snapped last Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the Rangers are fighting to stay in the Eastern Conference playoff mix. They come into Monday’s contest on the wrong side of that cut line after letting a 3-0 third-period lead slip away Saturday in a 4-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers.
Here’s the latest on the Devils and Rangers, along with your best bet for the game.
New Jersey Devils
After their 13-game winning streak was snapped by the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Devils bounced back in style.
Friday, they put 44 shots on Craig Anderson and skated out of KeyBank Center with a 3-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres. Back at home on Saturday, Jack Hughes recorded the first hat trick of his NHL career and Vitek Vanecek made 37 saves as the Devils took down the Washington Capitals 5-1.
With an 18-4-0 record, the Devils are tops in the Metropolitan Division. They’re tied with the Boston Bruins with 36 points, although the Bruins have played one fewer game.
The Devils’ stat line is phenomenal, at both ends of the ice. They lead the NHL by controlling 61.24% of expected goals at 5-on-5. They give up a league-low 25.8 shots per game and a league-best 2.18 goals per game. And they’re third in scoring, averaging 3.73 goals per game.
New Jersey’s penalty kill is also strong. Surprisingly, the power play is the one area where the Devils aren’t elite this season.
And the Devils’ recent success has come without the services of a couple of key players. Goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood is about two weeks into his three-to-six-week recovery timeline for a sprained MCL. Up front, Ondrej Palat is a couple of weeks into his recovery from groin surgery. All told, he’s expected to miss two months or more.
Forward Nathan Bastian was knocked out of Saturday’s game against the Capitals with an apparent shoulder issue and is listed as day-to-day.
In net, Vanecek has carried most of the load since Blackwood went down. He’s performing well, with a 9.23 save percentage, 2.05 goals-against average and 2.3 goals saved above expected. But Akira Schmid has also been terrific when called upon. He has yet to give up more than two goals in a game this year and boasts a 4-0-0 record, 1.24 goals-against average, a .953 save percentage and 4.7 goals saved above expected.
The Devils are in the middle of a busy stretch and will play their third game in four nights on Monday.
New York Rangers
While Devils fans are basking in their club’s early-season success, tensions are running much higher in Manhattan. A successful western road swing ended with a thud when the Rangers were on the other side of the Anaheim Ducks’ first regulation win of the year last Wednesday, and Saturday’s late collapse against the Oilers made matters worse.
Last season, the Rangers were an unstructured team that had success by leaning on goalie Igor Shesterkin. This year, they’re actually doing well in their 5-on-5 expected goals share and rank eighth at 53.02%. Their special teams are also solid.
What’s noticeable is that Shesterkin, while still good, is not quite at brick-wall level. He’s 10-3-3 with a .914 save percentage, 2.49 goals-against average and 5.9 goals saved above expected. Also, he isn’t getting much support from backup Jaroslav Halak. The 37-year-old Slovak has yet to win his first game as a Blueshirt.
And while the usual suspects are sitting at the top of the Rangers’ points parade, they’re not getting a ton of help from secondary scorers. They could use some juice from farther down the lineup to help make up for the fact that Chris Kreider is not quite at his 50-goal pace this season, and that Artemi Panarin has 24 points but just five goals, and hasn’t scored in the month of November.
The Rangers could also be down a couple of defensemen on Monday. Ryan Lindgren suffered an upper-body issue against the Oilers on Saturday and is listed as day-to-day. Adam Fox also missed Sunday’s practice because he wasn’t feeling well.
Devils vs. Rangers Pick
Parity is the ruling trait of today’s National Hockey League, so not even the best teams can expect to win every night.
But given the circumstances, it’s surprising to see the Devils listed as slight underdogs on Monday — even before considering the questionable status of Fox and Lindgren.
Hop on the moneyline here while you can. These odds could shift before puck drop — especially if one or both of those Rangers’ defensemen miss Monday’s morning skate.
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