Rangers vs. Golden Knights NHL Odds, Pick: Vegas Looks to Stay Hot at Home
Jim Davis/The Boston Globe via Getty Images. Pictured: The Golden Knights celebrate a goal.
- The Golden Knights are strong home favorite against the Rangers on Wednesday night.
- Vegas is riding high after snapping the Bruins' home winning streak in its last game.
- Continue reading for a full breakdown of this matchup, including a betting pick.
Rangers vs. Golden Knights Odds
|Golden Knights Odds||-134|
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
Back on home ice after being the first team this season to defeat the Boston Bruins at TD Garden, the Vegas Golden Knights are set to open a three-game homestand on Wednesday against the New York Rangers.
The 19-7-1 Golden Knights have performed well under former Bruins bench boss Bruce Cassidy. They’re now perched comfortably atop the Western Conference standings. Meanwhile, former Vegas coach Gerard Gallant has seen his 12-10-5 Rangers struggle with inconsistency this season. They’ve been especially vulnerable on the defensive side of the puck.
Here’s the latest on both teams, and your best bet for Wednesday’s game.
Rangers Hope For Consistency Out West
After coming back to beat the St. Louis Blues 6-4 at Madison Square Garden on Monday night, the Rangers are on a two-game trip out west. They’ll also touch down in Denver to play the Colorado Avalanche on Friday.
Heading into a busy slate of games on Tuesday, the Rangers sit just outside the Eastern Conference playoff picture, but have played more games than most of the teams they’re jockeying with. Compared to last season, the Rangers have maintained the same level of offense — and more power play chances are yielding the same number of goals, even though their efficiency rate is now a little lower.
They’ve tightened up their 5-on-5 play this season, and are now ranked 11th in the league in expected goals share. But Igor Shesterkin’s regression from a god-like goaltender to mere mortal status has led to an overall goals-against increase of nearly half a goal per game. And that has been a problem.
Shesterkin has been fine. He’s just not stealing games like he did last season. And new backup Jaroslav Halak has had a tough time delivering wins, with a 1-6-1 record so far.
The Rangers are running close to a full lineup. Their only injury is to forward Filip Chytil, who has missed the last two games and is listed as day-to-day with a lower-body issue.
Golden Knights Return Home Hot
After he was fired by the Bruins last June, Bruce Cassidy must have felt tremendously gratified to have his Golden Knights snap his old team’s record-setting 14-game home winning streak to start this season — even if it took a shootout to get the job done.
Could there be a letdown when Cassidy and his squad return to The Fortress on Wednesday? Not if their high-energy fanbase has anything to say about it — although it is worth noting that Vegas is 7-5-0 on home ice this season but has put up a far superior 12-2-1 record on the road.
But the Golden Knights have shown good resilience — never losing more than two in a row, and winners of five of six games that have gone to overtime or a shootout. And while it was expected that goaltending was going to be a thorn in their side after Robin Lehner was placed on long-term injured reserve for the season, Logan Thompson has become a front-runner for the Calder Trophy while proving that he can handle a starter’s load, while backup Adin Hill has also been just fine.
As you’d expect from a Cassidy team, Vegas has strong possession numbers at 5-on-5, ranked seventh overall with an expected goals share of 53.09%. Their biggest weakness is arguably their penalty killing, which clocks in at a pedestrian 74.3% success rate.
The Golden Knights pulled off their win against Boston on Monday without a couple of key players. Defenseman Alex Pietrangelo missed his fourth game for personal reasons, while first-line center Jack Eichel is listed as day-to-day with a lower-body issue.
Rangers vs. Golden Knights Pick
Overall, Eastern Conference teams have fared quite well against clubs from the West this season. The Rangers are a solid 8-5-3 against Western teams, but Vegas has no time for that narrative. Maybe it’s Cassidy’s pedigree as a former Eastern Conference coach, but his Golden Knights are 10-1-0 against squads from the opposite side this year.
That’s part of the reason why Vegas is heavily favored at -160 on the moneyline, with implied odds of over 61% for a win.
A romp might be too much to expect on Wednesday, especially if Eichel and/or Pietrangelo remain unavailable. But the home side should have the goods to snag a regulation victory against the visiting Rangers. That’s available at plus money as of Tuesday evening.
Pick: Golden Knights in regulation (+104); play down to -110