The New York Rangers and Tampa Bay Lightning have a Saturday night matchup at Amalie Arena in Florida. The Lightning are coming off a textbook 4-1 win over the Seattle Kraken on March 16.
That’s Lightning hockey, as the defense was tough to beat while Nikita Kucherov got onto the scoresheet. Victor Hedman scored 2 goals with 6 shots on the net.
Andrei Vasilevskiy didn’t have the biggest workout in that one. He faced 25 shots, but came up clutch with 24 stops. The win was the second in a row for the Lightning following a 2-1 win over the Canucks.
“Anytime you lose three in a row — I mean, there’s no panic in this group — but, it’s a wake-up call, for sure.”#TBLvsSEA
— Tampa Bay Lightning (@TBLightning) March 17, 2022
This happened after a three-game losing streak for the Lightning. They were on the heels of a 4-1 loss to the Edmonton Oilers before getting back on track.
The Lightning are going into tonight with a record of 39-15-6 and 84 points in the Atlantic Division. They trail the Panthers by 6 points for the lead.
Tampa is fine with that because dominating and winning the Presidents’ Trophy wasn’t working for them in the past. Now, the Bolts are on the verge of going back-to-back-to-back.
The Lightning won the bubble Stanley Cup then proved it wasn’t a fluke a year later. They can’t be discounted again this year.
Final from The Garden. pic.twitter.com/CHhdMKagv9
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) March 18, 2022
The Rangers are going into Tampa with losses in three of their previous five attempts. The Islanders edged the Rangers out for a 2-1 win in their most recent outing.
It has been a successful year for the Rangers, as they carry a record of 38-18-5 and 81 points in the Metropolitan Division. That’s a tough division, and the Rangers are handling things well with a 7-point deficit behind the Carolina Hurricanes in the Metropolitan.
Head below for our best Rangers vs. Lightning prediction on March 19, 2022.
New York Rangers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Betting Odds and Team Statistics:
The following odds are courtesy of BetOnline:
|NY Rangers||+1.5 (-150)||+184||Over 5.5 (-116)|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||-1.5 (-140)||+130||Under 5.5 (+105)|
|Team Data||NY Rangers||Tampa Bay Lightning|
|Goals Per Game||2.97||3.37|
|Goals Against Per Game||2.80||2.57|
|Shots Per Game||28.8||30.2|
|Shots Against Per Game||32.1||29.7|
Rangers vs. Lightning Prediction:
The Rangers are going to be fine if Igor Shesterkin stays hot down the stretch. Shesterkin has been the best player on the ice for the Rangers this season.
There are a few guys on this roster that you can point to, but Shesterkin stands out between the pipes. He enters Tampa with a 2.07 GAA, and a 0.938 save percentage through 40 games.
He hit a sour spot versus the Blues and Stars with 4 goals against, but responded nicely versus the Islanders. Overall this season, the Lightning are the third-best team in the NHL with 2.57 goals allowed per game.
They were in perfect defensive form in their most recent showing versus the Lightning. The Rangers blanked the Bolts for a 4-0 win on January 4.
Shesterkin made 38 saves for an impressive shutout in that winning performance. If the Rangers have that Shesterkin in the playoffs, look out for the Rangers.
The Rangers absolutely need him to have success, though. They are just 29th in shots per game and 18th in goal scoring.
New York Rangers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Betting Trends:
- 6-1 overall in their previous seven games versus the Atlantic Division
- 3-6 overall in thier previous nine games versus the Lightning
- 2-5 overall in their previous seven games as an underdog
- UNDER is 7-0 in their previous seven games versus the Eastern Conference
- UNDER is 6-2 in their previous eight games after allowing 2 goals or fewer in their previous game
- 49-19 overall in their previous 68 games at home
- 24-10 overall in their previous 34 games versus the Metropolitan Division
- UNDER is 5-2-1 in their previous eight games at home
- UNDER is 4-0 in their previous four games
- UNDER is 4-1 in their previous five games on a Saturday
The Lightning have been getting solid work from Andrei Vasilevskiy, though this is expected for the 27-year-old. He had a 2.21 GAA last season, the third time in his career that Vasilevskiy finished with a 2.40 GAA or better.
The defense has given Vasilevskiy a boost as well. Tampa is seventh in the NHL with 29.7 shots against per game.
They’ve allowed 2.43 goals per game at home this season, where Vasilevskiy owns a 2.03 GAA and 0.927 save percentage at Amalie Arena. The UNDER at plus money looks tempting in this one.
That looks like good value with Shesterkin and Vasilevskiy in the crease. I’m backing a low-scoring final, pointing towards a play on the UNDER at Amalie Arena.