Rangers vs. Lightning NHL Pick – December 10th

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<p>The New York Rangers are looking to build some momentum after dropping the Panthers in Sunrise. They won in a shootout after getting the entire week off. Their last game prior to that was a 4-3 loss against the Jets in a shootout last Sunday, so they had five days off to prepare. The loss to the Jets was a hard one to swallow. They were up 3-0 going into the 3rd period, only to blow that and lose in a shootout. </p>
<p>The Rangers were on the winning side of a shootout against the Panthers. Take a loss in extra time and then get it back the next game. Yeah, the Rangers are going to be in the playoffs. Sure, they don’t have the best talent. However, all things considered they’ve been playing well this season. They go into Tampa with a record of 14-12-2. </p>
<p>Keep in mind that the Rangers are in a rebuilding cycle. They’re likely going to blow things up even more at the trade deadline. There are a few talented options on their roster that competitive teams want. Meanwhile, the Rangers need to start thinking long-term. </p>
<p>Henrik Lundqvist wants to stay in NYC, but behind the scenes I’m sure management would love to unload his contract. The 36-year-old has been solid, though he’s still a drain on the salary cap. Note that they can’t pull a Raptors and ship him out despite his desire to stay in New York. Henrik has a no-trade clause, so that puts a kink in managements plans to send him out. Lundqvist against Louis Domingue looks like a goaltending mismatch on paper, but the better team is wearing the home uniforms tonight. Head below for our free Rangers vs. Lightning pick. </p>
<h2 class=N.Y. Rangers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Pick

Lundqvist has been standing up strong with a 2.68 GAA and 0.919 save percentage. Normally that wouldn’t be worth noting, but given the team around Lundqvist, he’s been doing the best he can. Ondrej Pavelec, now retired, was in net back in March against the Lightning and got torched for 6 goals. The Lightning took a 7-3 win off the Rangers with a barrage of shots on net.

Tampa racked up 49 shots in the contest, as Pavelec didn’t stand much of a chance. It was more of the same in their meeting prior to that game. The Bolts hit the net 45 times in a 5-3 victory and Henrik was benched after allowing 4 goals on 31 shots.

So, in their last two meetings, the Lightning have rattled off 94 shots and 12 goals against the guys from NYC. The Rangers have struggled mightily on the road as well, with a record of 4-8-2. They’ve scored 2.5 goals and allowed 4.14 goals per game on the road. Conversely, Tampa have tallied 4.18 goals and allowed 2.59 per game at home. We’ve seen this act from them before in the regular season and then they suffer a major flop in the playoffs, though.

The Lightning lead the NHL with 3.94 goals per game overall. They’ve won six straight games and are 11-2 in their previous thirteen games. I don’t see them slowing down against a Rangers team who have struggled to find any sense of continuity on the road in the 2018-19 campaign. There is going to be too much firepower on the ice for Tampa in this contest. With the return of Ondrej Palat on the Stamkos-Gourde line, the Lightning are even more dangerous than they were before December. Look for a 5-2 or 5-3 Lightning win, so a play on the puckline seems justified.

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Kyle E / Author

Kyle is a veteran of The Sports Geek and has spent nearly a decade providing accurate sports picks and writeups here. He has been a sports handicapper for 10+ years and started sharing his picks and thoughts in 2011 at The Sports Geek. His expertise spans across multiple sports, including the NFL, NCAAF, MLB, and the NHL. Prior to writing for The Sports Geek, Kyle was a fantasy football expert, who ultimately parlayed it into a successful sports betting career. You can find his picks daily at The Sports Geek.