Rangers vs Penguins Odds: New York on Ropes in Game 4

Show of Hands by Anyone Who Envisioned 'Domingue-led Penguins'

The Pittsburgh Penguins have the favored New York Rangers in a predicament they didn’t foresee. This opening-round Stanley Cup playoff series continues Monday night, as the homestanding Pens go after a three-games-to-one lead. Examine the Penguins vs Rangers odds in advance of this critical game.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs New York Rangers Game 4 Information

Rangers Desperate

After entering this NHL series as definitive favorites, the New York Rangers are now chasing the Pittsburgh Penguins. Pittsburgh is now the -180 favorite to win the series, while New York is priced at +160. In Saturday’s Game 3, the Rangers turned the tide. New York found itself down, 4-1, early, only to score three unanswered goals. Then, the Penguins returned the favor in the third period, scoring a trio of goals (with two into an empty net) to to seal a 7-4 victory, The wind was let out of New York’s sails.

There was also the matter of the Rangers pulling star goalie Igor Shesterkin after a very shaky opening 20 minutes. It was a bold move by coach Gerard Gallant that initially seemed to jumpstart New York, but ultimately it did not work. Shesterkin struggled mightily in Game 3, but he’s the main reason for the Rangers’ success, so he’ll be back in net tonight.

Rangers Haven’t Regularly Solved Domingue

Career journeyman Louis Domingue’s play as a third-string netminder in this series has been nothing short of incredible. However, as the second period of Game 3 proved, he’s vulnerable, and the Rangers were able to take advantage of that. Any New York game preview should focus on how poorly Shesterkin played, However, it should also note how good the Rangers looked in the second frame when they scored three goals on Domingue.

Even though their offense wasn’t consistent, the Rangers exposed Domingue as a third-stringer, with cheapies scored on him. New York needs to continue to pepper Domingue, and convert on power plays. The usually-reliable special teams went 0-for-3 Saturday on the power play. That can’t continue.

Pittsburgh Is Playing With Fire

Even though odds favor the Penguins to win the series, it’s essentially a pick ’em. game Monday night. Despite its lead in the series, Pittsburgh is in need a of much crisper overall game if they’re going to take a 3-1 lead back to Madison Square Garden.

With pressure on New York, the Rangers should play as the desperate team, because they are. Pittsburgh cannot have any lapses as it they did in Saturday’s second period, which allowed New York to tie the game. By limiting the high-danger Ranger chances, especially on the power play, the Penguins can certainly help out Domingue.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs New York Rangers Head-to-Head

The New York Rangers won three of the four regular-season meetings, with the wins coming over a two-week span in late March/early April. Shesterkin was great in all four games, allowing just four goals combined. He hasn’t been the same in the postseason, however.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs New York Rangers Prediction

We’re going with the Rangers in this one. Even after Shesterkin’s Game 3 poor performance, the Rangers have a big advantage in net. It’s unlikely that Shesterkin’s bad in back-to-back games, particularly with how much urgency New York needs to have.

There is something to be said about the Penguins playing looser and freer with a 2-1 lead. However, it’s about the goaltending, and Shesterkin is much better than Domingue. Also, it’ll be tough for the Pens to quell New York’s strong power play. We were figuring the odds to give a bit more credit to New York.

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