NHL

The Hudson River rivalry was very one-sided in game one of the Stanley Cup Playoffs first-round NHL matchup between the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils. The playoff-experienced Rangers squad stepped into the playoff spotlight with ease, increasing their effort and pressure. At the same time, the rather inexperienced Devils appeared to be caught out by the moment and were soundly defeated 5-1 on home ice.

Will the Rangers head back across the Hudson to Madison Square Garden with a 2-0 series lead, or will the Devils show up, play playoff hockey, and even the series 1-1? We’ll review the stats, trends, NHL odds, and recent performances in our Rangers vs Devils betting tips.

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Overall Game Info & Outlook

  • New York Rangers (47-22-13, 1-0 playoffs) at New Jersey Devils (52-22-8, 0-1 playoffs)
  • The Rangers won game one of the series 5-1 on April 20th.
  • Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey.
  • Thursday, April 20th, 2023, 7:30 PM ET. You can catch the game on TBS, SN360, TVAS, MSG, and MSGSN.

New York Rangers at New Jersey Devils Betting Preview 

New York Rangers Preview

The New York Rangers won the first game of the series 5-1. The Rangers have a 2-2-1 record against the Devils in the last five games and are 5-5 (5-2-3) in the previous ten games.

The Rangers will enter game two with no injury concerns. 

Trends:  

  • The Rangers have won their last four Conference Quarterfinals games.
  • New York has a 4-6 over/under record in the previous ten games. 
  • New York is 7-3 in the last ten games in New Jersey
  • The Favorite and the Rangers are 11-4 in the previous 15 matchups. 

The Rangers scored five goals in the first game of the series and averaged 3.3 goals per game in the regular season. The powerplay converted at 66.7% in game one while converting at 24.1% in the regular season, ranking seventh in the NHL

Defensively, the Rangers were excellent in game one, giving up one goal, compared to their season average of 2.6 goals per game, ranking fourth in the NHL stats. The penalty-killing unit was perfect in game one after operating at 81.2% during the regular season.

Norris Trophy candidate Adam Fox had four assists for the Rangers in game one.

2021-22 Vezina Trophy winner Igor Shesterkin (37-13-8, 2.48 GAA, .916 SV%) looked on point in game one, making 27 saves in the victory (.964 SV%).

Prediction for winning this game:

For the New York Rangers to win this game, they simply need to run back Tuesday night. If the Rangers show to play an improved team, capitalize on early powerplays and high-scoring threat chances early in the game again, and Igor Shesterkin proves he’s still among the best goalies in the NHL, New York will win this game.

New Jersey Devils Preview 

Game one wasn’t a good look for the New Jersey Devils. As a young, playoff-inexperienced squad, the Devils weren’t prepared or didn’t come to play on Tuesday night and were embarrassed on home ice by their cross-river rivals. 

New Jersey has a 6-4 record in the last ten games. The Devils are 3-1-1 against the Rangers this season.

Trends:  

  • The Devils are 5-1 in their previous six home games.
  • New Jersey is 1-5 in their last six Conference Quarterfinals games 
  • The Devils have a 6-3-1 over/under record in the last ten games.
  • The over is 15-4-2 in the previous 21 head-to-head matchups in New Jersey.

New Jersey only scored one goal in game one, down from their season average of 3.5 goals per game, which ranked the Devils fourth overall in the NHL. The Devils’ powerplay went 0-4 against the Rangers in game one but operated at 21.9% in the regular season. 

Defensively, New Jersey gave up five goals in game one, which is entirely different from their season average of 2.7 goals per game, ranking them eighth in the league. The Devils’ penalty-killing unit operated at 33.3% (1/3) in game one. New Jersey will need the penalty-killing unit to resemble the squad that killed 82.6% of penalties this season, finishing fourth in the NHL.

Vitek Vanacek should be back in the net after giving up four goals on 22 shots (.818 SV%). New Jersey needs Vanacek to be better and closer to the goalie that posted a 33-11-4 record, a 2.45 GAA, and a .911 SV% in the regular season. 

Prediction for winning this game:

For the New Jersey Devils to win this game, they need to shake off Tuesday’s result, take the loss as a learning experience, require better goaltending from Vanacek, and need to increase the intensity of their gameplay. If the Devils don’t show up again tonight, this series might be over in four or five games.

Top Sportsbooks Odds 

Betonline: New Jersey Devils -127

Bovada: VPN Can’t Access

MyBookie: New Jersey Devils -130

BetUS: New Jersey Devils -130

BetNow: New Jersey Devils -130

New York Rangers at New Jersey Devils Odds & Picks

Odds for this Matchup: 

Playoff series tend to ebb and flow, and the NHL teams are starting on the road, and winning game one are playing with house money in game two. Most series in the NHL and NBA playoffs have been evened up in game two. The question is will the New Jersey Devils show up to play and rise to the occasion, or will they crumble under the pressure of a playoff atmosphere again?

We’re taking the New Jersey Devils to bounce back to win and even the series at 1-1, although we predict they will barely do it, squeezing out a 3-2 win on home ice.

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