The Tampa Bay Lightning will even up their series against the New York Rangers
June 3, 2022
The Eastern Conference Finals will be tied at 1-1 after the defending champs win on the road
Lightning at Rangers
Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
8:00 PM ET
Tampa Bay -130
The Rangers winning Game 1 wasn’t necessarily a shock. The manner in which they got the victory was surprising, however.
Even the most-ardent New York fans couldn’t have seen six goals coming in Wednesday night’s opener of the Eastern Conference Finals. Not with Andrei Vasilevskiy in net for Tampa Bay, as the Lightning’s goaltender only gave up three goals in the team’s four-game sweep of Florida.
The experts see the scoring barrage as an aberration, however. On the road, Tampa Bay is a slight favorite in Game 2.
In part, that’s because of Vasilevskiy. It’s hard to imagine one of the league’s best goalies having back-to-back stinkers in the playoffs. As a team, the Lightning have only given up six or more goals five times this season.
But it’s also because of the way the two-time defending Stanley Cup champions have performed during the last two-plus postseasons. They’ve been impeccable at avoiding losing streaks.
Dating back to the 2020 playoffs, the Lightning are 19-0 after a postseason loss. They’re 3-0 in such situations this year.
This time around, it’ll be tough. Winning on the road is always difficult. Doing so in New York is an even bigger challenge.
But Tampa Bay has been good on the road during the playoffs. The Bolts are 4-3 overall, including a three-game winning streak against the Maple Leafs and Panthers that helped end the seasons for both Toronto and Florida.
This is going to be a long, competitive series. Neither team is going to run away with the best-of-seven because neither is going to fold.
Tampa Bay will claw back into the Eastern Conference Finals tonight. The Bolts will spoil the party at Madison Square Garden by extending their amazing streak of wins after a playoff loss to 20 games.
Norm LaChatlier’s Pick: Tampa Bay M/L (-130)