Though the Penguins have the best record in the Eastern Conference, they really could have some problems over the course of these few weeks on the NHL betting lines. They've got a list of injuries out the wazoos, and there is definitely going to be a point where this plays a big role on the season. Fortunately for Pittsburgh, the problems haven't shown yet, as the team has won four straight games coming into this one, but some of the betting prices just aren't all that enticing for us to back.
LW James Neal has been suspended for this game, while D Deryk Engelland very well could be suspended after crushing LW Justin Abdelkader in the head on Saturday night against the Detroit Red Wings. Though these two suspensions shouldn't be the end of the world, those who play the NHL gambling lines with regularity know why the problem is so severe.
D Rob Scuderi and D Paul Martin were already both out of the lineup coming into this month, but the worse news for the back line is that D Kris Letang and D Brooks Orpik were both put on IR in the last week and a half as well. The depth in defense is really being tested at the moment, as is the depth up front. Neal is out for this one, and C Evgeni Malkin has been out for the better part of a week with a leg injury. He's questionable for this game.
Though the Rangers have failed to cover their last four games in division, and though they have failed to win four straight games following SU victories, they badly have to beat the NHL wagering lines in this game if they want to really seriously challenge in the Metropolitan Division. It's a weak division in which the #2 seed is there for the taking, but the Rangers have to seize moments like this and get two points.
New York though, has had an awful stretch of luck of late. In its last seven games, the team has been favored by no less than a -152 margin, yet it is only 2-5 in those games, including losing as -204 favorites to the New Jersey Devils. This is the first game of the month in which the Rangers will be underdogs, and they have to respond to the challenge after punting so many great opportunities for points.
Free Pick – If there was ever an opportunity for the Rangers to take two points from the Penguins, this would be the night. There are just too many injuries for the Pens to be trusted right now, and we have a feeling that New York is going to make a statement on Wednesday to level its wins and regulation losses against one of the best teams in the league.
Back the Host New York Rangers Wednesday Night