Lightning Vs Rangers Odds: Tampa Bay A Road Chalk In Game 1

Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Alex Killorn (left) defends from behind as New York Rangers defenseman Adam Fox (right) tries to control the puck (unseen)
Image Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Forget about past history and current form and home-ice advantage. When looking at Lightning vs Rangers odds for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, the handicap comes down to this: What side of the “Rest vs. Rust” fence do you stand on?

Because Wednesday’s series-opening showdown between the Tampa Bay Lightning and New York Rangers doubles as a case study for that debate. While the Rangers just wrapped up a tense seven-game series against Carolina on Monday night, Tampa Bay seemingly has been idle since the day Wayne Gretzky retired. In fact, New York has played four games (in six days) since the Lightning finished off their four-game sweep of the top-seeded Florida Panthers on May 23.

So will the two-time-defending Stanley Cup champs return to the ice Wednesday well rested and ready to take advantage of a gassed-out Rangers squad? Or will the Lightning be rusty and have trouble against an opponent that has been in a play-every-other-day groove pretty much since the postseason began?

NHL oddsmakers and bettors certainly have an opinion. And has the analysis in our comprehensive Lightning vs Rangers Game 1 and best-of-7 betting preview.

NHL Playoff Odds

MatchupMoneylinePucklineTotalSeries Odds
Lightning-130+200 (-1.5 goals)5.5 (Over +110)-175
Rangers+110-250 (+1.5 goals)5.5 (Under -130)+150

Odds via DraftKings and updated as of 5:45 p.m. ET on June 1. 

N.Y. Rangers vs Tampa Bay Lightning (8 p.m. ET/ESPN)

Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Ross Colton (left) controls the puck on his stick as New York Rangers left wing Alexis Lafreniere (right) defends
Image Credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Playoff Results & Stats
8-3 overall (4-1 home; 4-2 road)
Defeated Toronto Maple Leafs in Round 1 (4-3) and Florida Panthers in Round 2 (4-0)

Goals scored: 36 (3.27, 7th)
Goals allowed 27 (2.45, 2nd)

Power play: 11-for-48, 22.9% (8th)
Penalty kill: 36-for-31, 87.8% (3rd)

New York Playoff Results & Stats
8-6 overall (6-1 home; 2-5 road)
Defeated Pittsburgh Penguins in Round 1 (4-3) and Carolina Hurricanes in Round 2 (4-3)

Goals scored: 48 (3.43 per game; T-4th)
Goals allowed: 42 (3.00 per game; 5th)

Power play: 13-for-40, 32.5% (2nd)
Penalty kill: 33-for-41, 80.5% (8th) 

Regular season series: New York won, 3-0. The Rangers sandwiched a 4-0 home victory between two wins at Tampa Bay (4-3 in a shootout and 2-1).

Slap Shots 

Lightning: Have won six consecutive games since being down 3-games-to-2 versus Toronto in the opening round. … Outscored the Panthers 15-3 in the conference semifinals. … Gave up 23 goals in their first six playoff games but only four goals in the last five. … 15-5 overall going back to April 14 (6-3 on the road). … Center Ross Colton and RW Corey Perry share the team lead with five playoff goals. … RW Nikita Kucherov is tied for 5th in the NHL in both playoff assists (11) and points (15). … Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy has a 2.22 goals-against average and .932 save percentage. He stopped 151 of 154 shots in the Florida series and enters the playoffs having not allowed a goal in more than 103 minutes of action. … Tampa beat the New York Islanders in the Eastern Conference Finals in 2020 and 2021, going 8-5.

Rangers: Won five elimination games (three vs. Pittsburgh, two vs. Carolina) to advance to first conference final since 2015. … Went 4-1 after losing the first two games to the Hurricanes. Clinched the series with a 5-2 home win Saturday and a 6-2 road victory Monday. … Home team is 11-3 in Rangers games in the playoffs, including 7-1 in the last eight. … Eleven of the team’s 14 postseason games (including six in a row) were decided by multiple goals. … Center Mike Zibanejad (7 goals, 12 assists) and defenseman Adam Fox (5 goals, 13 assists) rank third and fourth in playoff points with 19 and 18, respectively. … LW Chris Kreider is tied for third in the NHL with eight playoff goals. … Goaltender Igor Shesterkin was spectacular against Carolina, turning aside 222 of 234 shots. He has a 2.74 GAA and .926 save percentage in the playoffs. That save percentage is .939 in the last 10 games. (321 saves on 342 shots).

Betting Nuggets

  • TB is 4-1 in its last five on the road
  • TB is 22-8 in its last 30 playoff games as a favorite
  • NY is 6-2 in its last eight as a home underdog
  • NY is 24-7 in its last 31 vs Atlantic Division teams
  • Under for TB is on runs of 5-0 overall, 13-6 on the road and 10-3 as a favorite
  • Under is 5-2 in NY’s last seven overall
  • Over for NY is on runs of 5-2 at home and 4-0 as a home underdog
  • NY is 5-1 in its last six against the Lightning
  • Underdog is 4-1 in the last five series meetings

Lightning vs Rangers Odds and Action 

New York Rangers left wing Dryden Hunt (left) defends from behind as Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman (right) controls the puck (unseen)
Image Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE 5:45 P.M. ET WEDNESDAY: About 2 1/2 hours before the puck drops for Game 1, DraftKings’ Lightning vs Rangers odds board has Tampa Bay as a -130 road favorite, with New York catching a +110 underdog price. That’s a very slight change from the book’s opener of Lightning -130/Rangers +105. Ticket count on the moneyline is split nearly right down the middle, with 51% favoring New York and 49% favoring Tampa Bay. The money, however, is flowing in the direction of the home team, as the Rangers are seeing 61% of the dollars.

The puckline remains unchanged from 24 hours ago at Tampa Bay (-1.5) +200/New York (+1.5) -250, which is barely off the opening number of Tampa Bay +195/New York -240. Ticket count (58%) and money (57%) leans in the Lightning’s direction.

The total has adjusted from 5.5/Under -115 to 5.5/Under -130. There remains two-way action on the total, with 58% of the bets on the Over and 57% of the cash on the Under.

UPDATE 4:45 P.M. ET TUESDAY: DraftKings opened at Lightning -130/Rangers +105 on its NHL playoff odds board for Game 1. The moneyline has since bounced between Lightning -130 and Lightning -125, with New York holding firm at +105 on the opposite side. However, moments ago, the Game 1 price jumped to its peak of Tampa Bay -135/New York +115, even though 52% of early tickets and 62% of early cash on the home underdog.

The puckline has shifted from an opener of Lightning (-1.5) +195/Rangers (+1.5) -240 to a low point of Lightning +185/Rangers -225 and a high mark of Lightning +225/Rangers -280. It has now settled at Lightning +200/Rangers -250 amid early two-way betting action of 60% wagers on Tampa Bay and 58% cash on New York.

The total opened at 5.5 flat (-110 both ways), has seen multiple juice moves, and is currently priced at 5.5/Under -115. Action is split in DraftKings’ NHL playoff betting market, with 66% of all tickets on the Over and 57% of all dollars on the Under.

Check back prior to puck drop for additional NHL playoff odds and action updates for Game 1 of Lightning vs Rangers.