The New York Rangers will open up the 2018-19 NHL season by hosting the Nashville Predators. The Rangers are looking for a bounce-back season after missing the playoffs last year. The Nashville Predators recorded 117 points last season, but failed to reach the Stanley Cup Finals. Both the Rangers and Predators finished the preseason portion of their schedule with a 3-3 record.
The Nashville Predators come into this game as the slight favorite. The Predators have a -145 money line, while the New York Rangers come in at +125. The over/under for total goals in this game is set at 6.0.
Rangers vs. Predators Odds
Spread: Nashville Predators -145
Rangers vs. Predators Head to Head
The Rangers and Predators played just two games against each other a season ago. The teams split in those games. Nashville scored a combined seven goals in those games, while the Rangers scored ten goals.
Rangers vs. Predators Stats
Mats Zuccarello led the New York Rangers in points a season ago, recording 53 points including 37 assists. The Rangers were led in goal scoring by center man Mika Zibanejad, who recorded 27 goals a season ago. The Rangers struggled to score goals a season ago but got terrific work from their top goaltender. Veteran goaltender Henrik Lundqvist sported an impressive 2.98 goals against average last season.
The Nashville Predators have a deep and talented roster, and they had a bunch of players put up big numbers last season. Filip Forsberg led the Predators with 64 points a season ago, despite not leading the team in goals or assists. Viktor Arvidsson led the team with 29 goals, and P.K. Subban recorded 43 assists to lead the Predators.
Rangers vs. Predators News
The New York Rangers have one of the youngest rosters in the NHL this season, and there will likely be growing pains along the way. The Rangers announced earlier in the week that they will have five alternate captains for this season, including Marc Staal, but they have not named an official captain.
Predators forward Austin Watson has been suspended for the first 27 games of this season after pleading no contest to a domestic assault charge in July. Nashville will also be without forward Scott Hartnell this season after the veteran announced his retirement from the NHL after a 17 year playing career.
Rangers vs. Predators Predictions
Both the Rangers and Predators were inconsistent during the preseason, but many of the regular players were sitting out. The Rangers had a very disappointing 2017-18 season, and will once again feature a lineup full of young, unproven players. The Nashville Predators were an offensive juggernaut last season, and they should once again be a top NHL team this season. Betting on a team in the season opener is always a difficult task, but Nashville has a huge advantage in talent in this matchup. Bet the Nashville Predators -145 over the Rangers on Thursday night.