Real-time updates of New York Rangers vs. Washington Capitals Game 1

Game 1 is officially here!

The New York Rangers begin their quest for their first Stanley Cup in 30 years with a first-round matchup against the Washington Capitals starting this afternoon at Madison Square Garden.

The Blueshirts enter the postseason with a lot of confidence, and for good reason. They captured their first Presidents Trophy – the best record in the NHL – in nine years, winning 10 of 13 games en route to the playoffs.

Additionally, their opponent, the Washington Capitals, clinched the final wild card spot in the Eastern Conference with a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 82. However, the Rangers are heavy favorites for several reasons, including the Caps’ negatives. -37 goal differential in the regular season – the worst team in the NHL playoffs during the salary cap era.

Will the Rangers come out and take care of business on home ice or can the Capitals, as a significant underdog, steal Game 1 on the road at MSG?

Here are live, real-time updates from Rangers vs. Capitals Game 1 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden:

Rangers enter the playoffs as substantial favorites for Game 1, series

Before the puck drops, it’s important to know what the oddsmakers think of this first-round Eastern Conference matchup.

For Game 1, the Rangers are -240 (bet $240 to win $100) to win the opening game of this series.

Additionally, the Blueshirts are the biggest favorites of the 16 playoff teams to advance to the second round, as they are a whopping -400 favorite (bet $400 to win $100 to advance to the semifinals of the conference.

If the Capitals can win either of the first two games at MSG – especially Game 1 – now would be the time to bet on the Rangers to win the series, with the price inevitably dropping if the series is tied heading to DC.