Tuesday NHL Odds, Picks, Prediction: Montreal Canadiens vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Betting Preview
Mitchell Leff/Getty Images. Pictured: Ryan McDonagh, Mikhail Sergachev
- The Lightning are surging up the standings again, while the Canadiens have continued to stumble.
- It's no wonder why Tampa Bay is a big road favorite, but should bettors consider the Habs for an upset?
Canadiens vs. Lightning Odds
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The surging Tampa Bay Lightning will trek north of the border for a Stanley Cup Final rematch against the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday at Bell Centre.
The Lightning have gained points in four straight and are 6-1-1 in their past eight games. Tampa Bay is creeping up on first place in the highly competitive Atlantic Division and has the fifth-best points percentage in the Eastern Conference (.708).
The Canadiens have lost three straight and eight of their past 10 games. They have the worst points percentage in the Eastern Conference (.288) and second-worst in the NHL, leading only the Arizona Coyotes.
The Canadiens Can’t Get a Stop
No team has surrendered more goals than Montreal (93) as the Canadiens continue to struggle without all-world goalie Carey Price. Jake Allen has battled valiantly with a .907 save percentage, but Montreal has the sixth-worst team save percentage in the league (.894) and fifth-worst expected goals rate (45.8%) according to Natural Stat Trick.
It isn’t like Montreal’s offense is lighting the league on fire either. The Canadiens have scored the sixth-fewest goals in the NHL (59) and rank inside the bottom-10 in terms of expected goals created.
Canadiens fans were unable to attend home games last season until the playoffs, but they’re getting restless with what they’ve seen in person this season so far. Montreal is just 4-8-1 at storied Bell Centre and have the third-worst home goals-for percentage (39.7) and fifth-worst expected goals-for percentage (49.2)
The Lightning’s Defense Is Superb
The two-time defending champion Lightning are playing like champs again, particularly away from Amalie Arena. Tampa Bay has lost just twice in regulation in 11 road games, boast the NHL’s third-best points percentage in away games (.718) and fourth-best goals-for percentage on the road (55.7)
The Lightning are 2-0 on their current five-game road trip and drubbed the Philadelphia Flyers 7-1 on Sunday at Wells Fargo Center, causing Philadelphia to fire its coach Alain Vigneault on Monday.
Contrary to Montreal’s struggles, the Lightning boast the NHL’s fourth-best PDO (1.024) and are shooting 11.1 percent in all situations. Steven Stamkos, one of the NHL’s top snipers, is leading the charge by shooting 20 percent. He’s having a resurgent year with a team-high 12 goals and 27 points while missing just one game thus far due to injury.
Lightning vs. Canadiens Pick
Road puck-line bets are really, really hard to wager on since most teams are content to pack their bags and head to their next stop with a win. Also, the Lightning have won just three road games by more than a goal and are due for some regression after that dominant performance in Philadelphia on Sunday.
But Tampa Bay is rolling, and Montreal is terrible, and the puck-line is a tempting price, which makes it a really enticing pick given the gap of talent separating the clubs. We’re confident enough to bet on it.
Pick: Tampa Bay -1.5 (+145)