Jets vs. Lightning Odds, Picks, Predictions: Back Tampa Back to Continue Its Strong Play on Home Ice (April 16)
Eakin Howard/Getty Images. Pictured: Andrei Vasilevskiy
- The Lightning are heavy home favorites against the Jets on Saturday.
- With Winnipeg playing on the second leg of a back-to-back, is there value on Tampa Bay at home?
- Tony Sartori breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet below.
Jets vs. Lightning Odds
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The Central Division’s sixth-place Winnipeg Jets travel to Tampa Bay to take on the Atlantic Division’s third-place Lightning. This is the second meeting between these two teams this season as the Jets won the first matchup 7-4 back in early March.
Will the Jets win once again, or can the Lightning get their revenge on home ice?
Jets Looking for Momentum Down the Stretch
The Winnipeg Jets enter this contest on the second half of a road back-to-back as they lost 6-1 to the Florida Panthers on Friday night. The Jets find themselves priced as large underdogs once again, a spot that has not been good for them on the road recently.
Over their last eight games as a road underdog, the Jets are just 2-6, with five of those six losses coming by at least a two-goal margin. The Jets’ season is now essentially over, and they will enter this game deflated as they have lost five of their last seven games.
Since Winnipeg is on the second half of a back-to-back, expect backup goaltender Eric Comrie to get the start for the Jets. While Comrie has been a fine backup this season, his numbers have started to regress as he possesses a mere 0.899 Save Percentage since the All-Star break.
Winnipeg’s defense will probably not do Comrie any favors either as they will have a hard time suppressing Tampa Bay’s powerhouse offense. This season, Winnipeg ranks just 27th in the league in five-on-five Expected Goals Against per 60 minutes (xGA).
Lightning Looking to Continue Dominating as Home Favorites
The Tampa Bay Lightning enter this contest more rested than Winnipeg as they are coming off of Thursday night’s 4-3 overtime win over the Anaheim Ducks. While the Lightning did not cover that game as a home favorite, they have done well this season in home games that they are “expected” to win.
Tampa Bay is now 42-21-6 in games where they are priced as a favorite this season, and they should cruise past a struggling Jets team. Andrei Vasilevskiy is the projected starting goaltender for the Lightning and has been great on home ice this season.
Vasilevskiy boasts a 0.919 Save Percentage at Amalie Arena this season and should shut down a struggling Jets offense. This year, Vasilevskiy ranks seventh among starting goaltenders in five-on-five Goals Saved Above Expected per 60 minutes (GSAx).
He should also get great help from Tampa Bay’s blue line as the Lightning currently rank eighth in the league in five-on-five Expected Goals Against per 60 minutes (xGA). Not only does Tampa Bay have the defensive advantage in this contest, but they have the offensive one as well as they currently rank higher than Winnipeg in five-on-five Expected Goals For per 60 minutes (xGF).
Jets vs. Lightning Pick
While this is certainly a square pick, I just do not see any reason why not to back Tampa Bay in this game. They have more to play for, have the better offense, defense, goaltending, coaching, and are more rested on home ice.
While the Jets did beat the Lightning earlier this season, that was on their home ice, and I think we see a different result with Tampa Bay now playing at home.
Pick: Tampa Bay Lightning -1.5 (+115) | Play down to (+100)
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