We are at the stage of the season where we are seriously starting to take a look at who might be making a real run at the Stanley Cup this season. There are the very obvious choices that jump right off the page, but there are also a couple of teams who are getting hot at just the right time. In between that lot you have a number of teams who are going to get into the postseason, but who do not look as though they have what it takes to make a deep run. One of that group has to be the Tampa Bay Lightning, as they are on a run right now that could well end with them handing the Atlantic Division to the Florida Panthers in a neatly wrapped gift box. The Lightning really need a win against the New Jersey Devils on Saturday night, or the doubts about their ability to progress beyond the opening round are going to continue to be raised. Be sure to get your wagers in on this one in our NHL Betting Lines page before the opening puck drop.
How To Bet the New Jersey Vs Tampa Bay Game Info
Why bet on the New Jersey Devils
For the New Jersey Devils (37-33-8) success this season was probably never going to be measured on whether or not they made the playoffs. This is a team in a transition phase, and it has to be said that their showing this season, when expectations were relatively low, is a sign that they are heading in the right direction. Scoring was always going to be an issue for this group, but they have been good enough defensively to keep the majority of their games tight. It may not be the most exciting brand of hockey to watch, but it’s effective for a team that is trying to get back in the habit of winning games. The Devils are 5-4-1 in their last 10 games, and they are also a game above .500 on the road this season. They are averaging 2.2 GPG, and are giving up 2.4 GPG.
Why bet on the Tampa Bay Lightning
The Tampa Bay Lightning (44-28-5) are one of the tougher teams to figure out this season, especially given how they are playing coming down the stretch. They have slipped into a win one/lose one stretch that has seen them go 5-5-0 in their last 10, whilst also handing the Atlantic Division lead to the Florida Panthers. The Lightning cannot afford to keep playing this way if they want to win the division title, and you get the sense that they are ready to go out and make up for a poor performance last time out when they were blanked by the Montreal Canadiens. Tampa are 24-13-3 on home ice, but have lost 2 of their last 3 there. They are averaging 2.7 GPG, and are giving up 2.4 GPG.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
It was the Lightning who came away with the shutout win when they played the Devils earlier this season, and I think we can expect another low scoring one here, with Tampa once again getting the win.
New Jersey Devils 1 Tampa Bay Lightning 3