If I asked you who ended up as the runner-up in the Stanley Cup Final over the last 5 years, how many of those teams could you name? I’m not going to lie, I would have a tough time remembering them all, and it’s my job to know those types of things. The one team that you may remember quite easily is last year’s runner-up, which was the Tampa Bay Lightning. They are looking to go one better this year, but they are finding that getting back to the promised land is not an easy journey to make. They will have a tough divisional game on their hands on Thursday night when they face an Ottawa Senators team that’s is starting to become a little desperate given their current standings. This is a match-up that has produced goals this season, and we might expect more of the same on Thursday. That might just prompt you to go with the OVER when you place your NHL online bets for this game.
Tampa Bay Lightning vs Ottawa Senators Free NHL Pick
When: Thursday, March 3 at 7:30 PM EST
Where: Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa
TV: SUN and RDS
Radio: CFGO and WFLA
Live Stream: NHL Stream
NHL Odds: TBA
Why bet on the Tampa Bay Lightning
The Tampa Bay Lightning (37-22-4) were a little slow off the mark this season, but they have slowly built a head of steam that has taken them to within 2 points of the lead in the Atlantic Division. They are one of the hottest teams in hockey right now and are skating into this one having gone 8-2-0 in their last 10 games. The Lightning have taken 2 of 3 from Ottawa this season, and have scored some goals in the process, which isn’t really a major surprise when you consider that Tampa are in the top 10 in the league in scoring. Their road play has been very good this season, and you can bet that there are plenty of teams who would willingly take the 17-12-2 record that the Lightning have posted on the road. Tampa Bay are averaging 2.7 GPG, and are giving up 2.3 GPG.
Why bet on the Ottawa Senators
The Senators (30-27-7) are in a tough spot right now, as they are on the outside of the playoff picture looking in. There are a number of reasons why they find themselves in this predicament, but the number one reason has to be their inability to keep the puck out of the net. This is a team that can score a lot of goals, but more often than not they are forced to go all out offensively in order to make up for their deficiencies at the back. Ottawa are 17-10-5 on home ice this season, and they are 5-4-1 overall in their last 10 games. They are 5 points back of the final Wild Card spot, and need to think about making a move soon. Ottawa are averaging 2.8 GPG, and are giving up 3.0 GPG.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
There have been 3 games played between these two teams this season, and they have averaged 6 goals per game. That makes the OVER look like a pretty solid bet here, and I would also take the Lightning to get the win on the road.