The final push to the playoffs in the NHL has begun as this is the final week of regular-season games. The Tampa Bay Lightning host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday night in a game that only matters for the home team.
Tampa Bay is riding a three-game winning streak and has been blowing teams out. The Lightning have 106 points and will be a threat in the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Columbus comes into this game with just 79 points and will will be watching the Stanley Cup playoffs from home. The Blue Jackets won their most recent game, but things were a struggle up to that point.
The NHL betting lines have the Tampa Bay Lightning as massive moneyline favorites at -400.
The Columbus Blue Jackets have really struggled to get defensive stops all season and are allowing over 3.6 goals per game. Columbus has killed off just 78 percent of their penalties and both of those numbers could have a big impact on this game.
Columbus is a team that doesn’t mind playing fast and is scoring more than 3.1 goals per game. This strategy has worked against some of the bad teams in the league, but it’s not going to be successful against Tampa Bay.
Patrik Laine leads the team with 26 goals, but he is currently dealing with a minor injury. Columbus has shut down some of its other top players since the remaining games don’t really mean anything.
Lightning Streaking on Offense
The Tampa Bay Lightning are scoring close to 3.5 goals per game and they have been red hot of late. Tampa Bay has won four of its last five games while tallying 28 goals.
The Lightning just ended the 13-game winning streak by the Florida Panthers, erupting for eight goals. Nick Paul had a pair of goals in the win and then spoke about the Panthers’ winning streak, saying: “And we wanted to come here and be the ones that ended it.”
Tampa Bay also has the ability to shut teams down, allowing less than 2.8 goals per game. Andrei Vasilevskiy has gone 37-18-5 and he could put up a low number against Columbus.
Blue Jackets vs Lightning Head-to-Head
This is just the second meeting of the season between the Blue Jackets and the Lightning, and that’s a good thing for Columbus.
Tampa Bay won the first meeting 7-2, their fourth straight win in this head-to-head matchup.
Blue Jackets vs Lightning Game Information
Game: Blue Jackets (36-36-7) vs Lightning (49-22-8)
NHL betting online will really heat up when the playoffs begin, but this game will provide a great betting option as well. This game should not be close and don’t worry about an upset taking place.
Tampa Bay looks to be rounding into postseason form, especially on the offensive end. Columbus has been a bad defensive team all season and it could be a long night for the Blue Jackets.
The Lightning will have little trouble scoring goals and it will turn into a rout. Head to BetUS sportsbook and take the Tampa Bay Lightning -1½ as they control this game and win it by at least two goals.
Ryan Knuppel has been writing about sports & sports betting topics online for over 15 years. He was a college basketball All-American in the early 2000's and has always had a deep understanding for sports. Ryan was the 2011 Buffalo Wild Wings National "Pickem" Winner which earned him a trip to play flag football with Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders. He was also a 2015 FanDuel.com Playboy Mansion NBA Championships Qualifier in daily fantasy sports. But his true claim to fame is the fact that he has played basketball with and against THE Michael Jordan numerous times in his life. Ryan is excited to be writing and covering sports here and would love to hear from you on social media.