Tampa Bay Runaway Faves
A total mismatch is on the NHL betting docket when the Montreal Canadiens travel to Tampa Bay to take on the Lightning on Saturday night at Amalie Arena.
With these Atlantic Division rivals headed in opposite directions – the Lightning are almost certainly playoff bound while the Canadiens are going back to the drawing board when all is said and done – this game is conspicuously cornered with the hosts in the betting online markets.
Is a Lightning win a foregone conclusion as the NHL odds would have it? Find out as we weigh in and serve up choice NHL predictions and picks for your consideration.
Canadiens Buried in Atlantic
Montreal props up the Atlantic Division with a woeful 27-36-6 record and 60 points from 69 games. The season is practically done for the rebuilding Canadiens as they are left to play out the string.
Most recently, the Habs were left reeling in a bizarre 14-goal thriller by the Florida Panthers on Thursday night. Both teams combined for a record 10 goals in the first period, though the Panthers emerged 7-3 to the good after the first 20 minutes.
From start to finish, Montreal’s camp was a wild mess. They were out of sorts defensively, Nick Suzuki was ejected for a crosscheck and Montreal’s net was a veritable carousel with both Samuel Montembeault and Jake Allen getting pulled.
Canadiens coach Martin St. Louis didn’t have a lot to say after the game was over, nor did many of the players who were still coming to grips with what had just happened.
Kovacevic comes to the defence of Nick Suzuki in front of the benches and all hell breaks loose pic.twitter.com/1qsT2hAZQt
— Scott Matla (@scottmatla) March 17, 2023
Lightning Back On Track
Tampa Bay is third in the Atlantic Division with a 44-21-6 record and 88 points from 69 games. The Lightning are one point behind the second-place Toronto Maple Leafs in the division.
After an uncharacteristic spate of poor results for the Lightning, form appears to be on the up with points from five of their last six games – four wins and an overtime loss. Thus, Tampa Bay improves to a 4-4-2 record in its last 10 games.
Most recently, the Lightning are coming off back-to-back road wins at the expense of the New Jersey Devils. The Lightning defeated the Devils 4-1 on Tuesday night. They then edged them in a 4-3 shootout win to collect maximum points.
Tampa Bay’s offense stepped up this week with the stars leading the way. Steve Stamkos had two goals and an assist in Thursday’s 4-3 win while Nikita Kucherov had an assist on one of Stamkos’ goals. Kucherov also had a goal in Tuesday’s 4-1 win while Alex Killorn’s point streak extended with a goal and an assist over the span of both games as well as scoring the shootout winner.
@Steve_Dangle This is a #HatPick because all Stamkos goals are hatpicks by definition…but okay maybe a #DangIt because it came immediately after the bolts killed off a 5 on 3.https://t.co/zBu8mdh84A
— RajahDDT (@RajahDDT) March 17, 2023
Canadiens vs Lightning Game Injuries
Canadiens vs Lightning Head-to-Head
Montreal is a subpar 2-7-1 versus Tampa Bay in the last 10 games, whereas the Lightning are 8-0-2 over this same stretch. The betting online total has cashed on the under in five of these meetings. The over has cashed in four games and one pushed.
The Lightning beat the Canadiens 5-1 in Montreal on Dec. 17 to take the 1-0 head-to-head series lead this season. They improved to 2-0 versus Montreal with a 4-1 win in Tampa Bay on Dec. 28.
This is the third of four scheduled meetings between these familiar foes. The fourth and final game is scheduled for next Tuesday.
Canadiens vs Lightning Game Information
- Game: Canadiens (27-36-6) vs Lightning (41-21-6)
- Location: Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL
- Day/Time: Saturday, March 18, 7:07 p.m. ET
- Canadiens vs Lightning Live stream: NHL.TV
Canadiens vs Lightning Betting Lines
Canadiens vs Lightning Picks and Prediction
Tampa Bay should win this game and do so handily. Montreal is going to be outmatched in every sense.
Thus, it should come as no surprise at all that the sports betting market is skewed toward the hosts. So much so, however, that the betting value in backing the Lightning’s moneyline odds (see breakdown below) is debatable.
For those looking to back Tampa Bay, the puckline offers better angles for profit where the Lightning are currently nestled on a -1½-point NHL lines with odds juiced to -145
Tampa Bay is listed at -365 in our Vegas lines. So, if you wager $100 on the Lightning, there’s a chance to win $27. Montreal is +305, with a chance to win $305 on a $100 wager.
The implied probability attached to the betting lines gives Tampa Bay a 78.49% chance to win, with the Canadiens at 24.69%.