Free NHL Hockey Prediction: Flames vs Lightning NHL Odds
Looking for Calgary Flames vs. Tampa Bay Lightning free hockey plays & NHL Odds? NHL betting sees the Flames taking on the Lightning on Thursday, February 23rd at Amalie Arena in Tampa. Cappers Picks provides complimentary expert handicapping picks on all NHL Hockey matchups all season long so stay tuned for more FREE daily NHL hockey predictions.
(29-26-4) Calgary Flames vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (26-24-8)
Date: Thursday, February 23rd
Time: 7:30 PM EST
Venue: Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL
NHL Hockey Moneyline Odds: Lightning -140
NHL Hockey Puck Line Odds: OFF
NHL Betting Total: 5.5
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The Tampa Bay Lightning and Calgary Flames are both very much alive in their respective playoff races with the regular drawing closer to an end.
With two important points on the line for both teams, this Thursday night tilt presents an interesting matchup with the playoffs only six weeks away.
The Flames were expected to be much more competitive this season after signing Brian Elliott to bolster their goaltending, but that hasn’t been the case. Instead of contending for the Pacific Division crown, the Flames have played mediocre all season long.
The high-flying offense we saw last season with Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan hasn’t been nearly as effective, another reason why Calgary is fighting for its playoff life.
The Flames come into this game ranked 19th in goals (2.54 per game), whereas last season they were in the top-10 the entire time.
To make matters worse, Elliott, who was phenomenal in St. Louis, has been a total bust in Calgary.
He’s only 12-13-3 with a 2.76 GAA and a save percentage of .898. He’s been outplayed by backup netminder Chad Johnson, who’s proven to be a better goalie than Elliott.
With two critical points on the line, can the Flames get it done against a resurgent Tampa Bay team?
Tampa Bay Lightning
While the Lightning have struggled with the absence of star forward Steven Stamkos for most of the season, they’ve started to find their groove at the perfect time.
Despite being in 7th in the Atlantic Division, Tampa Bay is only five points out of a playoff spot. The team has gotten a boost from goaltender Ben Bishop, who’s won his last four starts by allowing a combined five goals in those starts.
Though he’s only 15-12-3 with a 2.60 GAA this season, he has the playoff experience to help lead the Lightning to the postseason if they can get their offense together.
It’s hard to score goals when your best player isn’t on the ice, but Tampa Bay needs help from its other playmakers going forward.
Viktor Hedman, who ranks 2nd on the team with 48 points, is tied for 5th in the NHL with 38 assists.
He’s recorded seven points over his last five games and will look to lead the Tampa Bay charge with Nikita Kucherov as the season winds down.
NHL Betting Trends:
- Flames are 5-7 SU in their last 12 games.
- Flames are 11-11-1 vs. the Eastern Conference.
- Lightning are 14-10-2 at home.
- Ben Bishop is 4-0 in his last 4 starts.
Free Calgary Flames vs. Tampa Bay Lightning NHL Hockey Prediction:
While neither one of these teams is playing stand-out hockey, the Lightning have the better goaltending.
Ben Bishop is playing like the Ben Bishop who led the Lightning to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2015, something Tampa Bay has desperately needed all season.
4* Free NHL Betting Pick: Tampa Bay ML
The Flames are more alive in the West than the Lightning are in the East, but I think Tampa Bay will be anxious for a win in front of their home crowd in this one.
NHL Free Score Prediction: Tampa Bay 3 – Calgary 2
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