Free NHL Hockey Prediction: Canadiens vs Lightning NHL Odds
Looking for Montreal Canadiens vs. Tampa Bay Lightning free hockey plays & NHL Odds? NHL betting sees the Lightning taking on the Canadiens on Monday, June 28th, 2021 at Amalie Arena in Tampa. Cappers Picks provides complimentary expert handicapping picks on all NHL Hockey games all season long so stay tuned for more FREE daily NHL hockey predictions like this Lightning Canadiens matchup.
NHL Handicapping Analysis
2021 Stanley Cup Finals Game 1
(24-21-11) (12-5) Montreal Canadiens vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (12-6) (36-17-3)
Date: Monday, June 28th, 2021
Time: 8:00pm ET
Venue: Amalie Arena in Tampa Bay, Florida
NHL Hockey Moneyline Odds: Canadiens +175 Lightning -208
NHL Hockey Puck Line Odds: Canadiens +1.5 -125 Lightning -1.5 +135
NHL Betting Total: 5.5
Monday night will bring us game 1 of the Stanley Cup final. Tampa will be looking to repeat as champions, while Montreal will attempt to end their nearly 30 year cup drought.
The Canadiens come into this series the underdog, and understandably so. They finished 18th in the league after the regular season, and most likely would have missed the play-offs entirely if it weren’t for the division shuffling that occurred in response to the pandemic.
With that in mind, this team looks nothing like they did in the regular season. They have been dominant since game 5 of their first round series against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
One key addition to their line-up has been young super star, Cole Caufield. Caufield played most of this season with the University of Wisconsin, and got called up to the show for only 10 regular season games. Now in the play-offs, he sits third on the team in scoring.
Another factor in Montreal’s success is the resurgence of Carey Price. The veteran goaltender seems to consistently find another gear during the play-offs, and after a mediocre regular season, Price has posted a .934 save percentage in these play-offs.
Those goaltending numbers are very good, but don’t be fooled into thinking Carey Price is singlehandedly dragging this team through round after round. The team in front of him is playing fantastic defensive hockey. Lead by Phillip Danault, the Habs have been able to completely neutralize the top lines of opposing teams. Tampa will be their greatest test yet with star players like Nikita Kucherov and Brayden Point.
Tampa Bay Lightning
The Tampa Bay Lightning look even stronger this year than when they won the cup last year. They have made it this far on the backs of elite star forwards, and excellent goaltending. Tampa also underperformed in the regular season, but that is most likely due to them missing Nikita Kucherov, who returned for game 1 of the play-offs.
Kucherov is scoring at a ridiculous pace. after 18 games played, he has 27 points, leading the league in play-off points by a mile. Unfortunately for Tampa, the long series against the Islanders might have taken it’s toll on Kucherov, as he received a nasty cross check that forced him to leave the game.
He would return in the next game, but we won’t know if he is playing injured until it’s all said and done. Aside from Kucherov, the lightning still have some deadly offensive weapons. Brayden Point has 20 points so far in these play-offs, and Alex Killorn and Steven Stamkos are not far behind with 17 each. It will be a challenge for Montreal to neutralize these battle hardened forwards.
At the other end of the ice, Andrei Vasilevskiy continues to dominate, with a .936 save percentage so far in these play-offs. The presumptive Vezina winner will attempt to neutralize Montreal’s opportunistic scorers. If he can keep his composure during odd man rushes, it might make the difference in this series.
NHL Betting Trends
- Montreal are 11-2 SU in their last 13 games.
- Montreal are 1-9 SU in their last 10 games against Tampa Bay.
- Montreal are 6-1 SU in their last 7 games on the road.
- Tampa Bay are 9-4 SU in their last 13 games.
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Tampa Bay’s last 6 games against Montreal.
- Tampa Bay are 4-1 SU in their last 5 games at home.
Free Montreal Canadiens vs Tampa Bay Lightning NHL Prediction:
I think Montreal is being underestimated for the 4th time in these play-offs, and while taking them on the moneyline is tempting, I want to see how the teams match up before I make that bet. I’ll be taking the over for game 1. Good luck!
4* Free NHL Betting Pick: Over 5.5 +135
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