Our very own NHL consultant provides us with a betting preview on Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Playoff series between Tampa Bay and Montreal. Included in this informative and convincing analysis is a selection on the total.
Habs “Still Alive and Well
The Montreal Canadiens will entertain the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 5 of their Eastern Conference Semifinal series on Saturday at 7:05 PM ET. According to the NHL betting odds at Bookmaker, Montreal is a -125 money line favorite, and the posted total is 5.0. The Canadiens were able to stay alive in this series by virtue of a 6-2 road win in Game 4. The Montreal win also snapped a streak of eight straight defeats this season at the hands of Tampa Bay. These Atlantic Division rivals have seen six of those nine meetings go over the total.
After being a brick wall in the first three games of this series, Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop proved to be a mere mortal in Game 4. Bishop was pulled from the game early in the second period after allowing three goals on just fourteen shots. Bishop has gone 18-10-2 over the total on the road this season, and compiled an average .910 save percentage in those outings.
The Lightning power play is converting on a stellar 27.3% of their man advantage opportunities during its previous five games. In their nine meetings versus Montreal this season, Tampa Bay is averaging a robust 3.7 goals per game. The Lightning has gone over the total in seven of eight this season, following a loss by three or more, and there were a combined average of 6.7 goals per game scored.
The good news for the Montreal Canadiens is that they have one of the premier goaltenders on the planet with Carey Price. The bad news, Price has posted a less than impressive .882 save percentage in this series, and that’s a far cry from his season average of .932. In his nine starts overall against Tampa Bay during the 2014-2015 NHL campaign Price has been very beatable, evidenced by his below standard .897 save percentage in those outings.
Montreal had gone seven straight games of scoring two goals or less before lighting the lamp six times on Thursday. It certainly seemed like no fluke since the Canadiens were able apply relentless offensive pressure for the entire game. Going back to Game 3, Montreal has been the much better team in this series during the last five periods played.
NHL Totals Betting System
The Tampa Bay Lightning having a combined winning percentage this season of .613 in the regular season and playoffs. They also sustained a 6-2 home loss to Montreal in Game 4 of this series. At the time of this writing, the posted total in this game was 5.0. The combination of all these statistical factors fits a terrific totals betting angle which I find pertinent when making my NHL picks on Saturday.
Any road team (Tampa Bay) with a total of 5.0, playing with same season revenge stemming from a road loss by four goals or more, and has a better than .500 winning percentage on the season, resulted in the road team going 51-21 (70.8%) over the total since1996.
NHL Pick: Tampa Bay and Montreal to go over the total of 5.0.