According to NHL betting odds Ottawa is a -120 money line home favorite and the posted total is 5.5. The Senators are 26-5 in their last 31 home games versus the Lightning. These clubs have seen 7 of their last 10 meetings in Ottawa stay under the total.
A Pleasant Surprise
There weren’t a lot of NHL experts that could stake claim they predicted before the season started, that the Tampa Bay Lightning would be in the position they’re currently in. Tampa Bay enters today 2nd in the Atlantic Division just 4-points behind the Boston Bruins, and are 3rd overall in the Eastern Conference. One of the biggest bright spots among many for the Lightning this season, has been the play of goaltender Ben Bishop. Bishop is 26-11 versus the money line in 37 starts with an outstanding 1.99 GAA, an excellent .933 save percentage, and has earned 4 shutouts. Their accomplishments to this point have been even more impressive considering the fact they’ve been without their star player Steven Stamkos who’s been sidelined for close to 3 months now with a broken leg. Stamkos is back skating, and is on schedule to return sometime in early February.
Back in the Hunt
The Senators have recovered nicely from a horrible start to the season. Currently they find themselves in a 3-way tie for 10th overall in the Eastern Conference. However, they’re just 1-point behind both Detroit and Carolina for the final playoff position in the East. The Senators return home tonight after completing a 4-game in 8-day road trip, in which they earned 5 of 8-points possible. Their stay at home will be a brief one. Following tonight they will embark on a 3-game in 4-day road trip beginning on Saturday at Toronto. Ottawa has gone over the total just twice in their last 8-games following a road trip of 7-days or more.
This is a Tampa Bay team that’s been solid on the road this season. As a matter of fact the Lightning has gone 9-3 in their last 12 versus the money line on the road. Contrarily the Senators have been less than stellar at home this year going 11-16 versus the money line at the Canadian Tire Centre, including going 5-10 in their last 15. My lean here goes to the road underdog.
Free Pick: Tampa Bay +100 over Ottawa