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Lightning vs. Panthers: NHL Picks and Prediction

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Lightning vs. Panthers: NHL Picks and Prediction
Fredrik Claesson #3 of the Tampa Bay Lightning pursues Jonathan Huberdeau #11 of the Florida Panthers. Joel Auerbach/Getty Images/AFP

With both these teams heading into the final game of the season there is still something left to play for. Home advantage in the first round of the playoffs, where these two teams will meet again. Who can come out on top in this one and claim that advantage, although with the full set of spectators not being allowed to the game is it really that much of an advantage? The opening line for this match was Tampa Bay at -137.

Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Florida Panthers

Monday, May 10, 2021 – 7:00PM EDT at BB&T Center

Preview

This so called “rivalry” has never actually become a heated rivalry and amazingly this will be the first time these two teams meet in the playoffs after almost 30 years of being in the league together. With that being said there is something to play for tonight as these teams have a one game shootout to see who has the home advantage in their playoff series which begins within the next two weeks. At the time of writing the Panthers have a 4-3 record over the lightning in the regular season. Florida need just 1 point to secure 2nd place in the division and home advantage.

Tampa Bay have been struggling massively with injuries to key players and this could be why their recent form has slipped to just two wins in their previous five NHL games. Their will be no Nikita Kucherov, Victor Hedman or Steven Stamkos playing in tonight’s game, which is easily three of their best players. Their best of the rest players haven’t been stepping up to the plate either as Ondrej Palat and Anthony Cirelli have only managed a combined 17 points in their previous 10 games. Minus the 5 points Palat received against the Blue Jackets and the stats look worse with just 12 in 10 games.

Elsewhere Florida’s top guys have been playing like their life depends on it. Huberdeau has racked up 9 points in his last 5 games whilst Aleksander Barkov has picked up 8 in his last 5 games. During the Panthers five game winning streak they have averaged just over 5.0 goals per game and a whopping 42 shots per game.

Trends should never be your main source of information when it comes to making your NHL picks, they are merely guidelines and mostly irrelevant information, but nonetheless can be interesting to read.

Tampa Bay Lightning

  • Tampa Bay are 12-5 in their last 17 games against Florida.
  • The total has gone over in 11 of Tampa Bay's last 16 games on the road.
  • Tampa Bay are 6-3 in their last 9 games against an opponent in the Central Division.

Florida Panthers

  • Florida are 5-0 in their last 5 games.
  • The total has gone over in 4 of Florida's last 5 games against an opponent in the Central conference.
  • Florida are 10-1 in their last 11 games at home.

What Are The Betting Odds and Current Lines?

  • The Tampa Bay Lightning opened up the moneyline at -137 but we have seen a BIG shift in what way the public are thinking and betting as they are now best priced at +105.
  • Florida Panthers have drifted from +110 to -120 with the best online sportsbooks.
  • The puck line odds are very interesting as both teams are currently +215 on the -1.5 handicap in this game. If you wish to bet either team at +1.5 on the puck line the best odds, we could find was -265 with Intertops (visit our Intertops Review) there is absolutely zero value on betting either of these teams in this market.
  • The total line opened up at 6.0 but has since shortened half a point into 5.5. If you are looking to bet the over it is currently priced up at -130 with BetOnline, whilst the under is -105.

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Prediction

We don’t believe the Lighting will be able to compete with this Panthers team who are firing on all cylinders right now and red hot in front of the net. With that being said we missed the boat on the Panthers plus money. If you can get them at plus money, we would advise taking that bet. The Lighting haven’t got all their resources but also will want to bounce back from this 2 game loosing streak before the playoffs, hence the reason we wouldn’t take the Panthers at their current -120 odds.

The over 5.5 is also very tempting and we believe should cash tonight as the previous 7 games between these teams have witnessed a whopping 7 goals per game on average, including 6 and 8 goals in the previous 2 matchups. Both teams will look to get some momentum going before the playoffs begin which will make for free flowing hockey and cash this over 5.5 goals total.

NHL pick: Over 5.5 Goals at -130 with BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

Over 5.5 Goals (-130)
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*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.