NHL Picks: Secure A Win Behind Islanders At Home Against Lightning

Ross Benjamin

Tuesday, May 3, 2016 3:00 PM GMT

Our NHL analyst breaks down Tuesday’s playoff contest between the Lightning and Islanders. Go inside before making any of your NHL picks today to be sure you make an informed decision.

Tampa Bay/NY Islanders Preview for Game 2
The Lightning and Islanders resume their Eastern Conference Semifinal series on Tuesday at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The series is all knotted up at 1-1 after the teams split the first two games in Tampa Bay. Current NHL betting odds indicate the Islanders are a +103 money line home underdog, and the posted total is 5.

 

Head to Head Season Review
The Islanders came away with a 5-3 win in Game 1, and Tampa Bay rebounded for a 4-1 victory in Game 2. Tampa held a huge territorial advantage during the first two games of the series, evidenced by a combined 67-42 shots on goal advantage.

Counting the playoffs, these teams have squared off five times this season, and the Islanders won on three of those occasions. New York has a substantial special team edge over Tampa Bay during those five encounters. The Islanders have gone 5-17 (29.4%) on its power play chances, and Tampa Bay is a dismal 1-18 (5.6%) with their man advantage opportunities.

After being pulled from the game in the series opener, Ben Bishop was solid in Game 2 by stopping 19 of 20 New York Islanders shots on goal. However, Bishop’s terrible .844 save percentage during five starts against the Islanders this season certainly qualifies as a concern. Thomas Greiss has also started all five games in this head to head series versus Tampa Bay, and compiled a somewhat average .907 save percentage.


 

Home Ice Advantage
The Islanders are a very respectable 27-17 (.614) on home ice this season. During their only meeting at the Barclays Center against Tampa they came away with a convincing 5-2 win. The Islanders goaltender Thomas Greiss has gone a stellar 16-8 during 24 starts at home with a very good .928 save percentage. New York will be looking to generate more offense on Tuesday after scoring just 1 goal during their Game 2 loss. They’ve gone an outstanding 16-6 this season following a game in which they scored 1 goal or less. Additionally, Tampa Bay is 2-7 this season after a home win by 3 goals or more.

 

Final Take and Pick
The unavailability of Steven Stamkos, J.T. Brown, and Anton Stralman will catch up to Tampa Bay at some point, and that’s more likely to show up on the road than at home. On the other hand, the Islanders are about as healthy as a team can be at this latter stage of the season. I’m siding with the home team for one of my Tuesday NHL picks.

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Free NHL Pick:  Islanders +103
Best Line Offered: at Heritage