Play with Detroit's Momentum & Pick Red Wings -123 Over Lightning

David Lawrence

Tuesday, October 13, 2015 11:58 AM GMT

The Red Wings are off to a strong start after putting together back-to-back wins over Toronto & Carolina. Should make Detroit our NHL pick when they host East champs?

Momentum
The fact that the Red Wings blew a 3-2 series lead to Tampa Bay in last year’s playoffs combined with that they are coming off consecutive wins to open the season should provide Detroit with plenty of momentum heading in to this matchup. Factor in a home crowd that should be pretty loud for this game and the Red Wings will have plenty of charge to get the job done here.

Meanwhile, Tampa Bay is also coming off consecutive wins to open the season as they’re 3-0-0 to start the year. However, an overtime win over the Philadelphia Flyers wasn’t particularly impressive and they allowed the Buffalo Sabres to hang around for a while before pulling away for a 4-1 win in that game. They did look much better last night in their 6-3 win at Boston where five different players scored goals. However, remember that is a back-to-back situation for them after playing on Monday.

 

Projected Starting Goalies
Ben Bishop has been excellent for Tampa Bay early on and there is no word yet on whether or not he will start against the Red Wings on Tuesday. The Lightning could give youngster Kevin Poulin his first start of the year after he won the backup job in camp but make sure to check back and see which goalie they decide to start.

Meanwhile, Detroit has confirmed that Jimmy Howard will be between the pipes for them on Tuesday night. Howard stopped all 22 shots he faced in a 4-0 win over Toronto and the Red Wings are hoping that he can establish himself as their undoubted No. 1 goalie early on this season.

 

What’s The Pick?
The Red Wings will face a tough test when they clash with the defending Eastern Conference champion Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night. They have a lot to prove heading into their first season without Mike Babcock behind the bench as head coach and new bench boss Jeff Blashill has certainly received rave reviews to this point. Detroit had a 3-2 series lead on Tampa Bay in last year’s conference quarterfinals before dropping back-to-back games to concede the series in seven so they will certainly have some extra motivation for this game.

Howard looked good against Toronto and while this Lightning team will be a much tougher test, there is every reason to buy in to the idea that the Red Wings will be up to the task in this meeting. The goaltending and defense looks solid but perhaps most impressive is an offense that has averaged 4.0 goals per game through its first two wins of the season. They are pretty deep with an intriguing blend of veterans and youth even though Pavel Datsyuk will remain sidelined until at least November with an injury. Henrik Zetterberg, Justin Abdelkader and Tomas Tatar are the known scorers but youngsters Dylan Larkin and Teemu Pulkkinen have pitched in as well early on. Tampa Bay will be playing its second rod game in as many nights and third straight on the road overall so they could be vulnerable on the NHL odds. Take the Red Wings with your NHL picks as they look to avenge last year’s playoff loss and improve to 3-0 on the season.

NHL Pick: Detroit -123 at Bet Marathon

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