Free Picks: Florida Panthers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

Florida vs Tampa Bay NHL
Florida Panthers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning, NHL, BB&T Center

For a team that manages to keep opposing offenses at bay, Tampa allowed 5 goals to the Panthers already this season. Was it a fluke? The Lightning are known for their tremendous adjustments, which should be illustrated tonight against Florida. As for the Panthers, they look to continue their dominance in consecutive games against their rival.

Can the Panthers stun in the battle of Florida?

Remember the days when the Panthers were considered laughing stocks of the NHL? No one in their right mind would toss money on the Panthers’ money line and they certainly wouldn’t be a popular selection here on BetPicks.

With that being said, times have changed and so have the Panthers. Entering tonight’s contest with their State rival, the Florida Panthers are second in the Central Division, one point behind the Lightning with a game in hand.

Tampa Bay enters this battle trying to right the ship after a loss to Florida earlier this week, in a game where the Panthers won convincingly. The Lightning’s longest losing skid of the season is 2 games so far. Will the Lightning match their losing skid with a loss tonight?

Scoring 5 against Tampa Bay doesn’t happen often. Only twice this season has that happened. Statistically speaking, on average the Lightning allows 1 or 2 goals to their opponent. They have not tallied a shutout this season. This stat has the gears in my mind turning for this NHL prediction.

Both teams are highly regarded on defense. Tampa Bay owns the best goals against per game and has the least goals allowed in the NHL, but the Panthers are right on their tails in that regard. Florida is ranked 6th in goals against.

I am really liking the under in this contest. Steven Stamkos was just added to the NHL’s COVID-19 list, which has altered NHL regular season odds. On top of that, the Panthers aren’t considered a high-scoring team.

When a low scoring team squares off against a defensive-minded squad, goals are hard to come by. Yes, I know earlier this week the Panthers managed 5 against Tampa Bay. But that was a clear anomaly. There is a reason Tampa Bay’s defense is considered elite. If the Panthers score 5 goals (again) against Tampa Bay (with Andrei Vasilevskiy in net) I will eat my words. I’m not afraid to admit it.

Before wagering on this bet, take a look to see who gets the nod in the blue paint for both squads. Under the assumption that both starting goalies are rolling, I am all in for the under.

Stats

  • The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Florida’s last 8 games.
  • Florida is 2-9 SU in last 11 games against Tampa Bay.
  • Tampa Bay are 6-1 SU in last 7 games.
  • The OVER has cashed in 6 of Tampa’s last 7 games playing on the road against Florida.

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have always wanted to be a writer and sports are my favorite thing in the world, so I combined the two to make a career. I have been a long-time gambler and sports betting writer that isn't afraid to look at the underdog or specials. I am covering the NHL, MLB and NCAA Football for BetPicks.ca and am a huge fan of both sports - as well as many others. Follow me on Twitter @Patrick_Trudeau so we can talk betting, sports, or why ketchup DOES belong on Poutine.

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