Predators vs. Lightning: Free Picks, Odds & Predictions

Predators vs Lightning NHL
Nashville vs. Tampa Bay, Bridgestone Arena

It’s been a minor miracle in Nashville over the last month as the Nashville Predators have won 12 of their last 15 games to move into the playoffs in the Central Division. That streak began with a trip to play the Tampa Bay Lightning, who visit Nashville on Tuesday night having handed the Predators one of those three losses during this recent run of success. The Lightning are the defending champions for a reason and are playing well as they ride a two-game winning streak into Tuesday’s contest.

Free Picks

I am consistently giddy at how much the legal sports betting sites in New Jersey undervalue some of the Lightning’s players. Yanni Gourde fits into that mold because he’s a tremendous steal at +280 odds to score a goal Tuesday night despite having 14 already this season. He had scored in five straight games last month then went six games without a point until last week. He had four assists in a win over Columbus than had a goal and an assist in Saturday’s win over Nashville. He’s the type of player that always finds himself in the middle of the action and in position to score goals for Tampa Bay, so with such long odds, he’s a great pick to score again Tuesday.

YANNI GOURDE SCORES GOAL

During their last 15 games, the Predators have lost just three times, being shutout twice and scoring once in the other defeat. Nashville is 10-0 during this streak when it scores at least three goals and 2-3 when it scores two goals or fewer. The Predators will be facing one of the best goalies in the league in Andrei Vasilevskiy and they are doing so without many of their best goal scorers this season. Nashville has scored two goals or fewer in four of their seven meetings with Tampa Bay already this season, and I expect the final regular-season matchup will be similar. The reasonable +220 odds from the hockey betting sites in New Jersey only help add some value to this wager.

NASHVILLE PREDATORS UNDER 1.5 GOALS

A bolder version of me would have taken the alternate odds of the Lightning laying 2.5 goals because five of Tampa Bay’s six wins over Nashville this season have been by at least three goals. However, the Predators are at home and their goaltending duo has performed really well over the last 15 games. As much as I expect Nashville to struggle to score goals, I don’t expect Tampa Bay to score in bunches either. This has the feeling of a game where the Lightning might achieve their multi-goal victory through an empty-net tally at the end. I expected some better odds than the +158 offered by the NHL betting sites in New Jersey, but I think this will be a close game between two confident teams.

TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING -1.5 GOALS

Best Odds

Nashville Tampa Bay
888Sport
+140 -167
FanDuel
+152 -180
BetMGM
+150 -175

Statistics

Head to Head

This is the eighth and final regular-season meeting of the season between Nashville and Tampa Bay as the Lightning have won six of the first seven games between the clubs this year.

Stats

  • Over its last 15 games, Nashville has a team save percentage of .949 and is allowing just 1.67 goals per game while scoring 3.0 per contest. The Predators have allowed three goals just three times during this stretch and killed off 39 of 42 power plays for their opponents.
  • Tampa Bay ranks second in the NHL with 24 regulation victories and a .659 regulation points percentage. The Lightning are one of five teams in the NHL with a points percentage above .700 and they are tied for the league lead with 28 total wins this season.
  • Andrei Vasilevskiy continues to be a brick wall for the Lightning this season with a 2.00 goals against average and .932 save percentage. His save percentage is the best in the league among all qualified goalies and his goals against average is the best among goalies with at least 20 starts this season.
  • With Filup Forsberg out due to injury, Roman Josi leads the Predators with 24 points this season. Calle Jarnkrok is tied with Forsberg for the team lead with 11 goals, but just six players have seven or more goals this season for the Predators, and two of the players with double-digit goals won’t be in the lineup Tuesday night.

Our Prediction for Nashville vs. Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay Lightning to win

The Tampa Bay Lightning have won six of the seven meetings thus far with the Nashville Predators and many of them have not been particularly close. While the Predators’ only win against the Lightning this season did trigger this streak of 12 wins in their last 15 games, one of those losses was a 3-0 shutout at home to Tampa Bay. Nashville has survived a plethora of injuries to sit int that final spot in the playoffs, but the Predators are not good enough to defeat any of the top-three teams in the Central Division. Tampa Bay should continue their roll with an easy road win.

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Josh Walfish is an award-winning journalist who has been covering college and professional sports in the United States. He holds a journalism degree from Northwestern University and his work has appeared in the Miami Herald, Chicago Sun-Times and Providence Journal. He most recently chronicled the UMass hockey teams rise to prominence over the last two years for the local newspaper

All Reviews by Josh Walfish

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