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Lightning versus Canadiens NHL hockey betting preview

Montreal Canadiens vs. Tampa Bay Lightning NHL hockey betting preview

Time: 7:35 PM

Venue: Bell Centre

Sportsbook hockey betting odds:

Lightning +1½ (-255) 5 (-135) +120

Canadiens -1½ (+215) 5 (+115) -140

Tampa Bay

Previous game: The Lightning pulled within three points of the Maple Leafs in the Eastern Conference wild card hunt when Tampa Bay defeated Toronto 4-1 on Thursday. Brayden Point scored two goals, and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 26 saves. It was sink-or-swim for the Lightning, as a Maple Leafs win would have clinched for Toronto and eliminated Tampa Bay. The Lightning must unlock must-win mode tonight as well.

Recent form: Tampa Bay has won six of the last eight games, but has lost two of the last four – including a 1-2 overtime loss to the Canadiens on Saturday. Furthermore, the Lightning has won six of the last seven road games.

News: Captain Steve Stamkos won’t be returning tonight or for the two remaining games of the regular season. To make matters worse for Tampa Bay, center Tyler Johnson – who had played only two games following a lower-body injury – aggravated said injury on Tuesday against the Bruins. Head coach Jon Cooper was noncommittal as to whether Johnson would play tonight. In light of this, the Lightning has recalled Cory Conacher and Michael Bournival from the Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League. Gabriel Dumont is expected to return after taking time for the birth of his second child.

Hockey betting odds trends: Tampa Bay looks good when it comes to covering the spread, going 4-1 ATS in the last five games and 4-2 ATS in the last six games on the road. However, they are 1-6 against the spread in the last seven games against the Canadiens. The NHL hockey betting total has gone under in six of the Lightning’s last seven road games.


Previous game: The Canadiens had a five-game winning streak snapped by the Sabres on Wednesday. Goalie Carey Price made 28 saves. Montreal secured the first place in the Atlantic Division on Monday and will meet the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference First Round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Recent form: The Canadiens have won five of their last six games as well as the last four straight home games, and six of the last seven against the Lightning, including four of the last five times Montreal has hosted Tampa Bay.

News: Shea Weber has missed the last two games with a lower-body injury and is expected to sit this one out as well; Jordie Benn has not played since March 28th, and Alexei Emelin left Wednesday’s game with a lower-body injury. Lest they ran out of defensemen, the Canadiens recalled Brett Lernout on an emergency basis from the St. John’s IceCaps of the AHL.

Hockey betting odds trends: Montreal has covered the spread in four of the last six games overall and in four of the last six home games. The NHL hockey betting total has gone under in five of the Canadiens’ last six games.