The regular season in the NHL comes to a close on Sunday, with some things yet to be decided on the ice. The Maple Leafs were looking for a playoff clincher last night over the Lightning, but Tampa spoiled the party and will make Leaf fans sweat it out. The last win can sometimes be the hardest.
The Lightning kept their heart beating with the win, as they’re currently 3 points behind the Leafs for the final wildcard. The Islanders are also 3 points behind, leading to what could be a close call if Toronto can’t find another win in the remaining days of the regular season.
The Canadiens are playing for nothing, other than keeping their composure and playing quality hockey going in the postseason. No team wants to go in cold, so the Habs are looking to keep their legs underneath them and avoid a slump.
Montreal won five in a row before a loss to the Sabres, so the Canadiens are looking right as inch closer to the playoffs. They have already clinched the Atlantic after pulling away from the Senators. A lot is on the line for the Bolts tonight, not so much for the Habs. We’ll see if it makes a difference. Get our free Lightning vs. Canadiens pick below.
Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Montreal Canadiens Pick
Last year was a throwaway year for the Canadiens. After Carey Price was injured early in the regular season, everything went down the tubes for them. Price has been able to stay on the ice here in 2016-17, and the positive results have come back for the Canadiens.
They’re 46-25-7 and winners of the Atlantic. Still, there isn’t much buzz around this team when it comes to making it far in the playoffs. When you’re playing in a conference that features the Penguins and Capitals, yeah it’s tough to get some recognition. Additionally, here’s a Canadiens team who have faltered in the playoffs before with a similar record.
With Price between the pipes, the Canadiens are 4th in the NHL with regards to goals against per game, 2.40 goals. That’s the difference the Canadiens are hoping they can ride in the playoffs.
Price will have to get hot, which we all know he is capable of doing. They’ve allowed an average of only 1.3 goals per game across their last six games. Do that in a playoff series, and there will be some good things that’ll follow. I see a game here that should have a total of 5, not 5 with a hook. It may dip to 5, as I am writing this during the opening line on the game. In other words, a pick on the UNDER 5.5 doesn’t look like a bad option for Friday night in the NHL.
PICK: UNDER 5.5 GOALS (-130)