New Jersey Devils vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Free Preview

The New Jersey Devils and the Tampa Bay Lightning battle at Amalie Arena in Game 1 of the postseason’s first round. Sportsnet will showcase the matchup, which gets underway at 7 p.m. ET on Thursday, April 12.

New Jersey Devils at Tampa Bay Lightning Odds

Tampa Bay (-215) is currently favored over New Jersey (+180), and the oddsmakers have set the Over/Under (O/U) at an even 6 goals (-130 for the over, +110 for the under).

Tampa Bay is 54-28 straight up (SU) and has earned 8.0 units for moneyline bettors this season. That winning percentage, ranked first in the league in this young season, is an improvement over the 42-40 record from the 2016-17 season campaign. Of its 82 games this season, 49 have gone over the total, while 31 have gone under and just two have pushed. This season, the team is 29-12 SU at home.

The Lightning have been able to convert on 24.0 percent of their power play chances this year, a mark that places them in the top-5 among NHL teams. On the other hand, their penalty kill is ranked 28th overall, and they’ve successfully killed off 76.0 percent of all penalties.

The Lightning, as a collective unit, have been whistled for penalties 4.1 times per game overall this season, and 3.4 per game over their last five at home. The team’s had to kill penalties for just 6.8 minutes per game over their last five home outings.

With a .920 save percentage and 29.4 saves per game, Andrei Vasilevskiy (44-21-3) has been the best option in goal for Tampa Bay this year. If Tampa Bay decides to give him the night off, however, head coach Jon Cooper might go with Louis Domingue (7-12-12 record, .894 save percentage, 3.41 goals against average).

Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos will both lead the charge for the Lightning. Kucherov (100 points) is up to 39 goals and 61 assists and has recorded multiple points in 31 different games this year. Stamkos has 27 goals and 59 assists to his name and has notched at least one point in 52 contests.

On the other side of the rink, New Jersey is 44-38 straight up (SU) and has earned moneyline bettors 12.9 units this season. Through 82 regular season matches, 42 of its games have gone over the total, while 38 have gone under and just two have pushed. The Devils are 21-20 SU as the road team this season.

The Devils have converted on 21.4 percent of their power play chances this season, a figure that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked eighth overall and it’s successfully killed off 81.8 percent of all penalties.

New Jersey’s players have been called for penalties 3.7 times per game this season, and 3.0 per game over their past ten outings. The team has been forced to defend opponent power plays just 6.3 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Cory Schneider (27.9 saves per game) has been the main option in goal for New Jersey. Schneider has 18 wins, 22 losses, and six OT losses to his credit, and has registered a .907 save percentage and 2.93 goals against average this year.

Taylor Hall (39 goals, 54 assists) will pace the attack for the visiting Devils.

New Jersey Devils vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Betting Predictions

NHL Tip: SU Winner – Lightning, O/U – Under

Betting Notes

  • The total has gone under in three of Tampa Bay’s last five games.
  • The majority (57.4 percent) of Tampa Bay’s wins have come by two or more goals and the team is 31-17 overall in such games. 19 of New Jersey’s 44 wins (43.2 percent) have been decided by two or more goals.