With two games of the 2021 Stanley Cup Final in the books, the Tampa Bay Lightning are halfway to clinching their second consecutive NHL championship. While many believe the Lightning to be sitting comfortably, the Montreal Canadiens have shown plenty of resilience during their improbable run to the Cup Final. Friday night sees the action shift to Canada for Game 3. Will home ice prove to be the needed ingredient to help the Habs climb back in this series? This Lightning vs. Canadiens NHL betting picks preview will explore the best NHL betting odds, provide some key betting trends and offer the top NHL picks and NHL betting predictions for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final.
Lightning vs. Canadiens Betting Preview: NHL Picks & Odds
Lightning vs. Canadiens Game Info
Tampa Bay Lightning (36-17-3, 75 pts) vs. Montreal Canadiens (24-21-11, 59 pts)
Date: Friday, July 2, 2021
Start Time: 8 p.m. EST
Venue: Centre Bell — Montreal, QC
Although it simply goes down in the book as another Stanley Cup Final loss, the Canadiens played better in Game 2 than they did in the series opener. One positive takeaway was Nick Suzuki finding the back of the net. After he was one of a few young Canadiens to have a terrific semifinal series, Montreal needs him to get going if they are to climb back into things as NHL betting underdogs. The Habs also raised their level of puck control and physicality in Game 2. Montreal finished with 43 shots on goal compared to just 23 for the Lightning. Unfortunately, it was another shaky effort from goalie Carey Price. After he essentially brought the Canadiens to this point, Montreal cannot afford to have him continue to struggle.
Seeing how the Canadiens put 43 shots on goal, a tip of the cap to Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy is certainly warranted. He outdueled Price once again, finishing with a .977 save percentage in Game 2. Despite the massive discrepancy in shot attempts, Tampa Bay was able to capitalize on the looks they did get. Anthony Cirelli, Blake Coleman and Ondrej Palat were the three goal scorers for the Lightning. After holding serve on their home ice, the Lightning can now set their sights on taking it to the Canadiens north of the border.
[osBestBetsSingleGameOdds league=”nhl” date=”07/02/2021″ team=”lightning”]
Lightning vs. Canadiens Betting NHL Picks + NHL Odds Shopping
Using Awesemo’s OddsShopper Tool, we can easily compare the NHL odds for Lightning vs. Canadiens Stanley Cup Final betting across the major sportsbooks. The odds outlined below are from 9 a.m. ET on July 2, so make sure to check out the OddsShopper tool yourself to get the most up-to-date odds.
Lightning vs. Canadiens NHL Betting Trends
- Lightning are 4-1 straight up in their last five games.
- Canadiens are 5-1 straight up in their last six home games.
- Canadiens are 4-1 straight up in their last five games played on Friday.
- Under has hit in six of the Lightning’s last eight road games.
- Under is 5-1 in the last six Lightning vs. Canadiens head-to-head matchups in Montreal.
- Lightning are 6-0 straight up in their last six head-to-head matchups against the Canadiens.
Lightning vs. Canadiens Prediction
The fight that the Canadiens displayed on Wednesday night was eye opening. The fact that they had 20 more shots on goal than the Lightning was huge. Even in a loss, such a statistical performance has to boost Montreal’s confidence as the Stanley Cup Final shifts to their home rink. If Carey Price can get back to the dominant form he has displayed throughout the postseason, the Habs have a great shot to take Game 3 this evening. They probably will not come all the way back to win this series, but if they are going to get a game and at least attempt to start that comeback, it has to be tonight. Roll with the NHL betting underdog.
Prediction: Canadiens (+116)
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