Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Florida Panthers - 12/23/19 NHL Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Photo by Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Florida Panthers (18-12-5) at Tampa Bay Lightning (17-13-4)
NHL Hockey: Monday, December 23, 2019 at 7:00 pm (Amalie Arena)
The Line: Tampa Bay Lightning -160 / Florida Panthers +141 --- Over/Under: 6.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds
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The Florida Panthers and the Tampa Bay Lightning meet in NHL action from the Amalie Arena on Monday night.
The Florida Panthers will look to build on their three-game winning streak after a 4-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes in their last outing. Evgenii Dadonov opened the scoring 7:07 into the game for the Cats and the Panthers would double the lead just after the midway point of the 2nd period thanks to Brian Boyle. Jonathan Huberdeau made it 3-0 Florida just :26 into the 3rd before Carolina pulled a goal back just before the midway point of the 3rd period. Noel Acciari restored the three-goal lead just 1:25 later but Carolina would pull it back to 4-2 with just over seven minutes to play. The Panthers would slam the door shut on Carolina the rest of the way, holding on for the win. Chris Driedger got the win to improve to 2-1-0 on the year after stopping 42 of 44 shots faced in the winning effort.
The Tampa Bay Lightning will look to rebound from back-to-back losses after a 3-1 loss to Washington last time out. The game was scoreless through the opening 20 minutes before Washington took the lead less than five minutes into the 2nd period. That 1-0 score would hold through the 2nd and the early part of the 3rd before Nikita Kucherov tied the game at one at the midway point of the 3rd period. Washington would re-take the lead with just over six minutes to go and ice the win with an empty-netter with just over two minutes to play in the game. Curtis McElhinney took the loss, falling to 3-4-2 on the year after giving up two goals on 34 shots faced in the losing effort.
Florida is 13-3 in their last 16 Monday games and 1-4 in their last 5 games playing on 1 days rest while the under is 5-1 in their last 6 games following a win. Tampa Bay in their last 46-12 in their last 58 division games and 78-36 in their last 114 home games over is 19-7-1 in their last 27 games playing on 1 days rest. Florida is 1-8 in the last 9 meetings between these two teams and 5-16 in the last 21 meetings between these two teams in Tampa Bay.
Part of me wants to take the Panthers and the plus money as Tampa Bay has been inconsistent all season and the prices haven’t really reflected that as the prices were looking like the prices we’d see with last year’s Lightning team that won the President’s trophy. However, this line is a bit more reasonable, and almost feels like it’s worth taking given how the Lightning have owned Florida over the years. Tampa Bay has owned the rest of the division dating back some time now, and I think that continues here and to get the price down a bit, I’ll back the Lightning in regulation here.