Columbus Blue Jackets at Tampa Bay Lightning - 8/11/20 NHL Picks and Prediction
Photo by Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Columbus Blue Jackets (36-23-16) at Tampa Bay Lightning (45-22-6)
NHL Hockey: Tuesday, August 11, 2020 at 3:00 pm (Scotiabank Arena)
The Line: Tampa Bay Lightning -190 / Columbus Blue Jackets +165 --- Over/Under: 5.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds
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The Columbus Blue Jackets and the Tampa Bay Lightning meet in game one of their Eastern Conference quarter-final series in NHL action from Scotiabank Arena on Tuesday night.
The Columbus Blue Jackets punched their ticket to the quarter-finals after upending the Toronto Maple Leafs in the only qualifying series to go five games after taking the winner-take-all game by a final score of 3-0 on Sunday. Pierre-Luc Dubois leads the Blue Jackets with three goals, all coming in his hat trick during game three’s comeback win while Cam Atkinson has two goals and three assists for a team-high 5 points with 13 shots in the opening series while Zach Werenski has a team-high 16 shots through the first round of the postseason. Joonas Korpisalo had a 2-1 record in goal with a 1.45 GAA and a .956 save percentage with a pair of shutouts in the opening round, including one in game one and the shutout in the all-deciding game five.
The Tampa Bay Lightning finished with the second seed in the East after finishing with a 2-1 record in the round-robin seeding portion of the opening round after failing to get the top seed by virtue of their 4-1 loss to Philadelphia in their last game. Tyler Johnson led the Bolts with two goals and an assist for a share of the team –high with 3 points while Alex Killorn and Brayden Point each had a goal and two assists in the round-robin tournament. Nikita Kucherov and Mitch Stephens each had a goal as well with Kucherov logging a team-high 10 shots in the three-game portion of the opening round. Andrei Vasikevskiy started all three games in goal for Tampa Bay, posting a 2-1 record with a 2.29 GAA and a .921 save percentage.
Columbus is 4-9 in their last 13 games as an underdog and 6-14 in their last 20 games overall while the under is 51-22-5 in their last 78 games following a win. Tampa Bay is 1-6 in their last 7 games as a favorite and 41-12 in their last 53 games against a team with a losing record while the under is 4-0 in their last 4 games overall. Columbus is 4-1 in the last 5 meetings between these two teams.
I expect this to be a hard-hitting series between two teams that really don’t like each other. Columbus is one of the smallest market teams in the NHL and feel that they get no respect, while Tampa Bay is a perennial contender that has revenge on their minds after Columbus swept them from the postseason last year despite having the 2nd-most points in a season in NHL history. With that said, I think we see some offensive fireworks to kick off the first round, so I’ll take the over as my free pick for this game, but my stronger play is on the side and that’s available as a premium pick that you can find here.