On the whole, the New York Islanders are considered to be greater than the total sum of their parts. Head coach Barry Trotz commands structure, defense, and fundamentals. Yet in their six-game playoff win over the Bruins, the Islanders lit the lamp bright with regularity.
New York has more goal scoring than anyone cares to admit. But the Isles’ third round matchup against the Tampa Bay Lightning is no bargain. Cause by the defending Stanley Cup champions flashing the deepest lineup of any playoff team. Tampa Bay steamrolled opponents in the first two rounds.
Game 1 of the best of seven series between the New York Islanders and Tampa Bay Lightning will take place on Sunday, June 13, 3 p.m. at AMALIE Arena and on NBC, SN, CBC, TVAS.
NY Islanders vs Tampa Bay Lightning Game 1 Odds
Money Line: NY Islanders +166 | TB Lightning -188 [BET NOW]
Puck Line: Islanders +1.5 -168 | Lightning -1.5 +150 [BET NOW]
Total: 5.5 [BET NOW]
Tampa Bay is going to be a solid betting favorite for Game 1 and to win the series. Casual money will flow to the defending Stanley Cup champions on home ice. Especially after Tampa Bay’s dominant play in the first two rounds. Bargain hunters prefer the Islanders. New York brings more bang for the buck than any other team. Further, oddsmakers will sweeten the pot on the Isles with all of the square money flowing to the Bolts.
New York Islanders
New York is coming off six-game series upset wins over the Pittsburgh Penguins and Boston Bruins. Consider that the Islanders rank second for goal scoring in the NHL Playoffs. Most important of all, the Isles rank second on the board for most money won in the postseason.
Right wing Kyle Palmieri leads the Islanders with seven goals, two assists, and a +9. New York’s four centers are indicative of their strength up the middle. First, Jean Gabriel Pageau has three goals, ten assists, and a +11. Josh Bailey totals five goals, six assists, Brock Nelson brings six goals, four assists, and a +2, and Mathew Barzal adds three goals and six assists.
Goaltenders Semyon Varlamov and Ilya Sorokin split time at the start of the playoffs. But Varlamov took over in the series win over Boston. So far in the playoffs, Varlamov has a .925 save percentage and 2.62 goals against average.
Tampa Bay Lightning
Following a hard-fought first round win over the Florida Panthers, the Lighting gained steam. Tampa Bay took out the Central Division champion Carolina Hurricanes in five games. NHL Playoff metrics show the Lightning ranked 3rd for goals scored. 1st for the power play, and 5th for goals allowed. So too is a ranking of 3rd for money won in the playoffs.
Stanley Cup champion goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy has played the entire playoffs for Tampa Bay. Thus far, Vasilevskiy brings a .934 save percentage and 2.24 goals against average with two shutouts.
Right wing Nikita Kucherov is one of the most complete forwards in the game. To show, Kucherov has five goals, 13 assists, and a +1 in the playoffs. Team captain and center Steven Stamkos brings five goals, eight assists, and a +1. And then center Brayden Point has a team-high eight goals.
NY Islanders vs Tampa Bay Lightning Game 1 Prediction
Our best bet: New York Islanders +166
In this situation, a confident Islanders team will enter Tampa Bay with plenty of momentum. New York fears nobody, nor should they. Above all, the Islanders will get a favorable price. Sharps always like a quality underdog on the road.
Check out today’s NHL odds.