Calgary Flames (22-16-4) at Tampa Bay Lightning (31-9-3)
NHL: Thursday, January 11, 2018 at 7:30 PM ET (Amalie Arena)
Goalies: Mike Smith (18-13-3, 2.55 GAA) vs Andrei Vasilevskiy (27-6-2, 2.10 GAA)
Line & Odds: Calgary Flames +175/Tampa Bay Lightning -190 — Over/Under: 5.5
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The Calgary Flames visit the Amalie Arena as they set to face off against the Tampa Bay Lightning this Thursday night.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have continued their dominance on the NHL. They are currently the best team in the NHL with 65 points and are 12 points ahead of the 2nd place Boston Bruins in the Atlantic division. Tampa Bay have won two straight games and are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games. The Lightning are led by the dynamic duo of winger Nikita Kucherov and center Steven Stamkos. Kucherov has been one of the best players in the league if not the best with an NHL-leading 60 points (27 goals and 33 assists) while Stamkos hasn’t been far behind with 52 points (17 goals and 35 assists), which is tied for second in the NHL. The Lightning are the top offensive team in the NHL as they average 3.67 goals per game (1st in NHL), 11.1% shooting (1st in NHL), 33.2 shots on goal (8th in NHL) and their 24.7 power play % (3rd in NHL). The struggles they face have mainly been on the defensive end as they allow 31.6 shots on goal (T12th in NHL) and kill 79.9 of opponent penalties (20th in NHL). However, having the no. 1 goalie in the game in Vasilevskiy has helped a bit as they allow just 2.44 goals per game (2nd in NHL). Also what makes this team so strong is how deep they are as defenders Victor Hedman and Anton Stralman have been excellent as they currently have the first (+24) and third (+22) best plus/minus in the NHL.
The Calgary Flames have had an up and down season and have not been able to sustain any level of play for longer then five games. Calgary inconsistencies begin with their offense as they average 2.76 goals per game (T20th in NHL), 8.4% shooting (22nd in NHL) and score on 17.1% of their power plays (22nd in NHL). However, they are currently on a four game winning streak, having scored three or more goals in each game, and are 6-3-1 in their last 1o games. They are coming off a 3-2 overtime victory of the Minnesota Wild where they got goals from Micheal Ferland, Sean Monahan and Dougie Hamilton. The Flames are led by winger Johnny Gaudreau with 13 goals and a team-high 36 assists to combine for a team-leading 49 points. Defensively, the Flames are a bit better, but still have inconsistencies as they allow 2.81 goals per game (15th in NHL), 31.5 shots on goal (10th in NHL) and kill 79.6% of opponent penalties (23rd in NHL). What is even worse about that last stat is that they have terrible discipline as they average 10.5 penalty minutes per game (28th in NHL).
Cover The Spread 365 NHL betting trends:
- 14-4 SU in their last 18 games
- 2-4 ATS in their last 6 home games
- The total has gone OVER in 7 of their last 9 home games
- 4-1 SU in their last 5 games
- 5-0 ATS in their last 5 road games
- The total has gone UNDER in 6 of their last 8 games
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Both these teams have been on a good as of late. While it is still up in the air if the Flames can continue this high level of play, the Lightning have been doing it all season and have two superstars capable of taking over any game. Tampa Bay will take care of things at home.