It is the pivotal Game 5 on Monday when the New York Islanders take on the Tampa Bay Lightning. New York evened the series with a 3-2 victory in Game 4.
Here you can find the best picks, news, and stats for NHL playoff semifinal battle at Amalie Arena. Tampa Bay is the favorite at -185. This according to PointsBet Sportsbook, which puts New York at +165 as the underdog.
The Islanders will be without Johnny Boychuck and Anders Lee. Anders Nilsson and Marian Gaborik are still out for Tampa Bay.
Islanders Hang On to Down Lightning
New York jumped out to a 3-0 lead, then withstood a late surge by the Lightning to hold on for a 3-2 victory. Josh Bailey, Matthew Barzal, and Matt Martin each scored goals in the second period to stake the Islanders to the lead. Cal Clutterback and Adam Pelech had two assists each for the Islanders. Semyon Varlamov stopped 28 of 30 shots.
New York is averaging 3.19 goals per game and is connecting on 10.8% of their shots, both second during the playoffs. The power-play has been outstanding at 23.3%. Josh Bailey is tied for the team lead in points with Jean-Gabriel Pageau. Both have 13 points. Brock Nelson leads the team with seven goals.
The Islanders are allowing 2.63 goals per game and on the penalty-killing units have been terrible at 65.7%. Varlamov is 6-5 with a 2.53 GAA and a .923 save percentage.
Lightning Comeback Falls Short
Tampa Bay put up a valiant effort in the loss, as third-period goals by Brayden Point and Tyler Johnson pulled the Lightning within one, but they could get no closer. Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 27 of 30 shots.
Tampa Bay is averaging 3.13 goals per game and is connecting on 10.7% of their shot attempts, both third during the postseason. The power-play is second overall impact 37.8%. Nikita Kucherov leads all players during the postseason with 19 assists in 24 points. Point is the league leader in goals with 12 and has 16 points overall.
The Lightning are allowing 2.27 goals per game and have been exceptional at penalty killing at 80.9%. Vasilevskiy is 10-5 with a 2.19 GAA and a .933 save percentage
- 7-3 in their last 10 games.
- 46-19 in their last 65 games at home.
New York Islanders vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Pick:
This has been a great series up to this point, and New York has to feel very good about their chances. They not only battled back to tie the series but have proven they can win in Tampa Bay. So, there is no fear in winning here. However, the Islanders are 4-9 in the last 13 meetings in Tampa Bay and are 8-18 in the last 26 meetings between these teams. It will be a close affair, but Tampa Bay will take the series lead.
Free NHL Picks: Take Tampa Bay at -185.
New York Islanders vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Total Pick:
This is going to be a very tense hockey game. Neither team can afford a mistake here, as they likely understand that losing this contest means they will likely lose the series. So, expect a very tight-checking affair where the number of odd-man rushes are limited. That helps to keep the scoring down.
Pick: Go under 5.0 at +110