- The Tampa Bay Lightning host the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday, December 28th
- The Bolts will be without Andrei Vasilevskiy, Mikhail Sergachev and coach Jon Cooper
- Read below for Canadiens vs Lightning odds, predictions and best NHL pick
The 2021-22 NHL season resumes on Tuesday, December 28th with a matchup between the Tampa Bay Lightning (20-6-4) and Montreal Canadiens (7-21-3). Puck drop is 7pm ET at Amalie Arena.
The Lightning are listed as heavy homes favorites despite the fact they’ll be missing several important players. Tampa Bay has taken 10 of the past 11 meetings with Montreal.
Let’s take a look at the Canadiens vs Lightning odds and offer you our NHL best pick prediction.
Canadiens vs Lightning Odds
|Game Time||Team||Puck Line||Total||Moneyline|
|7pm ET||Montreal Canadiens||+1.5 (-121)||O 6 (-113)||+205|
|December 28th, 2021||Tampa Bay Lightning||-1.5 (+100)||U 6 (-108)||-250|
Odds as of December 27th at Barstool Sportsbook
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Bolts Betting Value Impacted by COVID
Tampa Bay will be without several players when they resume NHL action on Tuesday against Montreal. Forward Anthony Cirelli, blueliner Mikhail Sergachev and goalies Andrei Vasilevskiy and Brian Elliott are all in the NHL COVID-19 protocol. Coach Jon Cooper is also in the protocol.
So #tblightning players/staff currently in COVID protocol: Mikhail Sergachev, Andrei Vasilevskiy, Brian Elliott, Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Anthony Cirelli, Andrej Sustr, Jon Cooper, Rob Zettler
— Joe Smith (@JoeSmithTB) December 27, 2021
Tampa Bay is already without Nikita Kucherov and defenseman Erik Cernak due to injury, so this is looking like a very depleted roster for Tuesday. The good news is that Brayden Point (upper body) is skating at practice and could return to game action against Montreal.
It speaks to Tampa Bay’s depth that they are still heavy favorites in the NHL odds despite these absences. The Bolts are 11-2-1 in their past 14 games and sit atop the Atlantic Division with 44 points. Jon Cooper’s squad beat Montreal by a 3-2 score on Dec. 7.
Habs Slumping in NHL Odds
Montreal is on pace for its worst season in team history heading into Tuesday’s matchup with Tampa Bay. The Habs have managed just one victory in their past eight games and own a miserable 2-11-2 record away from Bell Centre. Montreal beat Philadelphia 3-2 in their last game on Dec. 16.
Grosse soirée au bureau pour Cayden hier soir. 💪
— Canadiens Montréal (@CanadiensMTL) December 17, 2021
Much like Tampa Bay, the Habs have been greatly impacted by COVID. Montreal placed Artturi Lehkonen, Mike Hoffman and Tyler Toffoli into COVID-19 protocol before the holiday break. They updated the virus list Monday, adding Jake Allen Ben Chiarot, Jeff Petry, Joel Edmundson and Chris Wideman.
Even if the Habs get some of these players back for Tuesday’s game, they’re still in trouble against a top NHL team. Montreal is averaging just 2.13 goals per game, which is second-worst in the NHL. The Habs power play is operating at just 12.5% and is a big reason Montreal has scored only 12 goals over their last eight contests.
Canadiens vs Lightning Pick
The Tuesday NHL odds highlight a matchup between two teams going in opposite directions. Even with these COVID-19 complications, oddsmakers know one team is clearly superior to the other. You also can’t ignore Tampa Bay has taken 10 of the previous 11 meetings with Montreal.
Canadiens vs Lightning Recent Results
|12/07/21||MON 2 – TBL 3||TBL||MON||Under|
|07/07/21||TBL 1 – MON 0||TBL||MON||Under|
|07/05/21||MON 3 – TBL 2 OT||MON||MON||Push|
|07/02/21||MON 3 – TBL 6||TBL||TBL||Over|
|06/30/21||TBL 3 – MON 1||TBL||TBL||Under|
The Tampa Bay goalie situation is interesting, as they’re yet to call-up a goalie for Tuesday’s game. This would suggest perhaps they expect one of Vasilevskiy or Elliott to come off the COVID list before puck drop. The Habs will be starting Cayden Primeau, who is coming off a 37-save win.
The Tampa Bay Lightning three-way regulation line (-155) is the best way to bet the Canadiens vs Lightning odds. Montreal simply holds no underdog value until they get healthier, while the Bolts are surging and haven’t required extra time to beat the Habs since 2018.
With some uncertainty at the goaltending position for Tampa Bay, reduce the heavy juice by betting Tampa Bay to win in regulation in the Tuesday NHL odds at Barstool Sportsbook.
Pick: Tampa Bay Three-Way Line (-155)