The NHL First Round Playoffs continue tonight when the Detroit Red Wings take on the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first game of their opening-round matchup. The game is scheduled for a 7:30 p.m. start time and it will be televised live on CNBC. Currently the betting odds for the game have the Lightning favored by a comfortable margin.
Tampa Bay finished the regular season with 50 wins, which gave them the third overall spot in the Eastern Conference this season. Detroit finished the regular season by winning 43 games, clinching their 24th straight spot in the post season, the longest run in professional sports currently.
This will be one of those first round matchups that could go either way. The Red Wings are a very talented team and have plenty of veterans on the squad that can help guide them to the second round. Yet, despite all the success Detroit has had over the years the team hasn't won a Stanley Cup since the 2008 season. In fact, they haven't gotten to the conference finals since the 2009 season, a certain long time for the Red Wings and their fans.
Playing the Tampa Bay Lightning in the opening round of this playoffs could continue the conference finals draught. Tampa Bay has one of the best players in the league in Steven Stamkos, who scored 43 goals on the season. Both he and Tyler Johnson finished with 72 points to lead the Lightning, who finished with the most wins and points in franchise history.
This game opens in Tampa Bay, where the Lighting went crazy this season, posting a record of 32-8-1. They were not a good road team, winners of just 18 of their 41 games. Detroit was not bad on the road, going 21-15-5, but it won't be easy winning tonight in Tampa Bay.
The Lightning get it done in their first game at home.
Free Pick: Tampa Bay
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