Tampa Bay Lightning (26-11-2) at Columbus Blue Jackets (15-18-8)
NHL Hockey: Thursday, April 8, 2021 at 7:00 pm (Nationwide Arena)
The Line: Columbus Blue Jackets +155 / Tampa Bay Lightning -188 --- Over/Under: 5.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The Tampa Bay Lightning and the Columbus Blue Jackets meet in NHL action from the Nationwide Arena on Thursday night.
The Tampa Bay Lightning will look to rebound from a 4-2 loss to the Blue Jackets in their last matchup. Victor Hedman leads the Lightning in scoring with 36 points including a team-high 29 assists while Steven Stamkos and Brayden Point each have 33 points with a team-high 16 goals and 17 assists apiece. Ondrej Palat also has 21 assists as well this season. As a team, Tampa Bay is averaging 3.4 goals on 30.5 shots with a 26.2% success rate on the power play while allowing 2.5 goals on 28 shots per game with an 81% success rate killing off penalties this season.
The Columbus Blue Jackets will look to build on their win over Tampa bay last time out. Oliver Bjorkstrand leads Columbus in scoring with 31 points including team-highs of 14 goals and 17 assists while Cam Atkinson has 26 points with 13 goals and 13 assists. Jack Roslovic and Seth Jones each have 17 assists as well this season. As a team, Columbus is averaging 2.4 goals on 29 shots with a 14.4% success rate on the power play while allowing 3.1 goals on 31.9 shots with a 78.1% success rate on the PK this season.
Tampa Bay is 70-30 in their last 100 games overall and 64-29 in their last 93 games as a favorite while the over is 8-1 in their last 9 road games. Columbus is 2-5 in their last 7 games as an underdog and 3-8 in their last 11 home games while the under is 9-3 in their last 12 games overall. The under is 30-13-3 in the last 46 meetings between these two teams.
I get why Tampa Bay is going to be favored every time they take the ice against the Blue Jackets, but the Blue Jackets battle Tampa Bay tough every time they face off. On the other hand, I don’t know if Columbus wins back-to-back games against Tampa Bay, but I do think we see the defense ratcheted up on both sides here. I think that Columbus gives Tampa Bay all they can handle once again, so I’ll back the under in this spot.