Carolina Hurricanes (40-14-10) vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (42-18-4)
June 3, 2021 8:00 pm EDT
The Line: Tampa Bay Lightning -140 / Carolina Hurricanes +120; Over/Under: 5.5
(Click here for latest betting odds)
The Carolina Hurricanes and the Tampa Bay Lightning meet in game three of their best of seven NHL Second Round playoff series on Thursday. The Hurricanes are trying to bounce back and get on the board in this series after dropping both of their first two games at home following a 2-1 loss to the Bolts on Tuesday.
The first period didn’t see much action, ending scoreless with a slight 8-6 edge in shots o goal for the Hurricanes. Alex Killorn broke the deadlock for the Lightning, giving Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead just over seven minutes into the second period. Killorn’s tally would hold up until Anthony Cirelli doubled the Lightning’s lead just over eight minutes into the 3rd. Carolina put the pressure on, outshooting the Lightning 24-9 over the final two periods and 32-15 in the game, finally breaking through with Andrei Svechnikov’s goal with 1:30 to play but it was too little too late as Tampa Bay held on for the win and a huge 2-0 series lead going back home.
Andrei Vasilevskiy got the win between the pipes for Tampa Bay after stopping 31 of 32 shots faced in the winning effort while Alex Nedeljkovic ended up with the loss in net for Carolina after giving up both goals on 15 shots faced in the defeat.
Carolina is 1-6 in their last 7 playoff games as an underdog and 1-4 in their last 5 road games while the under is 7-0 in their last 7 games as a road underdog. Tampa Bay is 44-17 in their last 61 home games and 86-39 in their last 125 games overall while the under is 4-1 in their last 5 games following a win. The under is 13-3-1 in the last 17 meetings between these two teams.
There’s a lot at stake for both clubs here obviously, as Carolina can ill afford to go down 3-0 on the road against the defending Stanley Cup champions, while Tampa Bay doesn’t want to give the Hurricanes any momentum and would rather close out the series sooner rather than later. Instead, I’m going to side with the under once again. Despite the talent on both teams from an offensive perspective, it’s been all about the defense and goaltending in the first two games and I don’t expect much to change in a high-stakes game three where neither side want to be the ones to make the first mistake. Give me the under.