Tampa Bay Lightning (45-19-5) vs. New York Islanders (41-21-8)
June 17, 2021 8:00 pm EDT
The Line: New York Islanders +120 / Tampa Bay Lightning -141; Over/Under: 5
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The Tampa Bay Lightning and the New York Islanders meet in game three of their best-of-seven Stanley Cup semi-final matchup in NHL action from Nassau Coliseum on Thursday night.
The Tampa Bay Lightning will look to take a 2-1 series lead on the road here after evening the set up at one win apiece following their 4-2 win over the Isles in game two last time out.
Brayden Point opened the scoring for the Lightning just under nine minutes into the game but Brock Nelson would score an unassisted power play goal just four and a half minutes later to tie the game at one heading into the second period. Ondrej Palat would make it a 2-1 game with the lone goal of the second period before Jan Rutta pushed the lead to 3-1 just over two minutes into the third frame. Victor Hedman added a power play tally of his own to stretch Tampa’s lead to 4-1 but Mathew Barzal would cut into the deficit with just over three minutes to go in the game. Unfortunately, that was as close as the Islanders would get as Tampa Bay held on for the win.
Andrei Vasilevskiy got the win in goal for Tampa Bay after stopping 24 of 26 sshots faced in the winning effort while Semyon Varlamov took the loss in goal for the Islanders after allowing all 4 goals on 27 shots before being pulled in the 3rd period, leaving Ilya Sorokin to stop all six shots he faced in relief.
Tampa Bay is 5-1 in their last 6 road games and 6-2 in their last 8 games against a team with a winning record while the under is 6-0 in their last 6 games following a win. New York is 4-1 in their last 5 games overall and 6-2 in their last 8 games as a home underdog while the over is 6-2-1 in their last 9 games overall. The under is 3-1-1 in the last 5 meetings between these two teams.
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I think the over was lucky go come through in game two, as Barzal’s goal pushed under bettors over the edge but I think we get back to basics in game three. These are two of the better defensive clubs left in the playoff field and two of the better defensive teams in the east and I see a result similar to game one where a 2-1 or 3-1 result could be on the cards whichever way you slice it. Give me the under in a defensive war here.