Tampa Bay Lightning (25-13-4) at Winnipeg Jets (19-21-5)
|Date & Time||Tuesday January 7, 2014, 8:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Winnipeg Jets -105 / Tampa Bay Lightning -105 --- Over/Under: 5.5
|TV Channel||Stream NHL games all season on ESPN+ for only $4.99 a month. Sign up now!|
The Bolts head into Winnipeg looking to chase down the Atlantic division lead while the Jets look for any spark to get them back in the playoff picture.
The Lightning continue their quest at winning the Atlantic division crown on Tuesday as they head into Winnipeg to take on an underachieving Jets team. If there is any team in the league that has been a surprise for better or for worse it has to be the Tampa Bay Lightning as they stormed out of the gates as one of the best teams in the league and have sustained that reputation despite losing their bets player to a tibia fracture. The loss of Stamkos was predicted to be the demise of Tampa Bay’s season but they have persevered and have received some special efforts this season namely from goaltender Ben Bishop. That being said the Bolts could be without the Vezina favourite for a few games as he battles injury and Anders Lindback will assume the starter’s role in the meantime. He is likely to get the call for the Lightning on the road here against the Jets who will counter with Ondrej Pavelec who was recently named to the Czech Olympic roster.
The Jets continue to be one of the most frustrating teams to watch and handicap in the NHL as they have the talent to not only make the playoffs but pull off a couple victories in the process yet they are a .500 team that sits near the bottom of their division. Winnipeg has a nice balance offensively and a blue line that can compete at both ends of the rink but goaltending continues to be a soft spot as neither Pavelec nor Al Montoya seems to want to get a grasp on the starter’s role. The Jets have lost three straight games heading into tonight’s contests yet somehow they are even money against one of the Eastern Conference’s best teams who holds an 11 point edge over them in the standings. I am not a huge fan of Lindback starting for the Bolts but they haven’t been all goaltending this year and I think at least for one contest Lindback can steal the show at a great price on the better team.