Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Preview
A pair of perennial NHL playoff teams will square off in Pittsburgh on Thursday night when the Penguins host the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Pittsburgh Penguins have some work to do if they are going to make a return to the playoffs this season, as they come into this game in seventh place in the Metropolitan Division. Tampa Bay has recorded 25 points already this season and sit atop the Atlantic Division. The Lightning look like a legitimate threat to win the Stanley Cup this season. There should be no shortage of goals in this game as both teams are in the top-10 in goals per game this season. This is a marquee matchup with plenty of star power on each side.
Penguins vs. Lightning Odds
The moneyline for this game is Pittsburgh Penguins -110. The over/under for total goals scored is set at six goals.
Moneyline: Penguins -110
Penguins vs. Lightning Head to Head
This is the first of three matchups between the Eastern Conference heavyweights this season. The Lightning took two of three games from the Penguins a season ago, outscoring them 14-10 in those three games.
Penguins vs. Lightning Stats
The Penguins have scored 3.31 goals per game this season, and they have a deep and talented offensive roster. Sidney Crosby and Phil Kessel have each scored eight goals to lead the team this season, and Evgeni Malkin leads the team with 14 assists and 21 points. Pittsburgh has struggled on defense, giving up 3.06 goals per game which is in the bottom third of the NHL. Goalie Matt Murray has posted a 3.87 goals against average this season.
While Pittsburgh is a solid offensive team, the Tampa Bay Lightning are the best in the NHL. The Lightning average 3.5 goals per game this season, which is the top scoring average in the league. Center Brayden Point leads the Lightning with nine goals and 19 points this season. The Lightning have given up just 2.78 goals per game this season, which is top-10 in the NHL.
Penguins vs. Lightning News
The Penguins are hoping that center Derick Brassard can return for this matchup with the Washington Capitals. Brassard has not played since suffering a lower-body injury in a game on October 25. Defenseman Jamie Oleksiak returned to the lineup against the New Jersey Devils after being a healthy scratch last week.
21-year-old defenseman Erik Cernak made his NHL debut against the Buffalo Sabres on Monday Tuesday night. He is expected to remain in the lineup for this game. Anton Stralman continues to be listed as day-to-day with an upper-body injury.
Penguins vs. Lightning Predictions
The Penguins and Lightning have played in several big games in recent years, and this should be a terrific matchup. Both teams will take chances on offense, and the offensive passing and pace of play should be crisp. Look for this to be a one-goal game, but the Penguins will pick up a much-needed victory at home. Bet the Pittsburgh Penguins -110 over the Tampa Bay Lightning.