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Two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference face off tonight when the Tampa Bay Lightning visit the Carolina Hurricanes.

Tampa Bay Lightning vs Carolina Hurricanes Prediction: Expect a Tight Contest in Raleigh

The Carolina Hurricanes host the defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning tonight in a pivotal matchup with major playoff implications. Both teams are looking to win their divisions, the Lightning are 6 points behind the Panthers for the Atlantic Division lead, and the Hurricanes are 3 points up on the Rangers in the Metropolitan.

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Tampa Bay Lightning vs Carolina Hurricanes Prediction

This is the second meeting of the season as the Canes took a 2-1 road decision, in overtime, on November 9th. These teams are also coming off a 5 game playoff series last June, which Tampa Bay took on their way to back-to-back Stanley Cup wins. When these teams get together a very tight, defensive game usually is what we see. Over the last 10 regular-season meetings, the under 6 is 8-1-1, not including the playoff series, which saw 4 of the 5 games stay under 6. The Carolina Hurricanes are having trouble scoring goals right now. Over their last 10 games, they are averaging 2.10 goals per game, which is off from their 3.26 season goal per game average. At home this season, where unders of 6 are 18-10-3, the Canes are allowing a league-least 2.06 goals per game on a 2nd best penalty kill at 91.5%. The Canes are also very stingy in 5 on 5 situations where they have allowed the 5th least home goals. Carolina's goaltender Freddy Andersen, who is the projected starter tonight, is having a fine season. Andersen sports a home goals-against average of 1.93 and a save percentage of .932.

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The Tampa Bay Lightning are also in somewhat of a scoring slump themselves. Over the last 10 games, Tampa is averaging 2.8 goals per game, which is off from their 3.33 season average. On the road this season, where unders of 6 are 12-16-4, the Bolts are averaging 3.13 goals against per game. Their Penalty kill is 77% on the road, which is the 11th worst. Five on Five, however, the Bolts allow the 11 least goals on the road. Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, who is the projected starter tonight, has a 2.73 goals-against average on the road with a .911 save percentage.  Given recent trends and these teams' tendencies when playing each other, I am backing the under in this contest. Both of these teams want to get ready for playoff hockey so we should see a tight and cautious defensive battle tonight.

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Tampa Bay Lightning vs Carolina Hurricanes Pick

Pick: Tampa Bay Lightning vs Carolina Hurricanes Under 6 (-120) (Bet $120 to Win $100)

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Article Author


Born and raised in Philadelphia, Tone has been handicapping the four major sports for over twenty years. An NHL enthusiast, Tone’s expertise lies on the ice. He’s excelled and profited finding the right angles on NHL games, particularly with player props, game props, and game totals. A contributor to several gaming sites, you can follow him on Twitter @TonesTakes.


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