Game three of the 2021 Stanley Cup is almost upon us, as Tampa Bay Lightning head across the border to the Bell Center to play the Montreal Canadiens. Our hockey experts will be bringing you our very best NHL betting tips for this game.
Unlike last year, there is no Stanley Cup bubble, meaning both sides have to now make the long cross border trip from Florida state up to Quebec province for Game 3. Can the Canadiens turn it around in their home arena? Let’s find out...
Tampa Bay Lightning have lived up to their billing as Stanley Cup final favorites in the first two games, easily dispatching the immovable Canadiens in their first two games. Their third line of Yanni Gourde, Barclay Goodrow and Blake Coleman was perhaps the best in the regular season. Meanwhile, their three forwards, Nikita Kucherov, Brayden Point and Steven Stamkos, would probably walk into most other teams in the league.
The Montreal Canadiens qualified for the NHL postseason as the team with the worst regular season points average. Despite being rank outsiders against the Maple Leafs, they came from 1-3 down to progress in their first round series. Against the Las Vegas Knights, they were once again written-off by the bookies, with the Knights tipped at -500 to win the second round series. Added to that, they also have a goals per game average of less than 2.5. Somehow, someway though - the Canadiens are still here in the final - albeit with a mountain to climb.
The Blots are 2-0 after the first two games of the series and have won both games relatively comfortably. Lightning blew the Canadiens away in the opening game with a 1-5, holding a slender lead for most of the evening, before scoring three in the third period. Game 2 was a slightly tighter 1-3, though Lightning never really looked losing at any point. For Game 3, Lightening do have to make the long trip up north, but that shouldn't phase this team too much.
Below you can check out the results from the first two games of the Stanley Cup Final series, alongside some statistical highlights. We’ve taken these stats into account in creating our tip for Game 3.
Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Montreal Canadiens
Canadiens: 1 - Lightning: 5 | Amalie Arena
Canadiens: 1 - Lightning: 3 | Amalie Arena
Canadiens qualified with the worst regular season points average
Canadiens have a playoff scoring average below 2.5 per game
Lightning have won the first two games of the series
Having analyzed the above information, we’re predicting the Blots to make it 3-0 on Friday night.
Lightening have never really looked at any point like surrendering a lead to the Canadiens so far in the series, and we don’t see that changing. The Canadiens having home advantage for this game might see them have a bit more resolve. However, with a goal to game average of less than 2.5, there’s very little chance of them overcoming Lightening, at least at this stage in the series.
We’re therefore backing Lightning -1.5 at odds of +205 with William Hill.