Tampa Bay Lightning Host Chicago Blackhawks in NBCSN Season Opener

Tampa Bay Lightning Host Chicago Blackhawks in NHL Betting Season Opener

January 12th, 2021 NHL Hockey, Online Wagering

Once upon a time, the Blackhawks were the toast of NHL gambling. Their dynasty won three Stanley Cups from 2010 through 2015. Ironically that 2015 championship was against an aspiring dynasty at that time. Tampa Bay lost the Chicago in the 2015 Final. Five years later the Lightning finally hoisted the Cup. All of which makes for a most appropriate season opener with the NHL betting odds. Tampa Bay will open their title defense Wednesday against Chicago. Of course, the Lighting is a favorite to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions. The Blackhawks are continuing an awkward rebuild.

Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Betting Information

Date and Time:Wednesday, January 13, 2021, 8 p.m. ET
Location:Amalie Arena, Tampa, Florida
Blackhawks at Lightning TV Coverage:NBCSN
Blackhawks at Lightning Odds at SBG Sportsbook:
Blackhawks +1½ (-130)6½ (-105)+200
Lightning -1½ (+110)6½ (-115)-240
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Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning SBG Odds Overview

Without the preseason games, there is no current feel to either team. Thus, handicappers will rely on the recent past for assessments. Chicago was once the most expensive team on the NHL online wagering board. However, these days the Blackhawks are opposed more than favored. The aura of their dynasty has ended. Counter to that is a Lightning team that has a high popularity. Casual gamblers will flock to the Stanley Cup champions. Home ice and a rebuilding opponent feed into that. Price remains the overriding concern of sharps. Instead, wise guys may work around that with the puck line.

Chicago Blackhawks Team Overview

First, it’s important to note that captain Jonathan Toews remains out until February 2. And longtime Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford has retired. Both were integral parts of the Chicago dynasty. Still in his prime is the familiar name of Patrick Kane. And Kane is expected to play in this opener. Overall Kane is coming off six consecutive All-Star seasons. At 389 career goals, he should surpass 400 this year.

Of major concern is goaltending. First on the depth chart is Malcolm Subban. In 2019-20 Subban posted an alarming .890 save percentage. Subban was seen as damaged goods when he arrived from Vegas at the 2020 trade deadline.

Tampa Bay Lightning Team Overview

Also with a key injury are the Lightning. Leading scorer Nikita Kucherov will miss the entire regular season. Following hip surgery, Kucherov will strive to get back for the playoffs.

Long time team captain Steven Stamkos will be in the lineup. As a consequence of an injury, Stamkos missed the 2019 Stanley Cup playoff run.

Still, the Lightning possesses dominant talent such as defensemen Victor Hedman, Luke Schenn, and Ryan McDonagh. Center Brayden Point and left-wing Ondrej Palat are dangerous scorers. Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy is one of the most consistently reliable in the NHL.

Blackhawks at Lightning Head-to-Head vs. Spread

Tampa Bay has won eight of their last nine against the Blackhawks. While one of the last four meetings between these two teams stayed under the total.

Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning SBG Free Picks

In this situation, the Blackhawks are outclassed with the NHL betting odds. Tampa Bay owns a significant advantage in goal. More emphatically the Lightning has a vast advantage in scoring depth. Fashion that Tampa Bay should be even better than last year’s Cup team.

Blackhawks at Lightning SBG Best Bet: Tampa Bay Lightning.

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