HRWager’s NHL Free Pick focuses on a Tampa team that is feeling the pressure from both the Red Wings and local media. The jumbled mess of the Atlantic sees the Lightning in the playoffs if it all started today. Detroit barely scraps in at the second wild card. Not a lot of games left to make that final push, so the papers and bloggers in Tampa are really pressing the Lightning to break an old habit. All of this will make for some hard hitting action on 3/22 in our NHL game of the Day.
NHL Free Pick : Possession
Tampa has gotten where they are at in no small part to their possession. This team controls the puck well. Does this translate into goals? According to the action hungry fans, not so much! Lamentations of too much passing that has more turnovers than shots are crying out from the sun and fun of Florida. Will this team have rabbit ears at this point of the season? They might because the Lightning are not in the greatest of form. Four game round trip that saw them go 2-2. They got in at 6AM monday and naturally took the day off. Even though they only have two wins in their last seven games, do not look for wholesale changes in this key game. Pass…pass..pass…with emphasis on retention more than shooting.
Red Wings New Coach
Detroit came down and treated first place Florida like rag dolls winning 5-3. Now with the distractions of the sun, will this team come out full force despite it being a huge game for them? Why are we worried about this? First off, Detroit has not won in Tampa since 2011. Second is that both goaltenders slated to start tonight are stellar against each other.
- Jimmy Howard (Det) 5-2-2 1.87 gaa
- Ben Bishop (TB) 8-4 1.69
So what are the lines for this one? Det is in the +140 ML range because of their past futility in Tampa plus one other point. They have a new coach after the decade of Mike Babcock’s chokehold on the franchise. Players might decide to enjoy the scenery too much under Blashill. Therefore look at the total of 5 goals in this one. Tampa controls the flow in this one so look for retention and less chances. With the goal tenders each under two goals against the other franchise, it is obvious where we should invest. Under 5 +110 is HRWagers NHL Free Pick of the Day for Detroit at Tampa on 3/22. Good fortune and we will talk to you tomorrow here at the HRW.