National Hockey League: Eastern Conference Finals PIT vs. TB
Game 6- TB Leads 3-2 Pittsburgh Penguins (48-26-8) at Tampa Bay Lightning (46-31-5)
May 24, 2016- 8:00 PM ET (TV NBCSN) Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL
After a huge win on the road, the Tampa Bay Lightning return home on the cusp of advancing to the Stanley Cup Final as they get ready to face off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 6 of the East finals on Tuesday night at the Amalie Arena with the current betting lines as follow;
Best Penguins Lines: BetOnline ML (-136) Spread -1.5
Best Lightning Lines: BetOnline ML (+123) Spread +1.5
Over/Under: BetPhoenix 5.5
The Lightning will be riding high heading into Game 6 after grabbing a huge 4-3 overtime road win on Sunday thanks to yet another stellar performance from 22-year old Nikita Kucherov, who has now found the back of the net in an NHL-leading 11 of the 15 games this postseason.
Game 5 saw the young star score a goal to force overtime and then add an assist in the extra period to win it and give the Bolts a 3-2 best-of-7 seven lead putting them one win away from a return trip to the Stanley Cup final.
A second appearance by the Bolts in the Stanley Cup would be the first time since the Pens in 2008 and Detroit in 2009 to make consecutive trips to the Final.
But this will be no easy feat as closing out a series is one of the most difficult things to do in sports as the opposing team will be playing with a high sense of urgency; something the already high-powered Pens will be primed and ready to do.
In what was once a 2-1 series lead for Pittsburgh has now become a deficit as they dropped consecutive games for the first time since January. And with a do-or-die staring the Pens in the face, will head coach Mike Sullivan stay with Marc-Andre Fleury in Game 6 or go back to rookie Matt Murray?
Making his first start in goal in nearly two months, Fleury was unable to protect leads of 2-0 and 3-2. Murray, who started the first four games of this series is 9-4 in this postseason with a 2.33 GAA and .923 save percentage.
Pressure on both teams in this one as the Pens will want to force a winner-take-all Game 7 back at home, while the Bolts want to end this series now. Feeling the visitors, BetOnline is favoring PIT (-136 ML) over TB with an over/under of 5.5 total game goals scored from BetPhoenix.
Playing the totals, I will favor the UNDER of 5.5 total game goals scored as my pick for Game 6.