Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning NHL Odds

Chicago vs. Tampa Bay NHL Betting

Wednesday night brings the start of a new National Hockey League season with an NBCSN Tripleheader. The middle matchup of the three games could prove to be the most interesting of all. The Tampa Bay Lightning will begin the defense of their Stanley Cup championship. Tampa Bay is a preseason co-favorite with the Colorado Avalanche to win the 2021 Stanley Cup. The Lightning will host a Chicago Blackhawks team that hasn’t finished in the top eight of the Western Conference for the past three seasons. Once mighty Chicago remains a team in transition.

Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

Date and Time: Wednesday, January 13, 2021, 8 p.m. ET

Location: Amalie Arena, Tampa, Florida

NHL Betting Odds at

Chicago Blackhawks +216

Tampa Bay Lightning -251

Total: 6.5

Blackhawks at Lightning TV Coverage: NBCSN

Blackhawks vs. Lightning Bookmaker Odds Analysis

Tampa Bay will draw overwhelming support from the betting public. Casual fans will be drawn to the obvious home favorite and Stanley Cup champion. Many sharps may be tempted by the big price that the Blackhawks will get as the rebuilding road dog. But that is tempered by the understandable fear of stepping into the Lightning. Other sharps may venture into a puck line play with Tampa Bay to avoid the expensive Moneyline overlay.

Chicago Blackhawks Overview

The Blackhawks are in a difficult transition. Their best players are still from the core group that won three Stanley Cup championships. But except for right wing Patrick Kane, those old champions are past their prime. And as the roster evolves the newer replacements haven’t proven to be as talented as the older players that they replaced.

A couple of familiar names will be out missing in action for this game. Goaltender Corey Crawford has retired. While center and team captain Jonathan Toews is out until at least February 2.

Former Vegas Golden Knights backup Malcolm Subban is expected to be Chicago’s number one goalie. His save percentage last year was a lackluster .890.

Last year the Blackhawks were the 12th and last seed at the Edmonton Bubble. Chicago stunned the Edmonton Oilers 3-1 in the qualifying round before getting sent home by the Vegas Golden Knights 4-1 in the first playoff round.

Tampa Bay Lightning Overview

The Tampa Bay Lightning have been in the elite class of NHL teams since making the 2015 Stanley Cup Final where they lost to, ironically enough, the Chicago Blackhawks. Since then, the Lighting has been a perennial Stanley Cup favorite. They finally hoisted hockey’s Holy Grail after a 4-2 series win over the Dallas Stars last fall.

Tampa Bay returns a talented core led by longtime mainstay and captain Steven Stamkos, who ironically enough missed the playoff run of 2020 due to an abdomen issue. Stamkos is looking healthy and the Lightning expects him to be at 100%.

Of great concern is that leading scorer, right wing Nikita Kucherov, is out for the entire regular season due to hip surgery.

Tampa Bay still boasts dominant talent such as defensemen Victor Hedman, Luke Schenn, and Ryan McDonagh. Center Brayden Point and left wing Ondrej Palat are dangerous offensive threats. While goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy is one of the most consistently reliable at that position in the NHL.

Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Head-to-Head

In this head-to-head series, the Lightning has won eight of their last nine against the Blackhawks. Just one of the last four meetings between these two teams stayed under the total.

Chicago Blackhawks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Bookmaker Free Picks

The Blackhawks will have the advantage of this being the first game for both teams. Tampa Bay will feel the loss of Kucherov. Chicago is worth an opening night shot as the pricey dog. Tampa Bay will be priced far too high.

Blackhawks vs. Lightning NHL Odds Best Bet: Chicago Blackhawks

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