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Lightning Trying to Tie Up Stanley Cup Final Following Game 1 Loss

Dallas Stars vs Tampa Bay Lightning Preview

The Tampa Bay Lightning will be looking to bounce back from a 4-1 loss to the Dallas Stars in Game 1 of the 2020 Stanley Cup Final, and they are listed as comparable betting favorites as they try to tie up the best-of-seven series at 1-1 on Monday night.

Dallas Stars vs Tampa bay Lightning
  • Date/Time: September 21, 8 p.m. ET
  • Arena: Rogers Place   
  • TV Coverage: NBCSN
  • Opening Odds: Lightning -162 | O/U 5 (Line History)
  • Stars vs Lightning Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

After watching Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final and following Dallas throughout this postseason, the betting public is finally giving some love to the Western Conference champions. The Stars picked up where they left off against the Vegas Golden Knights in the conference final, shutting down the Lightning with goaltender Anton Khudobin continuing his campaign for the Conn Smythe Trophy. The Stars’ odds have moved slightly to +130 from the opener of +135 and may dip even lower prior to puck drop for Game 2.

Dallas News & Notes

Khudobin has been brilliant for Dallas and will almost definitely win the Conn Smythe if his team hoists the Cup. He has surrendered no more than two goals in five of the last six games for the Stars, who have relied heavily on his play along with strong team defense to pull within three wins of taking the Cup back to Texas for the first time since 1999.

Dallas has also gotten surprising scoring from players who had not contributed much prior to the playoffs, as Joel Hanley and Jason Dickinson tallied their first goals of the postseason in Game 1 on Saturday.

The Stars do not seem to mind the doubters and have embraced the role of underdogs, using their physical brand of hockey to get into the heads of their opponents and wear them down, similar to the St. Louis Blues last year.

Tampa Bay News & Notes

Few would argue Tampa Bay is not the most talented team in the league, but the most talented team does not always win the Cup. Just ask last year’s Lightning squad that earned the Presidents’ Trophy before getting swept in the first round of the playoffs by the Columbus Blue Jackets. Five years ago, many of the players on this team lost Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final 2-1 to the Chicago Blackhawks before winning the next two.

While Tampa Bay eventually lost that series in six games, that experience should teach them to never count themselves out. The Lightning may just need a little boost to get them back on track, and that could come in the form of the return of captain Steven Stamkos, who is reportedly close to coming back to the ice for the first time since late February.

Betting Pick: Lightning -145

This is a fade the public play, and with good reason. Tampa Bay is a great hockey team and will not lose consecutive games in this spot. The Lightning know what is on the line here with no home-ice advantage, as going down two games would be disastrous. They will play with a sense of urgency and make Khudobin look human in a Game 2 victory.

Shark Bites
  • The Stars are 6-1 SU in their last 7 games.
  • The Lightning have not lost 2 straight games this postseason.
  • The UNDER is 4-0-2 in the last 6 games for Dallas.