The New York Islanders won Game 3 of the Eastern Conference final. Photo from @Islanders_fanly (Twitter).
- The Tampa Bay Lightning lead the New York Islanders 2-1 in the Eastern Conference final
- Brock Nelson scored the game-winning goal in Game 2 with only 3:25 remaining in the third period
- The Lightning lineup card will provide a roadmap to the likely result of Game 4
With a 5-3 victory on Friday night, the New York Islanders have life, now trailing the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1 in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference final. Game 4 is slated for Sunday, Sep. 13th, at 8:00 pm ET
How did the Islanders claw their way back into the series, and what does it mean going forward? Those are very important questions to consider when examining the Lightning vs Islanders odds.
Lightning vs Islanders Game 4 Odds
|Team||Puck Line||Over/Under||Moneyline at DraftKings|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||-1.5 (+200)||O 5.5 (+114)||-127|
|New York Islanders||+1.5 (-245)||U 5.5 (-139)||+100|
Odds taken Sep. 11th
Brock Nelson scored a late goal for the Islanders helping them to the victory. That said, it wasn’t the main reason his team got the win. Tampa Bay was incredibly short handed missing three of their top offensive weapons – Steven Stamkos, Brayden Point, and Alex Killorn – the first two due to injury and Killorn due to suspension. What does it mean going forward? Tonight’s result isn’t likely to happen twice in a row.
🔥 GWG CELLY 🔥 pic.twitter.com/dKSNC9Ipf8
— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) September 12, 2020
Lightning Unable to Overcome Missing Players
Stamkos remains sidelined and unlikely to return in the Eastern Conference final. Point was a surprise absence and there has not been an update on the ailment that kept him from the lineup. Killorn was suspended for one game and will return in Game 4. Getting Killorn and, possibly, Point back in Game 4 is good news for Tampa Bay.
Given that we’re all going to tune in to tonight’s game, I asked Jon Cooper if he can say if he’s encouraged it may be a short-term injury for Brayden Point. He smiled and called it a “trap question.” #tblightning
— Joe Smith (@JoeSmithTB) September 11, 2020
The trio were were all among Tampa’s top-five scorers in the regular season. They combined for 179 points in 191 games. The Lightning have been the better team all series and, with Killorn back and Point potentially joining him, the balance of power shifts for Game 4.
Pageau Wins Battle With Kucherov
Jean-Gabriel Pageau has been given the unenviable task of shadowing Nikita Kucherov in this series. For one night, he won the battle convincingly. Kucherov was held to only one assist while Pageau had one assist and the empty-net goal that sealed the victory for the Islanders.
J.G. Pageau on Nikita Kucherov slashing him after his empty-net goal:
“He was trying to get a stick on puck and he got the back of my leg, so it wasn’t too close. We’re gonna battle with everyone” pic.twitter.com/RYDV3EIAex
— SNY (@SNYtv) September 12, 2020
Kucherov hunted down Pageau on that empty-netter and you could tell from the series of hacks and slashes that he was frustrated. He knew as well as anyone else that he lost a key battle his team needed him to win. Looking forward in the series and at the next game specifically, it’s unlikely to happen again. Kucherov has 17 points in his last nine games. He’s recorded more than one point in four of those nine games. Pageau should have his hands full in Game 4, specifically in the defensive end where he’ll likely spend much of the game.
Lightning Offer Value at -127
Tampa Bay easily could have won this game and notched a seventh straight win in the playoffs. The -127 price tag for Game 4 seems like an aggressive over-correction by oddsmakers. Despite a depleted lineup, Tampa had a great chance to win this game. Expect a more well-rounded roster to get a better result, especially if goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy plays up to his capability.
Monitor the injury reports before deciding how much to wager but, even if it’s only Killorn returning to the lineup, it should be enough to regain control of the series.
The Pick: Tampa Bay Lightning moneyline (-127)
Ryan has been working at TSN for over eleven years, and is now a lead writer and content producer at That’s Hockey. Over the years, he’s launched and hosted TSN’s first NCAAF podcast, The College Football Show, and been featured on the likes of TSN 1050, Sportscentre, and That’s Hockey 2Nite.