The road trip for the Tampa Bay Lightning continues against the Edmonton Oilers

The Lightning and the Oilers will be looking at each other tonight wondering why neither are safe to make the playoffs.
Dec 9, 2023; Seattle, Washington, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Nicholas Paul (20) celebrates
Dec 9, 2023; Seattle, Washington, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Nicholas Paul (20) celebrates / Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL season is closer to the midway point than many fans want to admit, and as we have written this week the Tampa Bay Lightning are in danger of being cast aside if their play on the road doesn't improve.

Good thing misery loves company, and tonight the Bolts will take on a fellow squad that should be in a playoff spot but isn't.

Tampa Bay Lightning: Spiderman Meme

Nikita Kucherov and friends enter tonight with a record of 13-12-5 and have 31 points through 30 games. The Lightning are now 11th in the Eastern Conference and while they are tied with Washington for the final playoff spot, along with New Jersey and Carolina, the Capitals have played five fewer games than the Lightning entering tonight.

From a metrics standpoint, Tampa played better against Vancouver than a 4-1 loss would indicate. But as has been the case since his return from injury, the Lightning are not able to rely on Andrei Vasilevskiy to bail them out.

Who To Watch On Edmonton

For as disappointing as the Lightning have been, the Edmonton Oilers hold the title of the most disappointing team in the NHL to start the season.

After reaching the Western Conference Finals last season, the Oilers were one of the popular picks to win the Stanley Cup this season. Instead, they only won two of their first 12 games and head coach Jay Woodcroft was invited to leave.

Unfortunately for the Lightning, Edmonton seems to be hitting its stride. The teams last met on November 18, and the Lightning won 6-4. The Oilers lost their next two games but have been on an eight-game winning streak since then.

Connor McDavid has 38 points in 24 games and Leon Draisaitl has 33 points.

Vegas Says...

The Oilers are on an eight-game winning streak and the Lightning can't win on the road.

This makes Edmonton a -165 favorite tonight while Tampa is a +140 underdog. 84% of bets have been in favor of the Oilers.

The over/under is the standard 6.5 goals. 99% of bets have been on the over, though Tampa is just 3-7 in their last ten games at hitting the over while Edmonton is 5-4-1.