The Minnesota Wild and the Tampa Bay Lightning are both looking to get back in the win column after consecutive losses. Both are also currently third in their respective divisions, so a win this Tuesday will help them stave off those looking to supplant them out of the playoff picture. With all that being said, let’s now take a look at our NHL odds series plus our Wild-Lightning prediction for this showdown scheduled at 7:00 PM ET.

Here are the Wild-Lightning NHL odds, courtesy of FanDuel

NHL Odds: Wild -Lightning Odds

Minnesota Wild: +1.5 (-178)

Tampa Bay Lightning: -1.5 (+144)

Over: 6.0 (-122)

Under: 6.0 (+100)

How To Watch Wild -Lightning

TV: ESPN+

Stream: ESPN+

Time: 7:00 ET/4:00 PT

*Watch NHL games LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*

Why The Wild Could Cover The Spread

After stitching together three wins in a row earlier this month by beating the New York Islanders, Arizona Coyotes, and Washington Capitals, Minnesota has seemingly gone cold. The Wild followed up that hot stretch with back-to-back losses to the Carolina Hurricanes and to the Florida Panthers – both on the road – via a combined score of 10-5.

Minnesota’s pair of losses to the Canes and to the Panthers get particularly more frustrating in hindsight when considering the fact that the Wild did a good job of controlling the puck in those contests. Their shots just did not find the back of the net enough. In their 5-3 loss to the Panthers last Saturday, the Wild outshot Florida, 32-27, and posted a 53.0 CF%. They outshot the Hurricanes – one of the best teams in the entire league in possession metrics – with 31 shots on goal to just 29 allowed while posting a 51.0 CF%.

The momentum is there for Minnesota if you look just deep enough despite the losses the team has suffered of late, and the underlying stats point to a much better scoring production sooner than later. With Tampa Bay’s defense looking like a mess of late, the Wild might be catching the Lightning at just the right time. Tampa Bay has allowed 11 goals in its last two games and has also surrendered four power-play goals on 16 chances on the mad advantage by its last three opponents.

There’s also the matter of Minnesota’s opponents having a penchant for drawing penalty minutes. In fact, Wild opponents have the highest penalty minutes per game (12.3). The Lighting are already a top-six team in terms of penalty minutes, so it can be fair for Minnesota to expect more power-play chances than usual later tonight against Tampa Bay. You don’t have to look that far to see evidence of the Wild’s special teams having success on the attack versus the Lightning. Minnesota beat the Lightning at home earlier this month to the tune of a 5-1 score, with their special team netting a PP goal out of three chances.

The Wild have won 15 of their last 22 games after taking two full days of rest.

Why The Lightning Could Cover The Spread

Like the Wild, Tampa Bay will enter Tuesday night’s game looking to prevent a three-game losing skid. As mentioned earlier, the Lightning’s defense has been atrocious of late. After losing to the Edmonton Oilers last Thursday, 5-3, the Bolts punctuated their five-game road trip with a 6-3 defeat at the hands of the Calgary Flames Saturday. A change of scenery and a return to a friendlier atmosphere this Tuesday night could just be the cure to Tampa Bay’s malaise. The Lightning are 17-4-1 straight up this season in games at home and 12-0 against the puck line so far this season in contests played at Amalie Arena.

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The last time they hit the ice at home, the Lightning torched the Vancouver Canucks on Jan. 12 in a 5-4 victory. Andrei Vasilevskiy is still regarded as one of the best netminders in the entire NHL today, but the Lighting might opt to rest him in favor of Brian Elliott. It’s still likely that Vasilevskiy will get the call to patrol the crease tonight for the Lightning even though he’s allowed four goals in each of his last two starts and in three of his last five, as he remains their best option between the pipes. In any case, Tampa Bay’s goalies will enter tonight’s game with fresh legs after two days of rest.

Despite a brutal January, Vasilevskiy is still fifth overall in the NHL with a 20-12-1 record and 11th with a 2.55 GA/G. Elliott was the one in front of the net when the Lightning lost earlier to Minnesota, so playing Vasilevskiy against the Wild’s middling offense just seems to be the right call to make for head coach Jon Cooper. The Wild are just 17th in the NHL with 3.11 goals per game and 16th in shooting percentage (10.0%).

Minnesota is 26th in 5-on-5 expected goals for (91.1). Those numbers are all worse than Tampa Bay’s. The Lightning are fifth this season in the NHL in both goals per game (3.6) and shooting percentage (11.3%). Brayden Point and Steven Stamkos have been two of the hottest Lightning players of late, with the former scoring four goals with three assists in the last five Tampa Bay games, while the latter has netted five goals with two helpers over the same span. Point scored the lone goal for the Lightning in the loss to Minnesota.

The Lightning have won seven of their last nine home games versus Minnesota.

Final Wild-Lightning Prediction & Pick

It’s not the tastiest of odds, but I’m taking Minnesota’s -178 price to cover the puck line.

Final Wild-Lightning Prediction & Pick: Minnesota Wild +1.5 (-178)