The Tampa Bay Lightning barely made it back to the Stanley Cup Final, edging the New York Islanders 1-0 in Game 7 of the semifinals on Friday, but they are heavy favorites to win a second consecutive championship.
The Lightning and the Canadiens begin the best-of-seven finals on Monday, with Montreal chasing its first title in 28 years.
Tampa Bay is listed as a -280 favorite by PointsBet, meaning a $28 bet would win $10 if the Lightning prevail. Montreal is posted at +230, so a $10 wager would win $23 should the Canadiens emerge as champs.
DraftKings has the Lightning at -250 and the Canadiens at +210, while BetMGM lists Tampa Bay at -250 and Montreal at +200. FanDuel has Tampa Bay at -260 and Montreal at +220.
At the start of the season, the reigning champion Lightning were the second favorite to claim the Cup at +750, trailing only the Colorado Avalanche (+650).
The Canadiens were the 12th choice among the 31 NHL teams at +2600 prior to the season.
Montreal entered the playoffs with the lowest point total of the 16 playoff teams, 59. Tampa Bays was tied for the eighth-best points haul, 75.
The Canadiens eliminated the Vegas Golden Knights in a six-game semifinal series that concluded Thursday.
–Field Level Media