The Stanley Cup Playoffs have made it into the conference finals. We’re down to the final four teams and a spot in the Stanley Cup Finals is on the line this week. In the Eastern Conference, the No. 2 seed Tampa Bay Lightning will face off against the No. 6 seed New York Islanders. In the Western Conference, the No. 1 seed Vegas Golden Knights face the No. 3 seed Dallas Stars.
The full series dates and times have not yet been announced, but Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals is officially scheduled. The puck will drop in Toronto at 8 p.m. ET on Monday, September 7th. The game will air on NBCSN, CBC, TVAS, and SN. The rest of the series will be finalized shortly.
The Lightning are favorites in Game 1 at DraftKings Sportsbook, while we do not have a series line as of initial publication. Tampa Bay is -148 on the money line for Game 1, while New York is +128. The puck line is 1.5, with New York +1.5 priced at -230 and Tampa Bay -1.5 priced at +188. The total goals sits at 5, with the over at -127 and the under at +105.
We don’t have a series line yet, but we do have odds on exact outcome of the series. Three of the four potential Lightning outcomes (4-1, 4-2, 4-3) are favored over the Islanders outcomes. The Islanders in 7 is the first outcome in their favor, at +650. Lightning in five is the favorite at +385, followed by Lightning in six at +415. Over 5.5 games is currently installed at -162, with under 5.5 games at +135.
Tampa Bay entered the playoffs claiming the No. 2 seed after winning two of three games in round robin play. They beat the Columbus Blue Jackets in five games, including a 3-2 win in an epic 5OT Game 1. This is the Lightning’s sixth trip to the conference finals since entering the league as an expansion team in 1992. They’ve twice advanced out of the conference finals round, winning the Stanley Cup in 2004 and losing in the Stanley Cup Finals in 2015.
Lightning center Brayden Point is tied for fourth in the league with 18 postseason points. Right winger Nikita Kucherov is tied for 10th with 16 points. Goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy is eighth in the league with a 1.91 GAA on a .931 save percentage.
New York entered the playoffs in the qualifying where they beat the Florida Panthers in four games to advance to the first round as the No. 6 seed. They thumped the Washington Capitals in five games and then edged out the Flyers in seven games to advance to the third round. This is the Islanders first trip to the conference finals since losing to the Montreal Canadiens in 1992-93. They last won in the conference finals in 1983-84 when they beat the Canadiens.
Islanders right winger Josh Bailey is tied for eighth in the league with 17 postseason points. Center Brock Nelson is tied for 13th with 15 points. Goalie SemyonVarlamov is 11th in the league with a 2.00 GAA on a .921 save percentage.
Below is a full rundown of the Lightning-Islanders series and how to watch it. The games are all available at NBCSports.com/live.
Lightning vs. Islanders series info
Game 1: Islanders vs. Lightning — Mon Sep 7, 8 p.m. ET, NBCSN/CBC/SN/TVAS
Game 2: Islanders vs. Lightning — Wed Sep 9, 8 p.m. ET, NBCSN/CBC/SN/TVAS
Game 3: Lightning vs. Islanders — Fri Sep 11, 8 p.m. ET, USA/CBC/SN/TVAS
Game 4: Lightning vs. Islanders — Sun Sep 13, 3 p.m. ET, NBC/CBC/SN/TVAS
Game 5: Islanders vs. Lightning — Tue Sep 15, 8 p.m. ET, NBCSN/CBC/SN/TVAS*
Game 6: Lightning vs. Islanders— Thu Sep 17, 8 p.m. ET, NBCSN/CBC/SN/TVAS*
Game 7: Islanders vs. Lightning — Sat Sep 19, 7:30 p.m. ET, NBC/CBC/SN/TVAS*