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OddsJam’s NHL experts take you through the betting odds, best bets, picks and predictions for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals between the Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lightning in Tampa, FL on June 20, 2022.
|Avalanche Win Percentage||49.54%|
|Lightning Win Percentage||50.46%|
|Avalanche Spread||-1.5 at +239|
|Lightning Spread||+1.5 at -298|
|Avalanche-Lightning Over / Under||5.5|
|Game Date & Time||June 20, 8:00 p.m. ET|
The OddsJam Perfect Line has the Tampa Bay Lightning winning Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals on June 20, 2022, in Tampa with 50.46% confidence. The line has it nearly a pick em.
Despite that, I’m looking for the Avalanche to keep momentum even on the road. Colorado has been the hottest and most prolific offense in the postseason and I don’t see that changing for game 3. The Lightning defense game plan has been to sellout on the Avalanche best players. But, the Avalanche have a ton of options on offense and their balanced attack will prove to be too much to handle.
Avalanche 5 Lightning 3
The Avalanche exploded for 7 goals Saturday night on their way to a shutout win and 2-0 series lead. Colorado got the scoring party started early and led a consistent barrage of offense all night long. Unlike game 1 the Lightning had no answers for the Avalanche’ speed and depth. Consistency of attack is something that was missing from Game 1.
But the Avs certainly found their groove as well, scoring at least 2 goals in each period. Colorado did a much better job of getting their stars involved. Cale Makar got on the board with 2 goals, one assisted by Nathan MacKinnon.
The series mercifully heads to Tampa Bay, as the Lightning leave Colorado dejected and searching for answers. The Lightning enter Game 3 as slight underdogs, with many books having this as a pick em. Oddsmakers seem to be losing faith that Tampa can keep up with the Avalanche attack.
In their back-to-back championship run, the Bolts have not run into an offense as prolific as Colorado’s. Doubt is starting to creep in that run is over, as the Avalanche dominance continues to be the story of these playoffs.
The main challenge for the Avalanche will be to maintain focus and energy as they travel to Tampa for Games 3 and 4.
When facing an experienced team like the Lightning, the smallest of let downs can lead to disaster. In Tampa, the key to success will be keeping up their balanced attack.
The Lightning have done a good job of keeping MacKinnon quiet. But, with other players like Valeri Nichushkin and Andre Burakovsky stepping up, the Avs are in a good position to keep up their pace.
It felt like the Lightning had a little bit of momentum after an impressive defensive performance at the end of Game 1. However, that went out the window after Game 2, as they gave up 7 goals on the way to a shutout loss. As the Lightning head home, they need to get back to their foundation of lockdown defense. They’ve proven they can’t keep pace with the Avs in a shootout style game.
Head coach Jon Cooper is tasked with game planning for an offense that can score at will against a variety of different looks. The Lightning have to mix up schemes and keep their rotations crisp. They’ve done a decent job of locking down the Avs stars. But now they can’t just sellout on MacKinnon and Makar and must play a complete defensive game
I’m not expecting a let down for the Avalanche on the road in Game 3. Their confidence and momentum have carried them through the playoffs and the Finals.
On the flip side, Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy has been having a crisis of confidence throughout the playoffs. He’s been having uncharacteristically bad games, in which he’s let in a ton of goals.
I’m loving the value here on even money for the Avs to score 3 goals. Colorado’s offense has been lethal regardless of home or away this postseason, so I’m riding the hot hand in Game 3.