The Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lightning meet for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final Wednesday at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla., with the Avalanche leading the best-of-7 series 2-1. Puck drop is set for 8 p.m. ET (ABC/ESPN+). Below, we look at the Avalanche vs. Lightning Stanley Cup Final Game 4 odds and lines, and make our expert NHL picks, predictions and bets.
After dropping the first 2 games in Denver, the Lightning responded at home in Game 3 behind a 6-2 victory Monday.
The Avs started out well enough in Game 3 as LW Gabriel Landeskog opened the scoring with a power-play goal (PPG) in the opening period. But they were outscored 6-1 from that point forward as the Lightning has made a series of it.
The Lightning defended its home ice, and took advantage of the electric crowd at Amalie Arena. Tampa is now 11-4 in the past 15 games overall, and 41-15 in the previous 56 at home.
Avalanche at Lightning odds and lines
Odds provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 6:16 a.m. ET.
Money line: Avalanche -110 (bet $110 to win $100) | Lightning -110 (bet $110 to win $100)
Against the spread (ATS): Avalanche +1.5 (-290) | Lightning -1.5 (+200)
Over/Under (O/U): 6.5 (O: +122 | U: -155)
Avalanche at Lightning projected goalies
Darcy Kuemper (8-3-0, 2.76 GAA, .892 SV%, 1 SO – postseason) vs. Andrei Vasilevskiy (13-7-0, 2.57 GAA, .920 SV%, 1 SO – postseason)
Kuemper, who posted a shutout in Game 2 behind 16 saves, allowed 5 goals on just 22 shots before getting pulled in favor of Pavel Francouz midway through the second period of Game 3.
Vasilevskiy was back in business in Game 3, allowing just 2 Landeskog PPG on 39 shots. That was the most rubber Vasilevskiy has faced since making 49 saves in a 2-0 shutout win in Game 4 of the Florida series May 23.
Avalanche at Lightning picks and predictions
Lightning 4, Avalanche 2
The LIGHTNING (-110) are a strong play on home ice as the 2-time defending Stanley Cup champs look to even the series 2-2 and head back to Denver looking to seize home-ice advantage. But a lot has to happen before that is even a thought.
Tampa Bay looked good with 5 even-strength goals and a power-play marker in Game 3, chasing Kuemper in the process. If Vasilevskiy can retain his Game 3 form, watch out.
Against the spread
TAMPA BAY -1.5 (+200) is worth playing as a small-unit wager for the chance to double up. The Lightning covered the puck line in Game 3 as favorites and covered the puck line in Game 1 as underdogs.
I expect this game to be closer. However, for Tampa to win by 2 goals, we might have to sweat it out in the end, looking for the empty-net goal to inch us across the finish line.
The lean is to the UNDER 6.5 (-155).
With this kind of juice, as well as the fact the Over has cashed in each of the first 3 games, I would only play this total lightly, or not at all.
It could be worth waiting to see if the O/U line drops to 6 and then a small Over wager is the way to go.
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