Stanley Cup Final Game 4 expert predictions: Betting preview, puckline, odds for Lightning vs. Avalanche
2022 Stanley Cup Final: Lightning vs. Avalanche odds, NHL picks, Game 4 prediction from proven hockey model
Avalanche vs. Lightning odds, prediction: 2022 Stanley Cup Final picks, Game 4 bets from expert on 137-71 run
After getting rolled in the first two games of the 2022 Stanley Cup Final, the Tampa Bay Lightning were able to get on the board with a 6-2 win in Game 3. The difference for the Lightning was their ability to test Colorado Avalanche goaltender Darcy Kuemper. Coming into the series, I picked the Lightning to win because of their advantage in net. Andrei Vasilevskiy has been the best goaltender on the planet for a few years now, and Kuemper has struggled in the postseason.
That edge for the Bolts was on full display in Game 3.
On more than one occasion, Vasilevskiy stopped what looked like a sure goal. Unlike the first two games in Denver, he was locked in for a full 60 minutes at home in Game 3. He finished the game with 1.47 goals saved above average on a total of 3.47 expected goals against, according to Natural Stat Trick.
On the other end of the ice, not only did Kuemper fail to make a big save, but he couldn't come up with relatively easy stops he probably should have made. Anthony Cirelli lost control of the puck on a break, and it slid through Kuemper's legs and into the net. Pat Maroon banked a short-side shot off Kuemper for a goal from a tough angle. So with Colorado down 5-2 in Game 3, Kuemper was pulled in the second period. By that point, he had allowed 2.28 goals above expected on 2.72 expected goals against, per Natural Stat Trick.
Game 4 of the 2022 NHL Stanley Final is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday at Amalie Arena between the Avalanche and Lightning. Before placing any wagers for tonight’s game, we’ll give you all the betting insight you need to know, including the latest odds, trends, and predictions.
After getting embarrassed in Game 2 last weekend, the Lightning dominated the Avalanche 6-2 at home in Game 3 on Monday. With the victory, Tampa Bay has now won eight-straight games at home, and the Avs suffered their first playoff road loss. The Lightning asserted themselves from the first period and cashed in on Colorado’s miscues. Steven Stamkos was one of the stars for Tampa Bay, scoring his first goal of the Stanley Cup and recording two points. The Lightning will need Stamkos, Ondrej Palat, and goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy to carry their momentum into a pivotal Game 4. Vasilevskiy was outstanding in net for the Lightning, allowing two goals on 39 shots from the Avs.
The Tampa Bay Lightning expect to have Nikita Kucherov in the lineup for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday, but not Brayden Point.
Lightning coach Jon Cooper said Wednesday he expects to have the same lineup as he did for Monday's Game 3 win over the Colorado Avalanche.
Kucherov appeared to have injured his leg after a collision with Avalanche defenceman Devon Toews in the third period of Tampa's 6-2 win in Game 3, which trimmed Colorado's series lead to 2-1
Point didn't play Game 3 after returning from injury for the first two games.
"Not ruled out of the series but out for tonight," Cooper said.
Watch Game 4 on Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT on Sportsnet.
The Tampa Bay Lightning take on the Colorado Avalanche in Game 4 of the 2022 Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday night at 8 p.m. ET at Amalie Arena in Tampa. The Lightning picked up a 6-2 win in Game 3 on Monday night to make it a 2-1 Colorado lead. Tampa Bay will have another chance to overcome a deficit to tie things up.
The Lightning were able to win four in a row after dropping two games against the Rangers last round. The Rangers aren’t the Avalanche. Tampa Bay is dealing with injuries to multiple stars now. Brayden Point is doubtful for Game 4 and RW Nikita Kucherov is expected to play after being injured in Game 3. The Lightning will need another big performance from Andrei Vasilevskiy to help even the series.
The Avalanche are expected to be without forward Andre Burakovsky for Game 4. Nazem Kadri has a shot at returning but it seems unlikely. So Colorado will be down two key forwards. Winning the first two games was huge for the Avs. Darcy Kuemper will need to show up against Tampa Bay in Game 4.
The Colorado Avalanche had been invincible on the road during the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs, winning their first seven contests while scoring at least four goals in six of them. The bubble finally burst for the Western Conference champions on Monday, however, as they were outplayed by the Tampa Bay Lightning en route to a 6-2 loss. The Avalanche attempt to bounce back from just their third overall defeat this postseason and move within one win of their first championship since 2001 when they visit the Lightning for Game 4 of the 2022 Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday.
Opening face-off at Amalie Arena in Tampa is set for 8 p.m. ET. Both teams are listed at -110 (risk $110 to win $100) on the money line in the latest Avalanche vs. Lightning odds from Caesars Sportsbook, while the over-under for total goals scored is six. Before making any Lightning vs. Avalanche picks or 2022 Stanley Cup Final predictions, you need to see what SportsLine NHL expert Matt Severance has to say.
Severance is a well-connected writer and handicapper who has worked in the industry since 2005. He is SportsLine's top NHL handicapper, going 137-71-4 in his last 212 NHL picks and returning well over $3,000 for $100 players. Anyone who has followed him is way up.
The demise of the Lightning might have been overstated. Tampa Bay bounced back in Game 3 to beat the Avalanche 6-2 and set up a critical Game 4 on Wednesday night in Tampa. There are plenty of storylines to go around for this game that will see the Lightning either even the series at 2-2 or hand the Avalanche a chance to win the Stanley Cup on home ice on Friday night.
Will Avalanche coach Jared Bednar elect to start backup goalie Pavel Francouz over starter Darcy Kuemper in Game 4? Kuemper struggled in Game 3 before getting pulled in the second period and he hasn’t been at his best during these playoffs. Francouz is 6-0 in these playoffs with a .906 save percentage while Kuemper’s .892 save percentage is below par.
For Tampa Bay, the injuries are starting to pile up. Lightning star Nikita Kucherov picked up a lower-body injury late in Game 3 when the game was over and he missed the final minutes of the game. Brayden Point missed Game 3 and isn’t likely to play in Game 4 after not playing at his usual level in the first two games of this series. Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said he expects Kucherov to play in Game 4 and Point is doubtful.
However, there is evidence to suggest Kuemper can turn things around. In the regular season, Kuemper ranked fourth in the NHL with 25.19 goals saved above average. The difference, though, is that Kuemper has simply not looked comfortable since the later half of the series against the Blues.
By contrast, Vasilevskiy has allowed two or fewer goals five times in his last seven starts. Throughout the 2022 postseason, Vasilevskiy ranks fourth in goals saved above average with 5.09 -- and that is after a disastrous 7-0 loss to the Avalanche in Game 2.
Now just one win away from leveling the Stanley Cup Final, the Lightning must continue to make Kuemper work, which is something they didn't do much in Denver. In those first two games, Tampa Bay generated a combined 2.80 expected goals, and they were just one shot away from winning Game 1.
No position in hockey has more control over the outcome of a game than the goaltender, and luckily for the Lightning, that's the one obvious edge they have over the Avalanche. If Tampa Bay is going to come back and win this Stanley Cup Final, they will have to take advantage of that by peppering Kuemper early and often.
It's no secret that the Tampa Bay Lightning will join some elite company if they're able to win their third consecutive Stanley Cup. But what about the Colorado Avalanche? Could they also be the franchise that's on the cusp on something special in the 2022 Stanley Cup Final.
In order to have the makings of a dynasty, a team needs a few championships under their belt. That's where I think the Avalanche are going to be headed when the dust settles on the 2022 Stanley Cup Final.
Can the Avalanche hoist the Stanley Cup this season?
This is one of the more evenly-matched Stanley Cup Finals that the hockey world has seen in quite some time. There's no debating that. There's also no debating that the Lightning have the advantage in between the pipes, due to the super human efforts of Andrei Vasilevskiy.
Still, the Avalanche possess just too deep of a roster to get tripped up in a series like this.
The Avalanche won both of their matchups against the Lightning during the regular season. Colorado came away with a 4-3 shootout win and a 3-2 win behind three-point performances from Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog.
Avalanche vs. Lightning live stream
Date: Wednesday, June 22
Start time: 8 p.m. ET
TV channel: ABC
Live stream: WatchESPN, ESPN app
If you aren’t around a TV to check out this NHL matchup, you can stream the game via WatchESPN or the ESPN app. Keep in mind, however, that you’ll either need a cable login with access to watch ESPN or a subscription to ESPN+. If you don’t have a cable login to access ESPN for a live stream, you can sign up for a monthly subscription to ESPN+ for $6.99 or pay $69.99 for a full year of access.