This Week in the NHL – Odds, Picks, and Previews

Lightning vs Avalanche Odds, Picks, and Preview

The Tampa Bay Lightning are the two-time defending Stanley Cup champions but it’s the Colorado Avalanche who are the pick to win the 2021-22 Stanley Cup final.

Colorado is opening as the -190 favorites in the Stanley Cup final odds. The Avs have been favored to win since the opening Stanley Cup odds were first posted in July of 2021.

Game 1 of the best-of-seven Stanley Cup final series is set for 8 pm ET on Wednesday, June 15 at Ball Arena. ABC is carrying the broadcast, while CBC will provide the action to Canadian viewers.

Series Odds

Currently DraftKings Sportsbook has the best odds for betting on the Avalanche at         (-175) but have the Lightning set at (+150). Other Sportsbooks such as BetMGM and Fanduel have better odds when betting on the Lightning at (+155). 

Average Odds across multiple Sportsbooks:

Colorado Avalanche: (-181)

Tampa Bay Lightning: (+153)

Colorado vs Tampa Bay Betting Trends

Tampa Bay is the first club to reach three Stanley Cup finals in successions since the Edmonton Oilers (1983-85). No NHL team has won three in a row since the New York Islanders won four straight Cups from 1980-83. The Lightning have won 11 playoff series in succession.

Colorado has never trailed in any series this spring. Tampa Bay was facing elimination down 3-2 to Toronto in the first round and were trailing 2-0 to the New York Rangers before rattling off four straight victories. The Lightning are 7-1 at home in the postseason, with seven straight victories. Colorado is 7-0 on the road in the playoffs.

Tampa Bay’s current roster has a combined 204 games of Stanley Cup Final experience, led by forward Pat Maroon (18).

Avalanche vs Lightning 2021-22 Results

The Avalanche won both regular-season meetings. Each game was decided by one goal. Tampa Bay forward Corey Perry (Dallas 2020, Montreal 2021) is the second player in NHL history to play with three different teams in three successive Stanley Cup finals.

Colorado is in the Cup final for the first time since 2001. The Avs have won both of their previous Cup final appearances. Tampa Bay is 3-1 in previous Cup final series.

Key Injuries a Factor for Both Teams

The Avalanche will definitely be without defenseman Samuel Girard (broken sternum). Center Nazem Kadri (finger surgery) and winger Andrew Cogliano (hand surgery) are uncertain starters. Goalie Darcy Kuemper (upper-body injury) has been cleared to play.

Tampa Bay has been without top goal scorer Brayden Point (lower-body injury) since the opening playoff round. However, he’s resumed skating and came close to playing in Game 6 against the Rangers.

Lightning vs Avalanche Series Pick

This series has all the makings of a compelling set that could go the distance. Both sides are loaded with all the qualities necessary to win a Stanley Cup.

Tampa Bay’s Victor Hedman is a past Norris Trophy winner. Colorado defenseman Cale Makar is the favorite in this season’s Norris Trophy odds. The Lightning also suit up Vezina (Vasilevskiy), Conn Smythe (Vasilevskiy, Nikita Kucherov), Hart (Kucherov), Art Ross (Kucherov) and Rocket Richard (Steven Stamkos) Trophy winners.

Colorado might not have the same amount of hardware in the club’s trophy case but in Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landskog and Mikko Rantanen, the Avs are also loaded with talent. They also have a slight edge in depth and that could be the difference-maker in a long series.

Series Picks: 

Tampa Bay (+155)

Conn Smythe Winner – Andrei Vasilevskiy (+400)

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