The Colorado Avalanche beat the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals with a 4-3 overtime win, but the Bolts were competitive despite not playing their best hockey.
For Saturday’s rematch, Tampa opened shorter on the money line than Wednesday. If Andrei Vasilevskiy can start harder, this calmer and more experienced Tampa team could go into Game 3 with a series tie.
We bring you our free NHL tips and predictions for Lightning vs Avalanche.
Lightning vs Avalanche match 2 odds
This odds widget represents the best available odds for every betting market from regulated sports betting providers.
The Avalanche opened at -175 favorites in the opener before closing at -145. They opened at -160 on the Game 2 moneyline and quickly moved to -155 after the open.
The total also shows some discrepancies from Game 1, where it closed at -120 to the Over 6. On Thursday morning, the total opened at 6 but trailed the Under by five points despite a 4-3 final in overtime on Wednesday.
Use the live odds widget above to follow all future line movement right up until the puck drops, and be sure to check the full NHL odds before betting to ensure you get the best number.
Lightning vs Avalanche match 2 predictions
Predictions were made on 6/16/2022 at 1:00 PM ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.
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Lightning vs Avalanche game 1 information
• location: Ball Arena, Denver, CO
• date: Saturday 18 June 2022
• puck drop: 8:00 p.m. ET
• TV: ABC, Sportsnet
Lightning vs Avalanche Stanley Cup Finals Odds (COL Leads 1-0)
Lightning vs Avalanche Game 2 Betting Preview
Lightning: No injuries to report.
Avalanche: Nazem Kadri F (doubtful), Andrew Cogliano F (doubtable).
Find our latest NHL injury reports here.
Head-to-head record between Lightning and Avalanche since 2016-17
Lightning: 6-5 SU, 36 goals for.
Avalanche: 5-6 SU, 34 goals for.
to know the betting trend
The Lightning have won 4-0 in their last four Saturday games. Find more NHL betting trends for Lightning vs Avalanche.
Lightning vs Avalanche Match 2 tips and predictions
Our side and total predictions are based on our analysis of the line and total score in that game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.
The Tampa Bay Lightning got off to a terrible start in the opener of the Stanley Cup Finals when Andrei Vasilevskiy scored some unusually weak goals in the first frame. The Bolts fought their way back into the game and forced overtime thanks to some shaky goalies from Darcy Kuemper, but the biggest takeaway for us from Game 1 is that despite a poor performance, Tampa Bay had a chance to win.
The xGoal and High Danger Chance fights were easily won by the Avs, but Tampa still found a way to erase a multi-goal lead and did so with just 23 shots and 1.71 xGoals. Colorado starting goaltender Darcy Kuemper made his first start since the third round, in which he retired with an upper-body injury. He had posted a mediocre sub-.900 save rate before coming to the shelf and all looked like an unreliable goalie on Wednesday.
Kuemper finished with -0.75 goals, which was above expectations and we wouldn’t be surprised if he didn’t end the streak. Wednesday’s overtime win was the fifth straight game the Netminder failed to finish with a save percentage above .900.
The Avs have the more explosive offense and better speed and transition play in the neutral zone, but also have the Toronto Maple Leafs and Florida Panthers who eliminated the Bolts in the earlier rounds.
After the game, Colorado coach Jared Bednar said he spent a lot of time watching the Maple Leafs play their seven-game streak with Lightning because he “sees a lot of similarities between the Leafs’ players and staff and ours.”
The only problem with this is that Jon Cooper made major adjustments to eliminate the Leafs’ even-strength speed and transition play. Tampa has the experience and skill to do it again with the Avs.
Vasilevskiy settled in after a rough first three-goal goal and kept the Bolts in the game by stopping everything he saw in the second and third halves. With Lightning proving they can score even with very few chances, a sharper Big Cat early in Game 2 could see Tampa Bay return home with a 1-1 series.
Andrei Vasilevskiy in the 2022 playoffs
1-3, 3.99 GAA, 0.884 Save %
Game 2 – 7
11-3, 1.90 GAA, 0.939 Save %
— Sportsnet Statistics (@SNstats) June 16, 2022
If this becomes a high-scoring streak, Tampa can go toe-to-toe as with the Leafs, but if the Blitz can slow down the faster Avalanche, the advantage certainly swings with the team with the better goaltender.
The books picked this up as well, as the Bolts opened at +150 in Game 1 (closed at +125) and opened at +140 in Game 2 (now at +135). Colorado dominated Game 1 but somehow needed OT to claim the win. That could go a long way in the Tampa locker room.
Tampa lost its first game 5-0 to the Maple Leafs and 6-2 to the Rangers before hitting back 2 in both games.
forecast: Lightning Moneyline (+135 at bet365)
Includes NHL betting analysis
Supporters had to shake their heads after the first half of Game 1 with four goals. The goals weren’t even of high quality as Vasilevskiy gave up two softies early, including his first five-hole goal allowed of the postseason. It was an unusual first sight for the visitors who settled in after the first break. The live total after the first frame was 8.5 until the over.
Although the Blitz could close the door in the second and third periods, Kuemper couldn’t at the other end, allowing two quick goals in the second – one on a 2-on-2 and the other on a weak wrister from the point. Kuemper also looked awkward at the Lightning’s first goal.
Trusting a goaltender who has 3.53 goals against average and .853 SV% in his last five playoff games is going to take a lot for the underman to concede. Colorado has shown they can make up for their netminder’s underplay offensively, but saying that, we’ll have to lean on the over in Game 2.
We’re aware of recency bias and we were down in Game 1, but if Tampa can score goals at the Colorado starter so easily, we could easily see another series like Tampa vs. Toronto. In this series, the over has been hit fairly easily in five consecutive games after the opening contest.
Both clubs can score points in the third row as Artturi Lehkonen is on the wing with Darren Helm and Logan O’Connor for the Avs, while the Bolts have better offensive depth as their third row currently has Brayden Point in the middle between Nick Paul exhibits and Ross Colton. Both bluelines also have elite scoring in Victor Hedman and Cale Makar.
Ultimately, that total depends on Kuemper’s play at net, and after Game 1’s performance, we can’t trust him to shut down the bolts – even with the minimal number of shots.
forecast: Over 6 (-105 at bet365)
After Game 1 we have a much better understanding of each team’s line-up, which is huge when you look at prop plays as a lot of that has to do with chances.
Colorado’s Nazem Kadri was back in practice Thursday, but he’s just picked up a racquet for the first time after thumb surgery, so we’re pessimistic he’ll pick up Saturday night.
JT Compher centers the second line and should be a target for prop players. Valeri Nichushkin had a goal and an assist on Wednesday while also making a team effort with six shots in the net and another good Av is on target. However, we go across the ice and bring in a front row winger for a very reasonable -125 at Caesars to score a point.
Ondrej Palat currently has 17 points in 18 playoff games this postseason and plays in the Bolts’ top line with Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov. He had a beautiful 2v2 goal in Game 1 when Kucherov did the hard work and Palat just had to direct the puck in goal. As of May 30, no NHL player has more points than the Tampa winger in nine to seven games (five goals, four assists).
He had the team’s best xgoals 5-on-5 on Wednesday and saw plenty of time in the second power play session. When the Flash returns to the series, the unsung Palat will play a big part in it. His linemates have a .5 aggregate score at -150 and -170 to the over.
Choose: Ondrej Palate over 0.5 points (-125)
Statistics from Covers, Moneypuck, Natural Stat Trick and NHL.com
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