Best Bets to Make for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals
The Stanley Cup Final begins tonight with Game 1 between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Colorado Avalanche.
The puck drops just before 8:30 pm ET.
We'll break down the same to give you help for your NHL betting.
Tampa Bay And Colorado Represent A Series Of Values
Tampa Bay is the two-time defending Stanley Cup Champions. Despite this, it is a big underdog for Game 1 on the road in Colorado. Imagine being a 2.3 to 2.6 Game 1 dog despite not being the team on a nine-night layoff.
The Lightning comes in fresh against Colorado after a six-game series win over the New York Rangers. After falling behind 2-0 in the series and 2-0 in Game 3, Tampa Bay rallied to win four straight games as the Rangers had no answers for the Lightning at even-strength. The series was inevitably over when Tampa Bay tightened up the penalty kill just enough.
Some will argue that the Colorado Avalanche has value as well. That is also true. Colorado does not get immensely impacted after prolonged rest.
I'm assuming Brayden Point and Nazem Kadri will play in Game 1. The offense possesses the spotlight because the defenses create offense. Both teams employ depth scoring.
Values are abundant as Tampa Bay is a Game 1 and series underdog. Pundits have argued if this was any other team than the Lightning, Colorado would be a lopsided favourite in this Stanley Cup Final.
With a series of so many expectations, what might just happen in Game 1? Let’s take a closer look.
Tampa Bay And Colorado: Keys To Game 1
Tampa Bay and Colorado both won four straight games to win their respective Conference Finals. How they did it was completely different.
Tampa Bay did it with defense, goaltending, and timely scoring. Colorado just rolled past Edmonton with bursts of offense. The Avalanche scored three straight goals three times in the Western Conference Final. It is that ability to strike which could tip momentum quickly.
How will Colorado respond to adversity from the champions? St. Louis gave them the closest test in Round 2. The Avalanche got bailed out some with the injury to Jordan Binnington, but they prevailed in six games. They responded to every challenge.
Whether Darcy Kuemper or Pavel Francouz starts in Game 1 matters little, they need to stop the shots the goalies need. It is that simple. Colorado thrives on speed, lateral movement, and the ability to use their offense to create and play keep-away with opposing teams.
Yes, Tampa needs to control Colorado’s defense. Cale Makar, Devon Toews, and Bowen Byram create matchup problems. Colorado will have their issues with Tampa Bay’s depth.
Officiating and special teams figure to play a role in this series. Colorado has a dangerous power play, but will there be a lot of penalties in this Stanley Cup Final?
Some Final Numbers Fun And New Props?
Ontario sports bettors should consider betting modestly in this Game 1.
Be smart and go easy. As for some prop bets, who wins Game 1 and much, much more below:
- Colorado in regulation: 1.90
- Tampa Bay Lightning Hedge in Regulation Possible: 2.90
- Colorado / Tampa Bay Over 6 goals: 1.87 (Check the number at 6.5)
- Nathan MacKinnon and Steven Stamkos anytime goal: 7.00
- Stay away from the “No Shutout” for the goalies (1.08 and 1.02 no good).
- Ondrej Palat Over 0.5 points: 1.83
- Nathan MacKinnon Over 4.5 shots: 1.77
- Andrei Vasilevskiy Over 32.5 saves: 1.87
- Cale Makar Over 1.5 points: see if prop exists. MacKinnon is 2.70
- Ryan MacDonagh Over 2.5 blocked shots: 1.74
- Starting Colorado goalie Under 27.5 saves: 1.95
Good luck, ladies and gentlemen. Let’s do that hockey!
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