Avalanche vs. Lightning Odds & Picks: Our Best Bets for Game 4 of Stanley Cup Finals, Featuring a Nathan MacKinnon Player Prop
Dustin Bradford/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Nathan MacKinnon.
- The Colorado Avalanche meet the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup finals on Wednesday night.
- Nick Martin has identified three plays he like for Game 4, including a moneyline play and a Nathan MacKinnon prop.
- Check out all three of Martin's best bets for Game 4 below.
NHL betting analyst Nicholas Martin has found three plays ahead of Wednesday’s pivotal Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals between the Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lightning.
From moneyline plays to player props, check out all three of his top bets for Game 4 below.
Colorado Avalanche ML · -105 (Play to -110)
The Avalanche can be found at as high as -105 to take this contest, and we have some strong value backing the Avalanche to bounce back in this spot. I feel Colorado should still be favored.
The Avalanche clearly did not play their sharpest contest in the Game 3 loss, but with that said, the 6-2 final scoreline doesn’t convey the Avs’ overall play.
Obviously, Colorado will always need to control more of the overall play to find success considering the disparity in goaltending between Darcy Kuemper and Andrei Vasilevskiy, but I believe we’ll see the Avalanche do exactly that tonight.
Nazem Kadri was a full participant in the morning skate, and based on the fact that Nicolas Aube-Kubel remained out with the extras afterward, it’ quite likely Kadri will return.
If Kadri can play at anywhere near the level we saw prior to his injury, that will be a gigantic boost for Colorado. It could go a long way in helping shore up 5-on-5 play behind the MacKinnon line, which has still been dominant even if the puck hasn’t gone in yet.
Nikita Kucherov was injured late in Game 3 as well, and while he’s most likely going to play in this game, it would a significant loss for the Lightning if he can’t play to his full ability.
Nathan MacKinnon Anytime Goalscorer · +164 (Play to +155)
Scoring on Vasilevskiy and the Bolts at home has proven to be very tough this postseason, but the same could be said for shutting down Colorado’s ridiculously strong top-unit.
Based on the gameplay in Game 3, it was somewhat of a fluke the trio didn’t find the scoresheet. I believe they will tonight.
MacKinnon has yet to break through with a goal in the opening three contests of this Cup final, but it has been quite clear how involved he and the Avalanche’s top line has been.
In Game 3, MacKinnon generated a ridiculous 1.42 expected goals by himself off 13 shot attempts, and he now leads the series with 19 scoring chances in three games.
The slump is clearly getting to MacKinnon a little bit, and it was far from surprising to see that he spent extra time after practice yesterday working on releasing shots through a stick-check considering his otherworldly work ethic.
However, with his ridiculous skill set and the way Colorado has controlled play with him on the ice, it’s only a matter of time before he nets one in this series.
Playing MacKinnon to go over 4.5 shots could be reasonable as well, but I like backing him to find what will likely be a crucial goal at a long number tonight.
Valeri Nichushkin Over 0.5 Points · -140 (Play to -145)
Nichushkin has been brilliant all season and serves as another reason why Colorado’s clearly skating the deepest and most talented roster in hockey.
MacKinnon, Nichushkin and Gabriel Landeskog played to a 75.1% expected goals rate in Game 3 after a hard-to-believe 100% xGF rate in Game 2 and a 71% mark in Game 1.
Considering the number of attempts on goal Colorado has generated with Nichushkin on the ice, it’s far from surprising to see he has managed four points in the opening two games of this series.