NHL Odds, Preview, Expert Pick & Prediction: Avalanche vs. Kraken Game 4 (Monday, April 24)
Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images. Pictured: Jamie Oleksiak (Kraken)
- Seattle looks to even the series on Monday evening when it hosts Colorado.
- The Avs have struggled offensively, but they maintain a strong defensive structure.
- That has been true for Seattle as well, and that resulted in Grant White's betting pick of the evening.
Avalanche vs. Kraken Game 4 Odds
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetRivers. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.|
The Seattle Kraken face a pivotal challenge on Monday night. Down 2-1 in its series against the Central Division winners, the Colorado Avalanche, Seattle faces a crucial test of trying to level the series before traveling back to Denver for Game 5.
Like many teams, home ice has been a refuge for a young Kraken squad. Although they face the daunting task of knocking off the defending Stanley Cup Champions, we expect Seattle to put its best foot forward.
The Avalanche have looked impressive since dropping the series opener at Ball Arena. Colorado has outplayed the Kraken in the two games since, albeit by less of a margin than most people anticipated.
Therein lies the dilemma with the Avalanche, as they’ve been plagued by inconsistency to end the campaign.
The Avs have outplayed their opponents in just five of their past eight amid a dip in offensive production. Nathan MacKinnon and company have been held to nine or fewer high-danger chances in all but three of those contests, surpassing 25 scoring chances once.
Still, diminished production has yet to impact output, with the Avs averaging 3.3 goals per game over that stretch.
The offensive well should start to dry as scoring balances with chances.
Nevertheless, Colorado remains a pre-eminent defensive squad. The Avalanche allowed the second-fewest scoring chances in the regular season and tightened their defensive zone play to end the season.
The Central Division winners have limited the Kraken to nine or fewer quality opportunities in two of three.
That extends their streak from the regular season in which only one opponent has gone north of nine high-danger chances over their past seven.
The Avs might struggle to score goals, but their defensive integrity remains intact.
Seattle came flying out of the gates in Game 1, attempting 15 high-danger and 27 scoring opportunities in a 3-1 win over the favored Avalanche.
However, the Kraken have hit an offensive wall in the two games since then, totaling 18 quality opportunities and 37 scoring chances.
In reconciling the Kraken’s regular season standard with their playoff performances, Game 1 appears to be the exception, not the rule.
The Kraken ranked in the bottom 10 in the NHL in most production metrics.
Moreover, they’ve failed to gain any momentum in the latter part of the campaign. Dating back to the regular season, Seattle has been held to nine or fewer quality chances in eight of its last 12.
Scoring chances have also dried up, with the NHL’s newest franchise eclipsing 24 opportunities just twice across the sample.
But Seattle’s system isn’t premised on scoring.
The Kraken play a robust defensive game focused on limiting their opponents’ chances. They ranked in the top 10 in scoring and high-danger chances allowed, putting themselves among the league’s elite.
More importantly, the Kraken had success with that suffocating structure early in the series, and we expect them to get back to that mentality on Monday night.
Avalanche vs. Kraken Pick
You wouldn’t think so, but the Kraken have more scoring depth than the Avs. Seattle ended the year with six 20-goal scorers compared to Colorado’s three.
The emphasis tonight for the Kraken should be neutralizing the Avalanche’s top scorers and relying on their secondary and tertiary scorers to buoy their chances.
We’re betting Seattle prevails in a low-scoring affair and are backing the underdog hosts.
Pick:Kraken +135 | Under 6 (-115)
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