NHL Prime Playoff Picks For June 15th - Stanley Cup Final

Chris Wassel
By , Updated on: Sep 4, 2022 08:00 PM
NHL Prime Playoff Picks For June 15th - Stanley Cup Final

Come check out our NHL Prime Playoff Picks for the Stanley Cup Final as Game 1 looms on Wednesday night!

With the Stanley Cup betting odds starting up, here are some numbers for this opener between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Colorado Avalanche. Let's peek at the current NHL Playoffs odds.

Wake Up The Colorado Avalanche

Honestly, this sounds crazy but yes, wake up the Colorado Avalanche! Consider that by Wednesday night, they will have had nine days worth of rest. All the rest in the world is good, but game preparation can only do so much. There is nothing like game action. Players get rusty. If one does not think so, look at how bad the Tampa Bay Lightning started their series against the New York Rangers. That Game 1 6-2 loss was a giant dud. It took them 2 1/2 games to get going. Colorado will not have that time.

Our plan is to hit the NHL Prime Playoff Picks of June 15th, 2022, at warp speed! Now, this series does feature two of the best offenses in the league and defenses as well. Yes, considerable differences exist as well. Tampa Bay has Andrei Vasilevskiy and Colorado has the tandem of Darcy Kuemper and Pavel Francouz. It appears Kuemper will start in Game 1 for Colorado now that he is fully healed from his eye injury.

Colorado expects to be the team that comes out rusty, and if there is a time for Tampa Bay to attack, it will be early in Game 1. Though Brayden Point is a question mark (likely returns at some point), the Lightning have enough of an offense to scare Colorado a good deal. Players like Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos, and Victor Hedman are a handful. Most forget about Anthony Cirelli, Ondrej Palat, Corey Perry, and Ross Colton, among others. Tampa has depth Edmonton did not.

The Stanley Cup Final features two of the best offensive units that have defenses that can transition to offense. Watching them showcasing their skills has been a lot of fun. We cover it all and look at the top online NHL betting sites.

So, Colorado Is Favored By That Much In Game 1?

It is intriguing that the Colorado Avalanche has a home-ice advantage against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Why Colorado is favored by that much in Game 1? That's a great question! For one, Colorado has dominated throughout most of the playoffs. They swept past Nashville and Edmonton. In between, they had a tough series versus St. Louis that illustrated their resiliency.

Arguments that Colorado would be favored more if it was anyone, but Tampa are warranted. The opening numbers even against Edmonton were outrageous because did anyone think the Oilers were going to win more than one game against Colorado? That certainly was not going to occur at home. Colorado is stacked with a top-six that includes Nathan MacKinnon, Nazem Kadri, Gabriel Landeskog, and Mikko Rantanen, just to name a few. Then Cale Makar and Devon Toews are on defense.

Ball Arena Is A Daunting Place To Play

Now, if that was not enough. Valeri Nichhuskin, J.T. Compher, and Andre Burakovsky likely would be on top-six offensive units somewhere too. These are players that can be moved up and down the lineup to fill needs and holes. Colorado's depth is partially why they average more than four goals a game at home. Ball Arena in Denver is a very daunting place to play.

Most tend to forget how good Colorado's offense looked against Edmonton. Tampa Bay backs down from no one, however. Again, the adventures in goaltending will be amazing. Yes, Vasilevskiy has the pedigree and has been in this spot many times. But Colorado's ability to transition and pass quickly is why they are one of our NHL Prime Playoff Picks for game number one. Now, what aids us here is that Colorado shakes the rust off faster. That is never a bad thing.

Colorado Avalanche To beat the Tampa Bay Lightning

Tampa Bay Did It Again Against New York

Tampa Bay did it again against New York and finds itself facing Colorado in Game 1. Now, a big part of that was Andrei Vasilevskiy again playing like the goaltender we are used to. In closeout games, the goaltender is almost automatic. Against New York, he gave up one goal each in Game 5 and Game 6. He made the saves the other Russian goalie could not. It was that simple. Combine that with an incredible series by Steven Stamkos (two goals in Game 6), and Tampa was on its way.

Honestly, Colorado is not New York. They will not bend but not break. The Avalanche plays a style more like Florida and Toronto. Toronto scared Tampa Bay, forcing them to seven games. Colorado is even better than Toronto. This will be the Lightning's toughest test in their last three playoff runs combined.

Colorado and Tampa Bay Other NHL Prime Playoff Picks

Colorado and Tampa Bay help us with other NHL Prime Playoff Picks. So, how about the over/under or maybe a prop or two?

Let's ride with the over at six goals Wednesday night. Expect the goals to flow in Colorado as the Avalanche and Lightning get acclimated. The Colorado team with over of 3.5 goals can be considered too, along with Tampa Bay at over 2.5 if one feels risk is needed. Consider the Under props on the goaltenders as a possibility too. Anyway, the over remains the safest bet of the bunch.

Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lighting To score more than six goals

Hey, the NBA Playoffs May End Thursday in Boston...

Here are some of the best NBA Finals Playoff numbers. Go bet a little on Game 6 in Boston.

Meet the author

Chris Wassel

Chris Wassel is a veteran sports writer with over 20 years of experience publishing thoughtful analysis and insightful perspectives on everything from hockey to basketball, football, and more. As a seasoned journalist, Chris has established himself as a leading voice o...

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