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Colorado Avalanche against Tampa Bay Lightning Predictions, Picks
The Tampa Bay Lightning hopes to tie the Stanley Cup by winning Game Four at home. Although the Lightning dropped Games One and Two, they returned to winning ways in Game Three. The first goal was scored by Colorado just eight minutes into the game. However, Ondrej Palt and Anthony Cirelli scored another two goals shortly after. Tampa began the Second Period strongly and led by 1.5 minutes. Three minutes later, Colorado got a goal but it was not the last. Three more goals in the Second Period were scored by Colorado, and they won 6-2.
The Colorado Avalanche’s defense was terrible in Game Three. They gave up six goals on 33 shots and did not stand much of a chance. They need to play better hockey and be more aggressive in this game. Cale Makar and Devon Toews are the first to start this defensive effort. Toews and Makar are first liners and averaging a TOI over 25 minutes. They will be the first line and the voice for second- and third-line defensemen if they play solid hockey.
Darcy Kuemper was the only one to get all three Stanley Cup wins in net. While he was good in Games One, Two and Three, he couldn’t save Game Three. Although it is not clear if Kuemper will start Game Four or Pavel Francouz, it does not really matter. Both are excellent netminders, and they need to be at their best in this most important game of their careers. The Tampa Bay Lightning must find their offensive fire again in Game Four. The Lightning struggled with the offensive spark in Games One, Two and Three but proved that it is possible to be the top team in the league when they have it in Game Four. Ondrej Palt, Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov will be needed to ignite that spark. The Tampa offense can score easily if these veterans approach the game with the right mindset and energy.
Andrei Vasilevskiy was an impediment in Game Three. He only gave up two goals on 39 shots and did not give Colorado a chance. Vasilevksiy, Tampa’s x factor and reason why the Lightning are in Stanley Cup.
This game won’t be close, but it will prove to be an exciting one for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Their only loss in Playoffs is one, so this game will not be a blowout. However, the hometown Tampa Bay Lightning will win it.
Head-to-Head: Colorado Avalanche vs Tampa Bay Lightning
Colorado Avalanche Head-to-Head Tampa Bay Lightning Jared Bednar Head Coach Jon Cooper 56-19-7 (1st in Central Division) Standing 51-23-8 (3rd in Atlantic Division) Leaders Cale Makar (26) Points Nikita Kucherov (26) Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog (11) Goals Ondrej Palat, Steven Stamkos (10) Cale Makar, Mikko Rantanen (19) Assists Nikita Kucherov (19) Gabriel Landeskog (14) +/- Ondrej Palat (8) Nathan MacKinnon (5. 65) Shots (Per Game) Nikita Kucherov (3. 35)
Why Might the Colorado Avalanche Win?
The Colorado Avalanche is the favorite to win Game Four, even though they lost Game Three. They will win Game Four if they score their first goal and draw penalties.
HTML3_ The power-play was the basis for both Game Three goals scored by the Avalanche. Colorado now has more than 1/3 of its Playoff power play attempts. The Avalanche must continue to draw power-plays as they are likely to score with at least one man advantage.
The Avalanche didn’t have the game they needed in Game Three. However, that doesn’t mean they can’t rebound in Game Four. They must score their first goal if they are to be victorious in Tampa. They will be the ones setting the pace for the remainder of the match and in control.
Why might the Tampa Bay Lightning win?
The Tampa Bay Lightning are underdogs, but they can win if Gabriel Landeskog slows down and shoots as many as possible.
Gabe Landeskog scored two of Colorado’s Game Four goals. He has 11 goals in 17 Playoff games and has shown that he can put the puck in the back of the net. He needs to be slowed down by the Lightning’s defensemen, who must also be alert for his ability.
The Lightning were very efficient in Game Three; they managed to score six goals on only 33 shots. The Lightning must keep shooting, and capitalize on any mistakes made by the Avalanche’s goaltenders.
Avalanche Key Players (C) Nathan MacKinnon Nathan MacKinnon Nathan MacKinnon, an extremely talented player, has been very quiet during the Stanley Cup. MacKinnon is still shooting the puck, with two assists and zero goals. He had zero goals and zero assists in Game Three, with a score of +/- -2.
MacKinnon must take better shots, and make more intelligent plays on the ice. If he plays the right moves, he can become the Avalanche’s x-factor.
Lightning key player: (C) Steven Stamkos
Steven Stamkos captains this Lightning team. His contributions to the Stanley Cup Playoffs as well as the Playoffs have been impressive. Stamkos scored one goal in Game Three, and had an assist. He will continue to lead this team into Game Four. Stamkos’ leadership is needed to make Tampa Bay more offensively efficient than Colorado.
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How to Watch Colorado Avalanche vs Tampa Bay Lightning
Colorado Avalanche vs Tampa Bay Lightning Information What Colorado Avalanche vs Tampa Bay Lightning Where Amalie Arena, Tampa, Florida When Wednesday, June 22, 8: 00 PM EST How to Watch ABC, ESPN+