The Tampa Bay Lightning trailed in a series only three times en route to back-to-back Stanley Cup championships in 2020 and 2021. Their road to a potential third straight title has been much more difficult, however, as they were behind three times alone in the first round against Toronto and have lost the first two games in each of their last two series. The Lightning stormed back against the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference final, taking four straight to win their 11th consecutive playoff series. They hope to do the same in the 2022 Stanley Cup Final against the Colorado Avalanche, beginning on Monday as they aim for their eighth straight home victory this postseason when they host Game 3.

Opening faceoff at Amalie Arena is set for 8 p.m. ET. Tampa Bay is a -115 favorite (risk $115 to win $100) in the latest Lightning vs. Avalanche odds from Caesars Sportsbook, while Colorado is a -105 underdog. The over-under for total goals scored is six. Before making any Avalanche vs. Lightning picks or 2022 Stanley Cup Final predictions, you need to see what SportsLine expert Matt Severance has to say.

Severance is a well-connected writer and handicapper who has worked in the industry since 2005. He is SportsLine's top NHL handicapper, going 136-71-4 in his last 211 NHL picks and returning well over $2,900 for $100 players. Anyone who has followed him is way up.

Now, he has set his sights on Avs vs. Lightning. You can visit SportsLine now to see his picks. Here are the NHL odds and betting trends for Lightning vs. Avs: 

  • Lightning vs. Avalanche money line: Colorado -105, Tampa Bay -115
  • Lightning vs. Avalanche over-under: 6 goals
  • Lightning vs. Avalanche puck line: Tampa Bay -1.5 (+220)
  • Lightning vs. Avalanche tickets: See tickets at StubHub
  • COL: The Avalanche are 7-0 on the road this postseason
  • TB: The Lightning have allowed a total of five goals in their last five home games
Featured Game | Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Colorado Avalanche

Why the Lightning can win 

Tampa Bay has been superb at home this postseason, winning seven straight at Amalie Arena after Game 3 of its first-round series against the Maple Leafs. The Lightning have clamped down defensively in their own building, allowing a total of five goals over the last five contests. The club owns a plus-13 goal differential at home, where reigning Conn Smythe Trophy winner Andrei Vasilevskiy has posted a 1.69 goals-against average and .947 save percentage this postseason.

Nikita Kucherov led the NHL in playoff scoring each of the last two years and is tied for third this postseason with 24 points. The 29-year-old Russian right wing recorded three goals and six assists during a six-game point streak prior to Saturday's shutout loss. Ondrej Palat, who shares the team lead with nine goals and is second with 17 points, has registered six tallies and as many assists over his last 11 contests.

Why the Avalanche can win 

Colorado, which was fourth in the NHL during the regular season with 308 goals, leads the league with 76 this postseason. The Avalanche have lived up to their name in the opening period of the 2022 Stanley Cup Final, scoring three times over the first 20 minutes in each of the first two games. They are the third team in history to accomplish the feat, joining the 1936 Detroit Red Wings and 1981 New York Islanders.

Cale Makar leads Colorado's explosive offense as he is tied for third in the league with 24 points this postseason. The Norris Trophy finalist became the second defenseman in league history (Glen Wesley, 1988) to record both a short-handed and power-play goal in the same Stanley Cup Final game when he accomplished the feat on Saturday. The 23-year-old Makar, who made his NHL debut in the 2019 postseason, has amassed 55 points in 51 career playoff games.

How to make Lightning vs. Avalanche picks

Severance has analyzed Game 3 of Avalanche vs. Lightning from every angle and is leaning over on the total. He's also found a critical x-factor that has him jumping all over one side of the money line. You can only get the pick at SportsLine.

So who wins Lightning vs. Avalanche in Game 3 of the 2022 Stanley Cup Final? And which critical x-factor makes one side hit hard? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Avalanche vs. Lightning money line to jump on, all from the expert who has crushed his NHL picks, and find out.