Having not expected to write another column until September, I predicted there wouldn't BE a Game 6. Nonetheless, here's the next fearless forecast. But wait!! You can't just go picking players. You need to decide whether the Colorado Avalanche comes with enough determination and desperation to close the series out, or will the Tampa Bay Lightning use their experience and the energy from a frenzied crowd to force Game 7.
You see, being a luke-warm and safe bettor will nearly always find the middle, and you'll be out of the winnings. Spectacularly WRONG 3 times out of 4 can PAY if you're spectacularly right for that other one. And looking away from the obvious choices, at least some, can also put you into that top 10% of predictors, which gets you a nice return.
My game vision for tonight is for a 5-3 Colorado cup-clincher. Yes, Andrei Vasilevskiy can steal a game, BUT we all saw exactly that happen on Friday night! The Avs drove the play, outshot the Bolts significantly, and the only difference was in net. I see Colorado having over 40 shots again Sunday night. Darcy Kuemper will never steal one of these games against Tampa, but he doesn't have to.
And thus, the lineup. At Captain, I will take the grinding Colorado "C," Gabriel Landeskog ($11,700 with the 50% premium), and add Nathan MacKinnon ($11,400) to break out of his mini-slump. Then Conn Smythe winner-to-be Cale Makar ($10,400), and Logan O'Connor ($2000, site minimum). From the Lightning, I have Victor Hedman ($8800) and Corey Perry ($5600), who's fighting to avoid the personal ignominy to become the first NHLer to ever lose in the finals 3 years in a row, all with different teams. No goalkeepers. Even with points for a victory, their values fade after 3 goals, and Tampa hasn't had the shot volume. Ondrej Palat ($7400) would be another play but didn't fit unless I passed on Hedman.
I do feel that Game