Bet the Stanley Cup Game 6: Greg Frank likes the Lightning talent but admires the Stars' grit, so is picking an over
Lightning (-167) @ Stars (5)
Pick: Stars Team Total Over 2.5 (+120)
The Stars found some magic just in time on Saturday night to force a sixth game in the Stanley Cup Final. After the Lightning took a 2-1 lead in Game 5, it felt inevitable that Tampa would hoist the cup as it continued to look like the superior team. However the veterans for Dallas stepped up as Joe Pavelski tied things up late in the third period and Corey Perry won the game in the second overtime. Tyler Seguin, a veteran not quite as experienced as Pavelski and Perry, also had a nice game for the Stars with three assists.
I don’t doubt that the Lightning are the better team in this series, but there’s a level of grit and mental fortitude that the Stars have that makes me hesitant to back Tampa at such a juicy price. Dallas was an underdog of longer than 2-1 on the series price against Colorado in the conference semifinals and against Vegas in the conference finals. Pavelski has never won the Stanley Cup and is certainly playing like someone hungry to hoist the best trophy in sports. Anton Khudobin has been playing at a Conn Smythe Trophy level in goal and wasn’t even the team’s starter in the regular season. There’s just too many intangibles with this Stars team to make me feel good about fading them with their backs against the wall. I don’t love the Dallas side either but I do think the Stars can get three goals tonight and will play their team total over at plus money.