With the NFL season underway, most other sports are forced to take a backseat in the hearts and minds of bettors. Perhaps that’s what has allowed the NHL season to creep up with the stealth and silence of a serial killer in a horror movie. Although it seems as though the NHL season ended quite recently, pre-season action actually begins this Sunday (9/21) with the regular season opening play on October 8th.
Throughout the off-season we’ve written about Stanley Cup Futures, Divisional Odds and Point Totals, but just this week one of the more public sportsbooks posted the NHL playoff odds for all 30 teams.
Bovada, which is considered to be one of the most square sportsbooks, posted a prop bet in which bettors could simply say “Yes” or “No” to the question of whether each NHL team will make the playoffs. The table below displays the current odds for all 30 teams and will be continually updated before the start of the season.
|St. Louis Blues||-800||+500|
|Los Angeles Kings||-800||+500|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||-300||+240|
|San Jose Sharks||-300||+240|
|New York Rangers||-275||+215|
|Detroit Red Wings||-180||+150|
|Columbus Blue Jackets||-135||+105|
|New York Islanders||-115||-115|
|New Jersey Devils||-105||-125|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||-105||-125|
It’s not surprising to see that the teams with the best odds of winning the Stanley Cup — i.e. the Blackhawks, Bruins, Penguins and Ducks — also have the best odds to make the playoffs. However, there are a few discrepancies including the Arizona Coyotes who have the 10th worst future odds but the 3rd worst playoff odds. Perhaps this speaks to the depth of the Western Conference and specifically the Pacific Division which features elite teams like the Ducks, Sharks and Kings along with a much-improved Canucks team.
It may also noteworthy to point out that the Kings (+900) have better odds of winning the Stanley Cup than the Penguins (+1000), but Pittsburgh actually has better odds of making the playoffs (-850) than Los Angeles (-800). Once again, this likely speaks to the depth and talent in the Western Conference.
Which eight teams do you think will make the playoffs in each conference? Are any teams being undervalued by oddsmakers? Please leave any thoughts, comments, or questions in the section below.