With the NHL schedule screeching to a halt due to widespread outbreaks of Covid-19 in team dressing rooms, now is a great time to take a look at the teams making the biggest gains on the odds to win the Stanley Cup. The same familiar faces continue to lead the way on the odds board, but with considerably less wiggle room. The Colorado Avalanche maintain their perch as betting favourites but currently sit as a 7.44 bet at Sports Interaction after opening their schedule with odds as short as 5.80.
The Vegas Golden Knights, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Toronto Maple Leafs still round out the front of the pack, while the Calgary Flames have emerged as the fastest-rising squad at the sportsbooks. Pegged as a distant 41.00 preseason bet after missing the postseason during the abbreviated 2021 campaign, the Flames have vaulted to a short 18.00 wager, thanks to a steady start that has positioned them to challenge for the Pacific Division title.
CanadianBettingSites has got you covered with all the odds and trends as the race for the Stanley Cup heats up. Sports bettors looking to get in on NHL action for the first time can learn all they need to know about hockey betting in Canada.
|Stanley Cup Odds|
|Vegas Golden Knights||8.28||7.80|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||9.00||8.60|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||9.00||8.80|
|New York Rangers||19.00||18.00|
|St. Louis Blues||24.00||22.00|
|New York Islanders||42.00||70.00|
|Los Angeles Kings||87.00||80.00|
|San Jose Sharks||93.00||90.00|
|Detroit Red Wings||97.00||90.00|
|Columbus Blue Jackets||100.00||90.00|
|New Jersey Devils||197.00||180.00|
Favourites Overcome Slow Starts
Slow starts were commonplace among teams listed as favourites on the season-opening Stanley Cup betting picks. The Colorado Avalanche mustered consecutive wins on just one occasion during a middling 4-5-1 start. However, the Avs wasted no time righting the ship, and have since been one of the hottest teams in the NHL while racking up wins in 13 of their subsequent contests.
Pete DeBoer on if he expected Mark Stone’s upper-body injury to be long-term:
“I don’t. He missed time earlier in the year, and it was serious. I don’t think that’s the case this time around.”
— Jesse Granger (@JesseGranger_) December 19, 2021
The Vegas Golden Knights also endured a slow start. With both Mark Stone and Max Pacioretty finding their way onto the injured reserve during the first week of the season, the Golden Knights managed to pick up wins in just four of their first nine outings. However, Vegas has regained steady form since, returning to the hunt for the Pacific Division crown during a 16-6-0 run.
Eastern Powerhouses on the Rise
Over in the Eastern Conference, things have unfolded in a similar fashion for the Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs. The Lightning enjoyed the shortest offseason in NHL history on the heels of last summer’s Stanley Cup win, and it showed, with the champs earning wins in just six of their first 12 outings. However, even injuries to Nikita Kucherov and Brayden Point have been unable to stop the Lightning from regaining their championship form. Indeed, Tampa Bay has managed to avoid losing consecutive gains during a subsequent 13-3-1 run that has lifted them into a tie with the Leafs for first place in the Atlantic Division.
— Bryan Burns (@BBurnsNHL) December 14, 2021
Injuries have also been an issue in Toronto. With Auston Matthews seeing his season debut delayed as he recovered from offseason wrist surgery, the Maple Leafs sputtered to a 2-4-1 start. With Matthews quickly regaining the form that earned him his first career Maurice Richard Trophy as last season’s top goal scorer, Toronto demonstrated its ability to be any team during a subsequent 15-2-0 run. However, the burning question for long-suffering Leaf’s fans remains whether this time has a good enough mix to overcome their epic 55-year Stanley Cup drought.
To win their first Stanley Cup title since 1989
Are the Flames for Real?
One of the biggest surprises of the NHL season so far has been the steady play of the Calgary Flames. Dogged by controversy, Covid-19, and all-around bad play, the Flames finished last season out of playoff contention, and have claimed just one postseason series win since last reaching the Stanley Cup Final back in 2004.
After an incredibly successful start to the 2021–22 season, the Calgary Flames have hit their first big rough patch of the year. Not only has the team lost their last four games for their longest losing streak of the season, the team has also beenhttps://t.co/VjAKaIe4q4
— Shop CGY Hockey (@ShopCGYHockey) December 17, 2021
However, the Flames have received standout performances from veteran goaltender Jacob Markstrom, and unlike last season, their top players are consistently fulfilling the promise this time around. That includes Johnny Gaudreau, Elias Lindholm, and Matthew Tkachuk, who have combined to score almost 39% of the team’s goals to date. And while the Flames shut things down for Christmas riding a four-game losing streak, they will return to action with a second-ranked 11-4-2 road record and will play 30 of their final 54 regular-season games on home ice.
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