Eastern Conference (-120) Has Slightly Better Odds to Win 2020 Stanley Cup Than West (+100) in Newest NHL Prop

Jordan Binnington holding Stanley Cup
The St. Louis Blues were the first NHL Western Conference team to win the Stanley Cup since the 2014-15 Chicago Blackawks. Photo: @stlouisblues (Twitter)
  • The St. Louis Blues won the 2018-19 Stanley Cup
  • Their victory ended a three-year run of Eastern Conference teams winning the Stanley Cup
  • The Western Conference has produced six of the last 10 Stanley Cup champions

It would be disingenuous to say that there is a big East Conference vs Western Conference rivalry in the NHL, but the oddsmakers didn’t let that stop them from creating an East-vs-West prop for the 2020 Stanley Cup.

2019-20 NHL Stanley Cup Conference Winner

Conference Odds
East -120
West +100

*Odds taken 07/12/19.

Last season’s victory by the St. Louis Blues halted a three-year run of Eastern Conference teams winning the Stanley Cup. Prior to that, the West produced five of six Cup winners.

Sportsbooks have set the East as favorites in 2020, which makes sense given that the 2020 Stanley Cup odds have three Eastern teams (Tampa Bay, Boston, Toronto) in the top four.

NHL Conference Cup Trends

Since the NHL adopted the monikers Eastern and Western Conference in 1993-94, patterns have developed.

The first two Cups of this era were won by the Eastern Conference. Then followed an era of Western Conference dominance. Beginning in 1996, the West won six of the next seven.

The East rose again beginning in 2003, winning three straight titles. Western dominance then returned; from 2008-15, the Western Conference were Stanley Cup champions six times in eight seasons.

The pendulum swung back to the East for three successive titles. The Blues regained the advantage for the West this past June.

Eastern Conference Contenders

The Tampa Bay Lightning look like a Stanley Cup champion in waiting. They were the No. 1 team during the regular season last year, but were stunningly swept by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the opening playoff round.

2020 NHL Stanley Cup Odds: Eastern Conference Contenders

Team 2020 Stanley Cup Odds
Tampa Bay Lightning +850
Boston Bruins +1000
Toronto Maple Leafs +1200
Washington Capitals +1800
Pittsburgh Penguins +2200
Florida Panthers +2200

*Odds taken 07/12/19. Follow link for complete list of all teams.

The Washington Capitals (2017-18) and Pittsburgh Penguins (2015-17) – were both recent cup winners. The Boston Bruins were Game 7 losers in the final last spring.

Western Conference Contenders

Sports is a been there, done that pursuit. The problem the NHL’s Western Conference faces is that, other than Blues, its top contenders haven’t been there and none of them have done that for a long time.

2020 NHL Stanley Cup Odds: Western Conference Contenders

Team 2020 Stanley Cup Odds
Vegas Golden Knights +1000
Colorado Avalanche +1300
Dallas Stars +1600
Nashville Predators +1600
St. Louis Blues +1600

The Vegas Golden Knights and Nashville Predators played in recent Cup finals but didn’t win. Dallas last won a Cup in 1999 and Colorado in 2001.

Feast On The East

The Blues have the look of a one-and-done team in terms of winning titles. They aren’t a superstar-laden squad and they’ll be fatigued from playing into June.

The East still has the deepest roster of contenders. That’s the conference you should play.

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