- Winnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck is favored to win his first Vezina Trophy
- Andrei Vasilevskiy won the award last year and is 16-2-2 over the last two months for the red-hot Lightning
- Other contenders are losing starts to load-management, much like NBA stars
Winnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck is currently the favorite to win the 2020 Vezina Trophy. Online sportsbooks recently updated their Vezina futures, and Hellebuyck is either first or tied at two prominent betting sites.
2020 Vezina Trophy Odds
|Player||Odds at Sportsbook 1||Odds at Sportsbook 2|
|Connor Hellebuyck (Jets)||+350||+300|
|Tuukka Rask (Bruins)||+400||+300|
|Ben Bishop (Stars)||+450||+300|
|Andrei Vasilevskiy (Lightning)||+600||+700|
|Jordan Binnington (Blues)||+600||+500|
|Tristan Jarry (Penguins)||+600||OFF|
|Jacob Markstrom (Canucks)||+700||OFF|
|Frederik Andersen (Maple Leafs)||+800||OFF|
|Darcy Kuemper (Coyotes)||OFF||+500|
Odds taken Feb. 4th.
If I could shout this advice from the mountain tops I would – there is a glaring oversight in these odds that you can take advantage of if you move quickly. There’s no reason for Hellebuyck to be the favorite for this award. Here’s the case against him and for the player I think will end up with the trophy at the end of the season.
Fade Connor Hellebuyck
The Vezina Trophy odds may show Hellebuyck at the top of the list but there’s little to no reason to believe he’ll win the award. Winnipeg is currently on the outside of the playoff picture looking in and they just got news star defenseman Dustin Byfuglien will not be returning to the team.
Hearing #nhljets and Dustin Byfuglien are working toward a mutual contract termination over the next several days, which would end his suspension (and grievance) – and finally give Winnipeg the salary cap clarity needed ahead of #TradeCentre.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) February 3, 2020
Byfuglien and the Jets are working towards an agreement that will see him released from his contract. This will free-up cap space but teams aren’t looking to get rid of players with the talent of Byfuglien so there’s only so much they can do with that space this year.
It’s becoming increasingly likely the Jets miss the playoffs and, if that is in fact the case, you can all but kiss Hellebuyck’s award chances goodbye no matter how good his stats are.
Look for Andrei Vasilevskiy to Repeat
There is a ton of value betting Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy at +700. Tampa Bay looks more like the record setting unit of a year ago and a large part of that is Vasilevskiy’s great play. He’s 16-2-2 over the last two months with a 2.23 goals against average and .925 save percentage. The great stretch has moved him into the top-three in both categories when looking at goalies with at least 30 games played.
Andrei Vasilevskiy (246 GP) became the fourth goaltender in NHL history to reach 150-win mark prior to 250 games played. The others:
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) February 1, 2020
Vasilevskiy won the award and could absolutely do so again this year. I made the case against Hellebuyck already but look at the other top contenders and you’ll see Vasilevskiy has a better chance than them as well.
Bruins starter Tuukka Rask is almost splitting time with Jaroslav Halak and that will hurt his chances. Stars goalie Ben Bishop is also giving up starts to his backup, Anton Khudobin, while playing on a team that won’t finish with nearly as many wins as Tampa Bay.
Value Will Fade Quickly With Only 30 Games Remaining
If you wait 10 more games the packed field will start to become more clear and the odds will drop in dramatic fashion. Bet Vasilevskiy before things become more clear and take advantage of the fact you can get the player who should be seen as the front-runner at longshot-like odds.
PICK: Andrei Vasilevskiy (+700)
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