Upcoming Match-ups

Potential NHL Playoffs Series Odds & Predictions

Brady Trettenero

by Brady Trettenero in NHL Hockey

Apr 14, 2020 · 12:09 PM PDT

Edmonton Oliers center Connor McDavid skating on the ice during a game.
Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (97) plays against the Vegas Golden Knights in an NHL hockey game Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
  • Odds have been released on potential 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoff series matchups
  • The matchups are based on the current standings, if the NHL were to go straight into a playoff
  • Read below for the potential matchups and our best bets

You can now wager on potential matchups for the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Sportsbooks have released first-round series odds in the event the NHL is able to resume play following its coronavirus hiatus. The seeding is based on the current standings and assumes the NHL won’t have time to conclude its regular season and will go straight into a playoff.

With the potential matchups including the Battle of Alberta and the Battle of Pennsylvania, which teams offer the best value to win their series?

2020 NHL Playoffs First-Round Odds

Team Odds to Win Series
Columbus Blue Jackets +280
Boston Bruins -350
Team Odds to Win Series
Toronto Maple Leafs +200
Tampa Bay Lightning -240
Team Odds to Win Series
Carolina Hurricanes +165
Washington Capitals -190
Team Odds to Win Series
Pittsburgh Penguins -110
Philadelphia Flyers -110
Team Odds to Win Series
Nashville Predators +150
St. Louis Blues -170
Team Odds to Win Series
Dallas Stars +135
Colorado Avalanche -155
Team Odds to Win Series
Winnipeg Jets +185
Vegas Golden Knights -215
Team Odds to Win Series
Calgary Flames +100
Edmonton Oilers -120

Odds taken April 14 

Take Oilers in Battle of Alberta

The Oilers were on track to be a solid longshot in the Western Conference prior to the COVID-19 pause. This was a team itching to get back to the playoffs after a two-year hiatus. The last time superstars Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl made the postseason was back in 2017 when they put on a clinic against the Sharks in the first round before taking the Ducks to seven games in Round 2.

The Flames, meanwhile, appeared lifeless in their first-round playoff matchup against Colorado last season. Star forward Johnny Gaudreau has no goals in his last two postseasons, while goalie Dave Rittich has no NHL playoff experience. The Oilers and Flames are only separated by four points in the standings, but Edmonton has a much better goal differential (+8 vs -5) and asserted their dominance when they decimated Calgary 8-3 back in February.

Pick: Oilers (-120)

Carolina Could Beat Washington Again

When Carolina and Washington met in the first round of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Hurricanes surprised lots of people when they took down the defending Stanley Cup Champs in seven games. There’s enough evidence to suggest they could do it again. At the time of the pause, the Hurricanes had some of the best-advanced stats in the NHL, ranking third in both Corsi (54.43) and Fenwick (53.59).

The Capitals were trending downwards at the time of the pause with an 8-10-2 record since the All-Star break. Goaltending is everything in the playoffs, and Braden Holtby’s .897 save percentage is reason for concern. 23-year-old backup Ilya Samsonov has promise, but he’s never played in an NHL playoff game. The Hurricanes, meanwhile, would likely be turning to Petr Mrazek, who has proven he can defeat the Caps in a playoff series. It’s also important to note that Hurricanes’ blueliner Dougie Hamilton, who was considered a Norris candidate before fracturing his left fibula on January 16, would likely be able to return.

Pick: Carolina (+165)

Stars Have Value in West

There wasn’t one team in the Western Conference that seemed like a sure-fire bet to reach the Stanley Cup Final in 2020. The West is pretty wide open, and the Stars are one team that could pull out an upset in Round 1. Dallas came within inches of knocking off the eventual Stanley Cup champs St.Louis Blues in the second round last year and could actually play spoiler to another Western Conference powerhouse this time around.

The Avalanche have plenty of offensive talent, but they don’t match up well against the Stars. Dallas has won four straight games against Colorado and possesses the goaltending to shut down Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen. Ben Bishop has been one of the NHL’s best goalies this season and owns a stellar .929 career playoff save percentage. As good as the Avalanche’s offense is, they aren’t as strong in the goaltending department with the inexperienced Pavel Francouz and Phillip Grubauer.

Pick: Dallas (+135)

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