- 2021 Stanley Cup odds have been released ahead of the upcoming NHL playoffs
- The Colorado Avalanche are the favorites, while the Tampa Bay Lighting are +700 to repeat
- See the Stanley Cup odds for all 16 teams along with betting analysis below
The 2021 NHL playoffs start on Saturday, May 15th, and Stanley Cup odds have been released for all 16 participating teams. The four teams in each division will play each other in the opening two rounds before being reseeded based on regular-season points for the final four.
Nathan MacKinnon and the Colorado Avalanche are favored to win the Stanley Cup in 2021, while the reigning champs, the Tampa Bay Lightning, are listed at +700. The last team to repeat as Cup champions was the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2016 and 2017.
We layout the updated Stanley Cup odds for all 16 teams and provide best bets and value longshots.
2021 Stanley Cup Odds
|Team||Odds at DraftKings|
|Vegas Golden Knights||+550|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||+600|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||+700|
|New York Islanders||+2000|
|St. Louis Blues||+3700|
Odds as of May 14th
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Loaded Avalanche The Favorite
The Colorado Avalanche are unsurprisingly listed as the favorites to win Lord Stanley after capturing the Presidents’ Trophy as the NHL’s best team in the regular season. Colorado posted a 39-13-4 record despite dealing with injuries to key players throughout the year. While the team is almost fully healthy, there’s some minor concern as Nathan MacKinnon has missed time with two separate ailments. He’s expected to be ready for the playoffs, however.
Colorado made it to the Western Conference Finals last year before bowing out in seven games to the Dallas Stars. Defense was the Avs’ downfall in that series, as they surrendered 23 goals. Colorado has improved in that area, bringing in two-way blueliner Devon Toews, plus 2020 Calder winner Cale Makar has another year under his belt. Not to mention, goalie Philipp Grubauer has had a strong season (.916 SV%).
— NHL (@NHL) May 8, 2021
Right behind the Avalanche in the updated odds is the Vegas Golden Knights, who have made it to the Conference Finals in two of their first three seasons. The Golden Knights are once again one of the NHL’s most complete teams and got an excellent bounce-back campaign from goalie Marc-Andre Fleury. Blueliner Alex Pietrangelo is also playing some of his best hockey since signing with Vegas as a free agent this past summer.
Vegas and Colorado aren’t heavy favorites, but their odds have shortened over the course of the season. These two teams are so evenly matched that it’s hard to predict who would win in a seven-game series. Considering Colorado and Vegas are likely to meet in Round 2, the safer play might be betting on an Eastern team. I’d give the Avs a slight edge over Vegas due to their explosive offense, but that’s a tough potential series to call.
Lightning at +700 to Repeat
The Tampa Bay Lightning are listed at +700 to repeat as Stanley Cup champions in the updated odds. The main reason to consider betting on Tampa Bay is elite goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, who is listed as the favorite in the Vezina Trophy odds. The Russian netminder owns a .925 save percentage this season and was outstanding during the team’s 2020 championship run.
The Lightning are also getting back superstar Nikita Kucherov for Game 1 against the Florida Panthers after he missed the entire regular season following offseason hip surgery. Captain Steven Stamkos is also expected to return for the postseason after missing the past month with a lower-body injury.
How far Tampa goes in the playoffs is likely dependent on how quickly Kucherov and Stamkos get up to speed. Kucherov in particular hasn’t played since September and could be rusty in the opening series. The Panthers won’t be an easy out and finished with three more points than the Lightning in the regular season.
It tells you something that, even with Kucherov confirmed available, the Lightning have similar odds to what they opened at. The concern is the health of 2020 Conn Smythe winner Victor Hedman, who missed the final two regular-season games with a lower-body injury that will require offseason surgery. Hedman is so valuable that his injury is reason to think twice before laying down a wager on Tampa Bay.
Kaprizov’s Wild Among Best Longshots
The Minnesota Wild at +2200 in the updated Stanley Cup odds immediately jumps out as an intriguing longshot wager due to rookie sensation Kirill Kaprizov. The former KHL superstar is favored in the Calder Trophy odds after an epic rookie campaign that saw him explode for 27 goals and 51 points in 55 games.
— x – Minnesota Wild (@mnwild) May 8, 2021
The Wild are longshots because they have to face one of the NHL’s most talented teams in Round 1. What’s interesting is that Minnesota has won five of the past six meetings with Vegas and appear to have developed a recipe for beating Peter DeBoer’s club. Playoffs are a different animal, however, and the Golden Knights will have fans in the stands at T-Mobile Arena. The Wild are still worth considering, especially with goalie Cam Talbot coming off an excellent regular season.
If you’re looking for value elsewhere on the board, the Bruins at +1000 could be a wager that pays off nicely. Boston landed one of the most sought after trade deadline targets in Taylor Hall and are 12-4-1 since acquiring him. The Bruins still have one of the best first lines in hockey, and netminder Tuukka Rask owns an incredible .926 save percentage in 93 career playoff starts.