- Oddsmakers have make/miss playoff odds for Western Conference bubble teams
- The Golden Knights and Minnesota Wild are among those with value
- Read below for the odds and our betting advice
You can bet on which “bubble” teams in the Western Conference will make the playoffs. Oddsmakers have posted props for 10 teams that are closely vying for a spot in the NHL postseason.
Vegas is being listed as a bubble team despite opening the season with the best NHL playoff odds out of any team in the Western Conference.
Which Western Conference teams offer the best value to make or miss the playoffs?
2020 NHL Playoff Odds
|Team||Odds to Make Playoffs||Odds to Miss Playoffs|
|Vegas Golden Knights||-250||+210|
Odds taken Jan. 26
Golden Knights Will Win Pacific
The Golden Knights are arguably the most complete team in the Pacific Division and only trail the division-leading Canucks by a single point. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury is a stellar 9-1-2 against the Pacific this year, but he’s struggled of late. The reason to bet on Vegas is that Fleury owns a stellar .921 career save percentage in the month of March and seems to play his best hockey during the playoff push.
— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) January 24, 2020
There is also good value for Vegas to make the playoffs while they get adjusted to new coach Peter DeBoer. The Golden Knights have the third-best Corsi percentage (53.64) in the entire league and have an elite forward group that includes five players with at least 30 points.
The Golden Knights have been rumored to make a move for a defenseman at the February 24 NHL trade deadline. Considering they already have a top-10 ranked power-play unit and elite talent at every position, this team is likely just a few moves away from running away with the division title.
Pick: Vegas Golden Knights to make playoffs (-250)
Wild Outmatched in Central
Minnesota has solid value to miss the playoffs due to the division they are playing in. The Blues and Avalanche are almost locked to finish top-two in the Central Division, while Dallas is a great bet to claim the third spot. Minnesota will likely be competing for a Wildcard spot and they are outmatched in talent by several other teams.
Minnesota’s -10 goal differential is the worst in its division and the team’s top three scorers are all 35-year-old veterans who are likely to slow down in the second half of the season. Starting goaltender Devan Dubnyk owns a lackluster .893 save percentage, while his backup Alex Stalock hasn’t been much better with a .903 save percentage.
The Wild lack the offensive upside that some of their competition has with respective young superstars. Minnesota is also giving up a whopping 3.28 goals-per-game and there’s no sign the defense will improve. Matt Dumba plays a huge role on the blueline, but he’s struggled this season after undergoing surgery on his ruptured right pectoralis muscle last year.
Pick: Minnesota Wild to miss playoffs (-240)
Blackhawks Will Fall Just Short
Much like the Wild in the Central, the Blackhawks are going to have a hard time locking down a playoff spot in a very competitive division. They only trail Dallas by four points but the Stars have three games in hand. Chicago has allowed the most shots in the entire NHL, and eventually, their lackluster defense will catch up to them.
— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) November 24, 2019
The Blackhawks’ advanced stats are also among the worst in the NHL. They own a 48.20 Corsi-For Percentage, a 46.66 Expected Goals-For Percentage and a 47.52 Fenwick-For Percentage. Their minus-six goal differential is third-worst in the division.
Each of the top five teams in the Pacific Division has at least three more points than Chicago, and only Calgary (-12) has a worse goal differential. Even if one of the Pacific teams stumble, Nashville is a team capable of stealing that Wildcard spot. The Predators trail the Blackhawks by just three points with four games in hand and have been a top-10 team this season in advanced stats.
Pick: Chicago Blackhawks to miss playoffs (-200)